Posted by: mick | November 14, 2010

Kitchen Cure 2010

Those of you who know me personally know that my biggest obsession for the past few years has been saving up to buy a house.  Though that dream was set back a bit when we made such an expensive move from MI to PA this past summer, we’re slowly but surely getting closer to our goal.  I spend a lot of my internet time obsessively looking at home design and decor blogs, home improvement blogs, and clipping photos into my Evernote account for future inspiration.  When you add in the trolling of online house listings that we can’t afford yet, you’ve got a pretty big obsession.

Recently I’ve realized that, although all of this hoping and planning is good, it’s prevented me from really enjoying the space J and I are in right now, both physically and mentally/emotionally.  We’re settling in and loving our lives, and it seemed time to focus a bit on improving our current space (on a budget, of course) so that we don’t ignore the present for dreams about the future.

It was perfect that Apartment Therapy’s Kitchen Cure coincided with these ruminations.  Our kitchen was the room that really sold us on this place because it’s so big, and now that it’s cooler we spend a lot more time in there cooking.  It was in need of some work, and so I’ve spent the past four weeks doing lots of organization, cleaning, and thinking about our kitchen.  I rearranged and organized the pantry, our shelves, the spice drawer, and even our utensils.  I was lucky that, since we moved in only four months ago, we had a relatively clean slate, and I didn’t have to unload any extra techy items or old food.  All of that was trashed or donated before we left MI, thank goodness.

I spent the past week particularly dressing up the kitchen: Last Sunday I made seven (7!) curtains, and this past week I painted an organizer for over the stove that J helped me hang.  All of that culminated in our new kitchen, which looks like this:

We pulled the yellow from the pitcher and my great-grandmother’s chairs as an accent color.  The peg board was insanely easy: just a matter of measuring, asking Home Depot to cut it and some supports, spray painting it yellow and hanging it on the wall.  Now I’ve got some regularly-used spices and oils within easy reach, and the cooking nook is nice and cheerful!

The curtains are all this same fabric, except for a larger one that’s made from some yellow linen.

I love that the curtain fabrics were all from previous projects (my old cushions and a table cloth, respectively), so they cost us nothing.  Overall, I definitely spent under 100 bucks on the following: Ball jars for pantry organization, peg board supplies, curtain rods, and a few new utensils.  Though we’re still excited about a new place that we can truly personalize (J said to me while hanging the peg board, “It’s little projects like these that make me excited to buy and decorate a house with you!”), we’re now really loving our current, albeit imperfect, rental kitchen.



  1. LOVE. i am daydreaming about a new apartment (in the country?) and thus, a new kitchen to nest in. looks great.

  2. Very nice! It’s so worth it to enjoy the present; it makes every day that much more worthwhile. On that note, I MUST put up some framed prints and my red clock in the kitchen this week!

  3. I can totally understand your obsession–been there, done that. I think it’s really smart to focus on something like this to enjoy the present, too. And the finished project is absolutely adorable–a very happy space that you’re going to enjoy a ton!

  4. Sweet! Now, Mick, you can come organize my kitchen. Unfortunately I know there is a ton of stuff in the back of cupboards that has been there for 12+ years. I am a little scared to do the excavation myself 🙂

  5. It’s so colorful! I love your yellow peg board, so cheery and a great use of space. Kudos for living in the moment… and one day, when you do have that house of your own, you’ll have gathered enough inspiration to start on your projects with gusto. I can’t wait for you to get a house, just so I can see what you do with it!

  6. Oh my gosh, I love your kitchen! Mine is a tiny dark hole that gets the job done and nothing more. One day, I will follow your lead and do the peg board thing. That is awesome.

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