Monday, January 8, 2007

What's Cooking in the Kitchen?

Not a thing for a long long time...

At this point we knew the first floor would be a total gut. No surprises here.













This time I was surprised not to find any gas lighting - it was all electric only. I lucked out with the linoleum flooring, which at the Glenolden house took me days to get up. Here the old one piece floor was at the bottom of the layers with 3 more on top. When it was installed, only the perimeter was glued so when I got under it with pry bars, all the layers came up together with little effort. I took it up in 4 foot sections and what I thought would be a day or two job - took an hour! I'll take any good news at this point....















The pantry had long since lost it's built-ins, but when I removed the panelling, there was still some original pine left that I was able to salvage.




Unfortunately it was February and there was one lonely radiator in this section of the house. It was chilly enough, but taking everything down to studs made this part of the house down right COLD! The back addition off the house had some siding issues and daylight could be seen through some points. With everything ripped out, I quickly did a patch insulation job until I came back to rework the walls. The first floor still ended up struggling to get out of the 50's half the time - complicated by heater issues that I'll cover later.



By far the busiest area of the restoration will be back in the kitchen/pantry area. The original kitchen room is a 12 x 12 room with 5 doorways, an over sized window and a radiator, plus the heater chimney that chases through one corner, and an angled ceiling where the gas fireplace flue runs through the ceiling - not much to work with here! Even with a separate pantry room, we quickly realized this setup just won't work today no matter how much we wanted to preserve the originality of the house.


I decided the best idea was to open up the kitchen, pantry, hall, and half of the bath into one kitchen room, and then make the 8 x 6 section that was originally the open porch into a smaller powder room. I didn't need the 8 x 12 bath back there now. Since the back had been re muddled so many times, I didn't feel bad about doing this to the house. I figured I would have to add a piece of steel to reinforce the end joist after removing the back wall - but as it happens in these old houses, you never know what to expect to find.



As it turned out the last joist served nothing more than a nailer to keep this dividing wall in place and actually was no supported by much at the ends. As a bit over kill, I did double up the joist and add some support at the chimney end, so there should be no problems with any settling.


With the back opened up, I now had a clean slate to design a kitchen in - but this would prove to be quite a challenge with an unusual footprint to work around. Plus what started out as purchasing a vintage stove to use in a modern "vintage look" kitchen would turn into a full authentic 1930's kitchen!

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Chelsea said...
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