Basement Kitchenette Mini-Reveal

mpagmomApril 18, 2013

Steph2000, this is for you!

When we built our house last year we set aside an 11.5-foot long stretch of wall in the basement for a kitchenette. My brother brings his family from overseas once every couple years and they stay about a month. Because they have strict religious dietary restrictions, it is always best for them to have their own kitchen space (for example, none of the dishes, cookware, or utensils they use should ever be exposed to pork). When he isn't visiting I use the freezer for overflow (and very occasionally the refrigerator) and the oven a few times a year (maybe baked potatoes in the summer or a turkey at Thanksgiving).

We had electrical and plumbing added by our builder, but we planned to install a kitchen later. Much later. Until my brother called in October and told us he planned to visit in a month. I wondered if I could put in a kitchen in a month and quickly decided I could.

I may have chosen Ikea cabinets anyway to keep costs down, but now I was definitely going with Ikea because I didn't have time for anything else. And it was nice that I could fit the whole kitchen in the back of my minivan. I found out my brother was coming on Sunday, planned the kitchen Monday-Wednesday, purchased the kitchen Thursday, installed the cabinets Friday-Saturday, and had the countertops measured for granite on the following Monday. Everything but the backsplash installation was done by the time my brother arrived, and I finally got around to that early this week.

Ikea was having one of their "10% off if you spend $3500" sales, so I got everything from them that I could to get the discount - cabinets, granite, sink, garbage disposal, and accessories. They usually have a 25 sq. ft. minimum for countertop installations but they did mine anyway even though it was half that. The installers did a nice job, too. I already had the range and refrigerator from a previous house or I would have considered stainless.

Oh, and I know putting the range in a corner is not optimal, but I did it anyway because that was the layout I liked best. It does meet our state building code, which says only that the range must be installed according to the manufacturer's specifications. The manufacturer says this is OK. My brother uses the oven quite a bit, but almost never uses the stove. Maybe they make rice now and then. If someone were using the stove often, I would beg them to only use the burners on the left.

You can't beat Ikea for ease of installation. We are not big DIY-ers and the hardest part was probably the light rail and top trim. I agonized over drilling holes for the knobs, too, but they came out OK.

So here it is. I'll give as many details as I can remember, but if you have questions feel free to ask.

The basement is a walkout, and the picture above was taken with only natural light. The puck lights inside the cabinets were obviously on, and I have them on a motion sensor switch so they come on when you enter the basement. It's a nice night light for my son (who has a bedroom down there) and my husband (who has an office down there). The light is not really that yellow, that's the photography.

The picture below shows the texture of the glass in the cabinets. It isn't quite clear, which I like. It is actually more opaque in real life than in this picture. I'm sure I'll put more stuff in these cabinets at some point.

And this shows a closer view of the granite, backsplash, and Ikea sink:

Here are the details:

Ikea Adel white cabinets (they are kind of an off-white)

Ikea knobs (I think they are called Fintorp)

Steel Grey granite

AKDO 3/4-inch x 3/4-inch Carrara Bella honed marble backsplash

Ikea Bredskar 20" undermount sink with collander

Daltile City View Seaside Boardwalk 18"x18" floor tile

Tri-flow faucet from local water filtration company

Zephyr Breeze II Range Hood

Samsung RB195ACBP Refrigerator

GE electric range

LED undercabinet lighting is from American Fluorescent AMF-LUL24WH

LED puck lighting is from WAC Lighting HR-LED 85-WT

SW Comfort Gray paint

This post was edited by mpagmom on Fri, Apr 19, 13 at 16:32

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Ooh--love what you've done. We have a daylight basement that we also use as a guest suite. It isn't as nice as yours, and we included Ikea's open metal shelves instead of upper cabinets. I think ours is very nice, but yours is positively elegant.

I know our guests enjoy having a little more personal space and the ability to have snacks or even some of their meals on their own, if that works better. One family who visited from South Africa even took photos of their ''apartment'' at our home to show friends when they returned home. (They emailed us the photos they had taken after they returned to South Africa---they even photographed the well stocked fridge to show others.)

How nice of you to make sure your family has accommodations that will serve their unique needs. The fact that you made it so functional and beautiful is an added bonus.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2013 at 2:18PM
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Thanks, sail-away! I'd like to see your guest suite (complete with stocked fridge).

I should add that my dad has his eyes on our basement when he gets tired of taking care of his house. So far he shows no signs of getting tired - he's 78 and I wish I had his energy! I think he would at least wait until two of our four children have left home.

After agonizing over our "real" kitchen for a year it was fun to do a kitchen where I made all the decisions in a week!

    Bookmark   April 18, 2013 at 2:47PM
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I read your description as though it were a novel or short story -- how would you ever pull it off? But of course, having seen the results of your hard work on your upstairs kitchen, I should have known you'd make it! It's a beautiful functional space -- I'd love to visit a place so thoughtfully planned for all my varied needs. The lighted cabinets and lovely backsplash are elegant, and unexpected in a small utilitarian space. Just great!

Was your brother sufficiently grateful? :-)

    Bookmark   April 18, 2013 at 6:48PM
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Wow! It looks as nice as many full-size, main floor kitchens! Really pretty!

    Bookmark   April 18, 2013 at 11:18PM
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mpagmom, what a nice kitchen! very lucky guests!
question, did you get your reeded glass from ikea also?

    Bookmark   April 19, 2013 at 12:05AM
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Looks nice - but be aware that having a stovetop against a wall (or any combustible surface) is a building code violation. It should be at least 4" away, so that hot large pans can't rub against the wallpaper or drywall covering and start a fire. At least fasten a sheet of stainless steel or something onto the lower side of the right wall.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2013 at 1:56AM
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That is beautiful! I can't believe how fast you did it!! Very impressive.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2013 at 6:08AM
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Michoumonster, the Adel glass doors come with that glass. I really like it.

Thanks legallin, cat_mom, and justmakeit!

To answer your question, justmakeit, my brother isn't one to express his gratefulness much. I know it means a lot to him to be able to come home, so I'm happy to be able to accommodate him. He also has restrictions about dogs, and I have the only dog-free home (and I always will due to allergies).

lee676, I knew someone would tell me it's a building code violation! It does meet code in my state (as explained above). The range is a couple inches from the wall and the closest burner is about 5" from the wall. Thanks for your concern, though.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2013 at 9:22AM
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Looks very beautiful.

You can maybe install a triangular (or rectangle reaching the top of the wall cabinet) shaped backsplash on the wall beside the range.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2013 at 10:47AM
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Looks really nice! What is the greenish paint color on the walls? I really like it!

    Bookmark   April 19, 2013 at 3:54PM
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I'll have to add the wall color to the original post. It's Sherwin Williams Comfort Gray.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2013 at 4:28PM
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sorry, missed the bit about your state code & manuf. recommendations

    Bookmark   April 19, 2013 at 4:35PM
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Very nice ! I copied much of your primary kitchen layout for our main kitchen (especially love the 8ft window) and now this is exactly perfect for the MIL apt!

Your remodels have certainly been to my benefit :).

    Bookmark   April 19, 2013 at 6:03PM
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Lee676, I wouldn't expect you to read all that. I am grateful that you pointed out a potential hazard.

Miruca, I'm always here for you! Let me know if you need a mudroom design.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2013 at 8:35PM
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Lol - I do need a mudroom design!

    Bookmark   April 20, 2013 at 6:16AM
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Wonderful space! We are doing the same next year in our walkout lower level.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2013 at 9:56AM
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Looks great!

We're putting the same cabinets in our kitchen, and I'm wondering how you find it opening the drawers with the knobs instead of handles/pulls? I'm having a hard time finding hardware I like on the lower drawers w/ the wide stiles, but I like the look of your knobs! That never occurred to me.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2013 at 9:57AM
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modern life interiors


    Bookmark   April 20, 2013 at 11:19AM
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Wolverine2, I did that for the look and not function. I don't have a lot in those drawers right now, but I can easily open them using only one knob. My heavy dish drawer in my real kitchen has only one knob (centered), and it's easy enough to open, but a pull would be easier. Hope that helps.

Miruca, someday I'll just have to post it for you - if it's ever neat enough to photograph, that is. It's more of a wide hallway with stuff on each side, but I like the way it hides the bumpout from the refrigerator on the opposite side of the wall.

Motherof3sons, make sure you post yours when it's done. We can never see too many kitchens!

    Bookmark   April 20, 2013 at 11:57AM
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Wow. You are so out of the procrastination club. And, officially IKEAFIED!

You did this in a week?!? I wish we had an IKEA!!

It looks great! There is a ton of function packed into that wall and it manages to look fantastic to boot. I hope your visit with your brother is going well and he is appreciating the ammenities available at your new home. :)

Did you opt to go with a fullsize fridge so you can use it as back-up for yourself as well as for the guests when they come?

I hope you are not retiring from GW when I finally get to post a reveal... or even a demo... lol

    Bookmark   April 21, 2013 at 4:25PM
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It looks great, and what a joy to be done so quickly!

If you get concerned about someone using the right burners, you could some additional tile and wrap the splash around that corner, even if just a 6" or so band.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2013 at 6:19PM
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Oh wow, that looks great. Beautiful backspash too. I totally cannot get over the fact that you did that kitchen in one WEEK!! Holy moly.

I agree with the above posters that if you do want to turn it into a cook's kitchen down the road then you can easily carry the backsplash around beside the range to hood height. I've seen many kitchens like that and they look and function great, and in your case it would look especially nice as it would just finish the alcove look with the fridge against the left of the alcove.

Lovely kitchenette! Congrats!

    Bookmark   April 21, 2013 at 8:13PM
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Thanks everyone! Just to clarify, the whole thing took more like a month - I was just ready for the granite measurement in a week. Then I had to wait a couple weeks for the granite, get the plumber and electrician in there to finish up, and get the range hood installed.

Steph2000, nothing like a deadline to keep you from procrastinating! The refrigerator is 18 cu ft. It was inexpensive (less than $1000) and doesn't stick out like the full-size (26 cu ft) refrigerators. I use the freezer for overflow, but the freezer space isn't that spacious. I could see using the refrigerator for drinks or platters of food during a party or something like that.

And I don't think I'll ever retire. I love to see finished kitchens and I at least have to wait around for yours!

    Bookmark   April 22, 2013 at 10:06AM
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