Countertop Install-part Deaux-is this it?

bbtrixMay 28, 2014

Some of you have followed my marble installation woes through my previous thread and mentions on other countertop install threads, so I thought I'd share our progress. After my marble island was removed to never return we had a huge dilemma to find something within a short time frame that could co-exist with the natural materials we already had. It wou ld have been very difficult to find a granite, quartz, or solid surface to work with my perimeter marble and the lead time would have been intolerable. Wood was one of my original choices so I revisited many of the GW threads about walnut and very quickly decided that was it. Per some other GWers, I researched the online companies and really liked what I saw with Craft-Art. I took the plunge and ordered my DIY counter sight unseen only based on GW conversations. My black walnut arrived today and I am very happy so far.

The wood is beautiful. Since we purchased it as a DIY install it comes as two pieces of planks, planed, knots filled, sanded with one coat of waterlox. We still have a lot of work to do with installing the sink, joining the two pieces, finishing the edge, and many applications of waterlox, but I look forward to the process. DH doesn't share my sentiments because he is quite ready to be done with my list, but we will soon be there (though I think he likes it!);)

There is a burl wood section that looks 3D when the light us just right.

Light effects the color of the wood tremendously as well as my space. We are flooded with variations of light throughout the day and the walnut changes from golden to dark brown depending on lighting.

We have at least a week of DIY to finish our island, but I am very hopeful that we will not only finally have a working kitchen but be extremely pleased with the result.

(Edited to add link to Part I)

Here is a link that might be useful: Link to Previous Thread - Part 1

This post was edited by bbtrix on Sat, May 31, 14 at 17:35

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Errant_gw

That is absolutely gorgeous!!

    Bookmark   May 28, 2014 at 11:10PM
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romy718

What a gorgeous piece of walnut & it looks great with your marble. Would love to see pics of your upcoming install progress.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2014 at 11:16PM
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bbtrix

Errant, thanks so much!

Romy, thanks! Your post that experimented with the craft-art cutting board along with several other posters really influenced my decision. I'm going to try to document as we go. Sometimes it's hard as I am DH's "apprentice" so I'm actively involved in grunt work! I'll be sure to post updates!

    Bookmark   May 28, 2014 at 11:45PM
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Texas_Gem

So beautiful! I just love walnut.
May I ask, what is your flooring? I love the pattern!

    Bookmark   May 28, 2014 at 11:51PM
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bbtrix

Texas Gem, the flooring is Natural Acacia.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2014 at 12:13AM
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cat_mom

Love that walnut!!!!!

    Bookmark   May 29, 2014 at 12:46AM
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fishymom

That wood is gorgeous! What a beautiful addition to your kitchen, it will be so worth all the work when it is done!

    Bookmark   May 29, 2014 at 6:29AM
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gr8daygw

Gorgeous!

    Bookmark   May 29, 2014 at 6:33AM
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Mags438

The countertop is absolutely beautiful. Sometimes things happen for a reason... Your plan B, looks like plan A.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2014 at 6:58AM
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Holly- Kay

Oh my, the walnut is glorious! I am so anxious to see it completed.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2014 at 7:06AM
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lcskaisgir

Beautiful!

    Bookmark   May 29, 2014 at 8:50AM
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a2gemini

Beautiful piece of wood - I can almost see the 3D effect (even if I don't have 3D vision).
Beautiful floor as well. I might have to look into that floor!
Thanks for sharing and looking forward to your final reveal!

    Bookmark   May 29, 2014 at 10:38AM
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ck_squared

Gosh, I love walnut! That is one gorgeous countertop! Good luck with the installation and I look forward to seeing the final result.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2014 at 11:02AM
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annkh_nd

Fabulous. I wanted to say gorgeous and beautiful, but I wanted to be different from the other responses!

I think it's perfect in your kitchen, and I think it would be a joy to work on (both finishing and using).

    Bookmark   May 29, 2014 at 11:59AM
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bbtrix

Thank you all for your kind words! As Mags said, "Sometimes things happen for a reason..." Fate works in mysterious ways!

Annkh, I think I'm going to enjoy working on it immensely! There is something about the pride of creation that makes the joy of using it so much more rewarding.

Today we finished up other loose ends so we can fully focus on the walnut. We did work on exact placement, moving the two pieces around to find the tightest seam fit, and planned out how we would tackle the Stages sink cutout. DH has a plan and he typically works very fast once he gets going!

    Bookmark   May 29, 2014 at 7:16PM
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mgmum

It looks fantastic! I can't echo enough the other comments that have been made. I think it's perfect!

    Bookmark   May 29, 2014 at 10:44PM
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bpollen

Beautiful! It works so well with your floors. Looks lovely and warm, but so practical, too.

What color white paint is that on your cabinets? It's very pretty without being too stark or yellow-y.

    Bookmark   May 30, 2014 at 1:01AM
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bbtrix

Thanks, MGMum and bpollen!

Bpollen, the cabinets are Ikea Lindingo. I color matched the cabinets to my trim at Sherwin Williams and can give you the formula if you're interested. I've also read on forums that it matches BM Simply White.

    Bookmark   May 30, 2014 at 11:06AM
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bbtrix

Good enough progress today...

Measured template, measured, measured, and measured again. Roughed in the sink. Took a while with a circular saw and jigsaw as the blade easily got too hot with the thick wood. He undercut a very little bit as we are wanting a fraction less than the called for zero reveal. Will fine tune with the router.

Also received a wonderful gift from Craft-Art today, a beautiful zebra wood cutting board. Looks great on the walnut.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2014 at 1:56AM
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bluerdgddrs

Bbtrix I think it's looking great! I absolutely love walnut, so rich looking. Do you know when I first looked at your kitchen I had no idea that they were ikea cabinets. They look fabulous, I am always stunned. Love what you have going on, the sink in the island looks great what is it? I'm assuming Kohler ;). Thanks for all your help again but it doesn't look as if I can return the favor-you don't need it. Great job.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2014 at 6:04AM
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romy718

Looking beautiful! Love the sink & how nice of CraftArt. Thanks for the pics.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2014 at 9:45AM
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bbtrix

blue, thanks! I'm not trying to disguise the fact that they are Ikea as they're so extremely practical for this project with me wanting comfort and functionality in this temporary home without the associated costs, but it doesn't hurt to dress them up. It actually feels good knowing the Ikea look doesn't totally stand out. I sure love the storage functionality! The sink is Kohler Stages 45. I surely can use your help and others as I take on the task of pendants and counter stools!

romy, again thanks for all your support! I absolutely love the range Kleen mats, and bought a bunch. They are great for protection during construction too! Craft-art is bending over backwards to make this a good experience for us and I am quite thankful for their gift. This walnut is quite a buy, half as much as my marble was-and it was inexpensive as stones go.

I'll have another project for me once we're done, creating some type of bench with the glorious hunk of walnut I have left from the sink cutout.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2014 at 12:42PM
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amck2

Love it! I think you're converting a lot of GW'ers to wood.....

    Bookmark   May 31, 2014 at 1:53PM
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Linelle

bbtrix, amazingly beautiful counter! Was it scary cutting into it for the sink? I don't think I could have watched. :) The cutting board is fantastic. They gave it to you?

I hope you take lots of photos and document the entire process. I really think walnut on the island with marble perimeter is the better look.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2014 at 2:00PM
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lavender_lass

It's perfect! And that zebra wood cutting board looks wonderful with the walnut :)

    Bookmark   May 31, 2014 at 2:19PM
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juddgirl2

Beautiful counters, beautiful kitchen!

    Bookmark   May 31, 2014 at 4:32PM
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Skyangel23

wow. That looks fantastic! Even without all the final stain finish applications, it looks gorgeous w/ your cabs and countertop. I never saw your other choice, but I can't imagine something else looking better. :-)

    Bookmark   May 31, 2014 at 5:08PM
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bbtrix

It was scary watching. I snuck a few pix as I didn't want to make him nervous, then disappeared. The walnut is very hard and the dust can be a problem if inhaled. He's working outside today. I do love watching him work and am learning about all his fabulous tools.

They gave me a choice of walnut or zebra wood cutting board. I already have the walnut board that comes with the sink and thought the zebra would add nice contrast.

And I agree that the walnut on the island is a better look. It goes nicely with the floors whereas I was worried about the marble island clashing since the floors turned out much wilder than the sample.

DH had our good friend come by who is a furniture maker to discuss our various joining options as we wanted to do what is best for this species and accommodate for movement, expansion/contraction. He asked why we didn't contact him, that he had access to black walnut and could have made it! Doh! We likely would not have gotten it in our timeframe though. So I asked him about making me a round extension table since I was looking for one and they are difficult to find. So that is a good outcome, I'll also have a walnut hand-crafted dining table. I'm excited! He has made quite a few pieces for us and does great work.

Back to work documenting. He's cutting biscuits and T-bolt holes today.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2014 at 5:30PM
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feisty68

Bbtrix, your island looks stunning :) . I'm sure people are just running their hands over the wood. It is so nice to have something that has depth and complexity on a surface like that. My neighbour used John Boos oil over a cheap butcherblock worktop island counter and it turned out really well. Maybe some things are meant to be.

I want to have a cocktail party at my new island. Make some complicated appies and drinks and have people swarming the island :) .

    Bookmark   June 1, 2014 at 3:43PM
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bbtrix

Feisty, me too! Can't wait to have a party!

    Bookmark   June 1, 2014 at 6:22PM
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bbtrix

Here we go...we're getting close! It's been an extremely busy couple of weeks full of trials and tribulations. I wanted to share a first look at my soon to be favorites of my kitchen. Will update the install details soon.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 1:20AM
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romy718

The color & grain of the walnut-gorgeous!

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 1:29AM
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bluerdgddrs

I love those faucets, I always "see" a dog. The walnut has turned out great. Did you put a sealer or something on it because it is glowing! Very pretty, congrats!

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 6:53AM
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Trebruchet

bbtrix:

It looks like your sink cut-out is suffering a wood burn on the right side end grain. In your 6th post you said "Took a while with a circular saw and jigsaw as the blade easily got too hot with the thick wood." A sharp blade with the proper tooth configuration will have no trouble whatsoever ripping and crosscutting walnut without burning.

You could try scraping this off, sanding will take forever, or using your sink cut-out end grain as a test, have your fabricator make a very shallow pass with a new high quality router bit like those sold by Wesley Tools. If this works, he could make a jig that would remove a 32nd or so and the burn from the cut-out.

Have him profile the top edge while he's at it too.

Here is a link that might be useful: Preventing router burn

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 9:32AM
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feisty68

Looking good bbtrix!

    Bookmark   June 10, 2014 at 3:58PM
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raymondtwp

This looks amazing. Really professional looking!!!

Love their wood. I'm a personal fan of Craft Art's too. Glad you had a good experience. They actually sent me a free Maple cutting board but I really like your Zebra wood one.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2014 at 1:20PM
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BeastBaby

dying to see a bbtrix finished pic - can anyone tell me (or bbtrix if you see this!) if you have a finished kitchen pic/thread?

I am trying to do almost exactly what you did I think! looove the craft-art walnut wood, too.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 11:44AM
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bbtrix

BeastBaby, I have finished the island but not the kitchen, so I have not done a finished kitchen thread yet. We've had many interruptions this summer which has slowed progress to a stall, the major event being a labrador puppy whom usurps all of my time right now. Your name reminds me of him!

I still plan to document my entire process here, especially to share the difficulties of our particular install. The size of the island and sink did make it more difficult, but I would not have it any other way. I put my last coat of waterlox on a month ago so I've been able to enjoy my sink, though we are being very careful during this cure period. The process is very labor and time intensive but worth it if you are a DIYer.

Here are a few pix. It's a bright sunny day and light is pouring in the skylights, so it's hard to capture a good exposure. I ended up staying with the original Waterlox rather than mixing with Satin for the last two coats. I did not like working with the satin nor how it diminished the grain. Excuse the balloons; I'm trying to select pendants!

Let me know if you have specific questions. I'd be happy to help.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 1:05PM
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feisty68

What a beautiful room - the ceilings! the skylight! the natural sun! Your kitchen looks so great - the island is quite a focal point, and contrasts nicely with the lovely cabinets and countertop of the perimeter :)

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 1:25PM
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bbtrix

Thanks, Feisty! It's slow coming together but I do love the space. It "feels" good! Here's a shot of the puppy half of the room. I've only put minimal furniture back since he is a chewing machine!

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 1:49PM
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feisty68

I love the feeling of standing at my island looking out a big window - I see you have the same set-up!

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 2:16PM
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bbtrix

Yup, and I wanted to flank my range hood with windows too. A dear friend is a realtor, and she advised me to do the uppers instead. The idea of limited uppers was foreign to her, but she knows the market in this area. That's why I went with mostly glass uppers as I felt it was a compromise. My kitchen was previously very dark! There are French doors to the right of the stove wall, so there's a nice view from the lone chair.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 2:30PM
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feisty68

The glass uppers add interest. Also, with your high ceiling and skylights, the uppers don't feel oppressive at all.

(Very different vibe than my just-under-8-ft ceiling with one small kitchen window ;) )

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 4:29PM
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romy718

That walnut (& your kitchen) is gorgeous. Remembering how you ended up with that walnut top & how stressful it was, it couldn't have turned out more beautiful.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 5:04PM
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bbtrix

feisty, I know how important light is to you also, and how hard you've worked to make the most of the light you have. You do have a lovely window and I love the transformation of your space-can't wait to see more. I hope your DH is better soon!

romy, thanks! It was very stressful and I appreciate your support throughout. I do love the walnut but find myself looking back at the marble island pix wondering what would have been! ;)

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 11:32PM
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mgmum

Wow! What a gorgeous combination! Looks amazing!

    Bookmark   August 15, 2014 at 9:14AM
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countryatheart

Bbtrix-your island countertop is tdf! Beautiful kitchen.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2014 at 12:13PM
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