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RE: Can I see your "Command Center" in Kitchen? (Follow-Up #15)

posted by: buehl on 10.28.2012 at 04:13 pm in Kitchens Forum

I struggled with this for a long time. When we redid our kitchen we had a "Message Center" planned, but when we encountered issues with the measurements, it had to be eliminated so the pantry could have that space (the pantry is still smaller than it was originally supposed to be a foot along the back wall). So, we came up with the idea of a "Message Center Niche" embedded in the side wall of our pantry + magnets on the garage door that opens into the FR but next to the kitchen.

The Niche contains a paper calendar - yes, even though we are a very, very tech-oriented family, we still use a paper calender for the "family calendar". Whenever my kids or DH ask, "can I do xxx on yyy?", my first response is, "have you checked the calendar?" Once I tell them it's OK to do something, I tell them to put it on the calendar. This way we ALL know what is going on - not just the person with the calendar on the computer or phone. If something's not on the calendar, there's no guarantee about it taking place (within reason, of course!)

As to the papers. You really have to keep ahead of them. I found the best thing to do was two-fold: Each child has a small box where all the papers they bring home go - unless it's something that needs an immediate signature/return the next day - then it gets handed directly to me where I then immediately "process" it and give it back to the child to put in his/her backpack for the next day.

I try to do a quick run-through of the papers each night. Those that are a waste of paper, are recycled (you know those - attend this seminar at the school system's headquarters next month, join the boy scouts (why did my DD get those???), etc.)

Finally, the items that either need attention, but not immediate attention, and those that are useful are put on the garage door - with the magnet for the appropriate child. I have two very heavy-duty "school bus" clip magnets on the garage door - one for each child. Their location is such that we all see it in the morning when the kids head off to the school bus and during the evening when I try to get everyone ready for school the next day. I try to go through the magnets at least every couple of days...

Now, I only have two children, so this may not work for more than two. I admit it wasn't a perfect system, but it's worked pretty well over time. This year, my DS is away at college, so now it's just my DD - and she's the more organized of the two (actually, she's usually the most organized in the family!) - so it's gotten much better (I don't even use the boxes anymore.)

Message Center Niche:

Message Center Niche Closeup (opening 20

It consists of:

  • Calendar to keep track of sports practices & games, school events, music lessons, concerts, family happenings, project due dates, meetings, etc.

  • Land line phone & answering machine in a central our case b/w the FR & Kitchen, which also puts it central to the Garage entrance & Foyer/front door. The phone connection & electrical outlets are inside the pantry...there's a hole behind the phone that the phone & charger are snaked through and into the pantry.

  • This location is not only for answering the phone, but also so we can see if there are messages when we come into the house. During the remodel, the phone & answering machine were relocated to the Office/Library and we often forgot to check for messages!

  • Keys since the Niche is across from the Garage entrance & a pretty straight shot from the Foyer/front door. We need a visible & easily accessible place!

  • Message pads (sticky notes) & pens/pencils for taking messages/leaving messages.

  • Charging station for my phone since I will forget it if it's not w/the keys!

Inside the pantry....

Message Center Niche Power Source, Inside Pantry


to do on the wall by the garage. Thank you Buehl!!
clipped on: 10.28.2012 at 05:35 pm    last updated on: 10.28.2012 at 05:35 pm

RE: Close-up photos of DIY painted cabs? (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: MrsShayne on 08.30.2012 at 12:03 pm in Kitchens Forum

I painted my oak cabinets because I HATED the color of the wood. These aren't the best close up pics but I can take more tonight and post. I love how mine turned out. You can see some grain from the oak but I hear if you use wood filler all over (and sand) then the grain is unseen.

I used CabinetCoat (paint and primer in one) and my primer (2 coats) then I used Ben. Moore's Advanced paint (2 more coats, so 4 coats total). BM's Advanced paint leveled beautifully and it's NOT oil-based (thank you Jesus). I HATE oil paint. The smell is horrible!

good luck!


You can see some grain here-


Back up-


Here is a link that might be useful: kitchen remodel - b&a


clipped on: 08.31.2012 at 09:33 pm    last updated on: 08.31.2012 at 09:34 pm

RE: Close-up photos of DIY painted cabs? (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: CEFreeman on 08.30.2012 at 12:14 pm in Kitchens Forum

I don't have pictures yet, but I can tell you you get what you put into it. (MrsShayne, your kitchen is lovely.)

If it's too much work, you'll get a too DIY job. Plain and simple.


  • Sanded
  • Primed w/ STIX, an Inselx adhesive, oil based primer, now owned by BM. Oil based primer is severely different than oil based paint. For some reason, even easier clean-up.
  • sanded & primed again.
  • painted w/ Cabinet Coat, (acrylic) another Inselx product now owned by BM.
    sanded & painted again.

    Note that CabinetCoat is made for woodwork and dries hard as nails. It cleans beautifully. I will use it for everything I possibly can.

    On a few pieces that were definitely not top of the line, I used Pore-o-pac, too. It fills the grain beautifully.

  • Insert before the priming steps: applying, sanding, applying & sanding this again. Glass finish.

    The easiest way to get over your prejudice is to do something, a door, or something the way you want to: Half-assed, er, oops, I mean Quick & easy. Then, take another piece and do it right. That will convince you.

    Remember you don't and can't do it all at once. Plan time to let things sit and cure. I found if I painted at night, by the time I slept, went to work and came home again, things were really nicely ready to do another coat on. The weekends I double shifted & they sat for 3 days? Like Buttha! With proper priming, it's almost a pleasure to apply the paint it goes on so smoothly!

    If your time is worth more than the investment, pay someone to do it right.

  • NOTES:

    clipped on: 08.31.2012 at 09:33 pm    last updated on: 08.31.2012 at 09:33 pm

    RE: Trying to update 90s kitchen and SO overwhelmed! PICs and lay (Follow-Up #15)

    posted by: boxerpups on 03.03.2012 at 04:45 pm in Kitchens Forum

    Hi Kentucly7,

    Glad to hear you are safe.

    That wall paper does not look so terrible. Of course you
    have pizza friendly labor that could help you rip that
    down and make this kitchen reno a family affair.

    Glad to hear you have a notebook. Another feature is on
    GW. Do you see the green leaves and scissors in the upper
    right corner? Clip this post, email this post, what is this?...

    That is this cool feature where you can save your favorites.
    And have an online notebook per say.

    If Gel staining is not your thing, there is also the idea
    of painting. But painting oak can be tricky as oak has
    grain and grain can peek through. That was I suggested
    stain. Because with stain any grain will look like a beautiful
    additon to the wood.


    I agree about granite. Granite in that kitchen might be
    doable with your budget. Save money on the cabs and spend
    it on the granite.

    Why are you changing the floors? Are they damaged?
    They look fine to me.

    As for the island. If you like it, keep it. Notice the
    below picture kept the island in their renovation.

    A few more ideas hope they help.

    This is not a change in the cabinets but more a change
    in counters but notice they kept the island.





    Painted the oak into this....







    LOVE these peninsula ideas.
    clipped on: 03.03.2012 at 05:40 pm    last updated on: 03.03.2012 at 05:43 pm

    RE: Anybody Paint Their Own Kitchen? (Follow-Up #26)

    posted by: igloochic on 02.20.2008 at 01:20 pm in Kitchens Forum

    Thanks for posting the clipping (you can find more information on how I paint cabinets and trim by clicking "My clippings" on the name Igloochic).

    I have painted....geeze let me count...four kitchens and six bathrooms (cabinets). Each time I've lived in the place and used the cabinets so I know that the paint not only "stuck" but that it wasn't prone to nicks and scratches. Done sticks :)

    I have used a couple types of paint. The above clipping is describing my current favorite by Sherwin Williams. It's the first pairing (primer and paint) that I've found which totally eliminates sanding (I prep with a quick washing with TSP). Both products are latex, which is so much easier to work with, and both are hard as nails. (I have used this combo in the new place on all woodwork). The above post is for a color that is a very very deep dark chocolate. You could use the same paint in any color. I do suggest tinting the primer.

    For a high grain wood I like to do two coats of primer and two coats of paint. Be careful not to overload your brush so that you don't end up with drips. Between each coat, be sure to review your previous work for any finish errors (bugs in paint, drips, fingertips etc). Lightly sand those down before adding another coat of paint.

    I used to use an oil based primer (kilz) and then ralph lauren (in high gloss) for the top coats. That worked well, and always stood the test of time, but I do prefer alatex based paint.

    I once had the cabinets sprayed by a painter...I was not happy with the finish and wouldn't do it again, but that could just be picky me.

    I will say that painting cabinets is a lot A LOT of work, but in my opinion, highly worth doing. It will cost you a few hundred bucks for paint and supplies and you need to be patient and detailed, but if you are...and you have good boxes to work with, it's worth the time if you want "new cabinets" (or at least the look) at a fraction (a real small fraction) of the cost of new cabinets. I've never regretted the work at all.

    To keep yourself sane, try working on one small bank of cabinets at a time. For instance, the island. Unload it as necessary (I normally do not paint the inside of cabinets so I don't always unload everything, but instead tape plastic inside the frame so that I can do the frame, and the inner portion of the door frame without hitting the contents). Get the least tacky blue tape and label each cabinet and corresponding door A, B, C etc (put one piece of tape on the cabinet inside that says "A" and the other that says "A" on the door that came off). Take the hardwar off the doors (hinges etc) and put that inside the cabinet it came off of (tape down if necessary). Don't throw it all in a's not always the same and you'll have wonky doors). I don't recommend changing hardware (hinges) but if you're going to change your handles and they don' fit the existing holes, now's the time to putty full and sand down flat. I like to use a hanger and make a hook with it and hang the doors from a rafter in the garage. This way you can paint both sides at once (let each side dry between painting though before doing the other side). DO NOT STACK UP DOORS THAT ARE DRY! Let them cure a week before stacking!!! (I prefer never to stack!).

    Anyhoo, do the island frame, toe kicks, etc. PRep well with painters tape first and go for it. Then do these doors then put back together before you tackle another portion. It will make life more livable. I like to be kind (no stickers, tacks, slamming etc) for the first 30 days or so after the doors are back on to really let the paint cure, but that's just me. I've not always done this. I do like to replace the little plastic or felt pieces that keep the door from slamming into the cabinet frame so that you don't have paint stuck to paint as it cures.

    Then move on to the next bank...say the left of the sink on top only...etc. It takes time, but frankly you have a very nice foundation to begin with (lovely kitchen) and if you like the layout...go for the paint job :) Just know it takes time, but it's worth it in the end really.


    clipped on: 05.04.2008 at 10:53 am    last updated on: 05.04.2008 at 10:53 am

    RE: Anybody Paint Their Own Kitchen? (Follow-Up #20)

    posted by: seedsilly on 02.19.2008 at 09:15 pm in Kitchens Forum

    Everyone's painted cabinet examples look so nice, so professional! I'm thinking of going red someday. Sarschlos remodeler, do you remember the color red you used? Very lovely.

    Also, Igloochic has lots of good advice on painting cabinets. The following is one of her posts:

    "I only use high quality nylon (Purdy) brushes. I prefer them for wood finishes. They cost more but they last forever! I did have the primer tinted, and tinted it's kind of light purple color LOL so it looks funny until you start putting more paint on. They hate tinting it, but make them do it anyhoo!
    Don't let anyone talk you into anything different (they always try to with me and it's never worked out). This is exactly what I use:

    Sherwin Williams PrepRite ProBlock Interior Exterior Seals and Bonds, Latex primer (it's the most expensive...but if you don't like sanding or using chemicals to prep, this is the stuff for you!). I've never had to sand or strip first using this on the worst shiny stuff.

    Sherwin Williams Exterior All Surface Glass Enamel
    Code IFC411X
    Woodsy Brown 100% mix formula 2924 (color code)
    They use Acrylic Latex HIGH GLOSS Ultradeep base 6403-25932
    Code A41T00204

    Do not take a less glossy finish. This finish dries HARD and rich :) (There's a man joke in there somewhere but I'll avoid making it)

    I use one coat primer and let it dry a day at least, then two coats (one day between at least) of paint with a good Purdy brush (which is important). With just one coat the grain still effects the paint, but with the two on top of the primer you get that nice smooth look :)

    I'm a paint freak, so forgive me for saying this if you know. Don't use rollers for wood. I like a 1 1/2 inch and a 2 1/2 or 3" brush at the most. The smaller works well on the small areas so you don't drip or oversmear the sides of the project."


    clipped on: 05.03.2008 at 12:35 pm    last updated on: 05.03.2008 at 12:36 pm

    RE: Pics of DIY remodel for 5K (Follow-Up #48)

    posted by: holly13 on 04.01.2008 at 05:01 am in Kitchens Forum

    I used BM Linen White in a latex semi-gloss. My cabs were oak so I cleaned them with TSP and sanded them with one of those Mouse Sanders (you know it looks like a little iron?) The pointed shape of the sander was perfect for getting into the recessed corners of the doors. I used 2 coats of latex primer and sanded and caulked like mad. Then 2 to 3 coats of the paint. I used one of those small foam rollers most of the time, but on the last coat I used
    a good chinex brush (recommended at paint store.)
    I used cardboard boxes (like gift boxes)to elevate the doors wbile I painted so I could get the edges. I had a large table set up in my basement. It took 2 weeks and I worked on 6 pieces at a a time.
    Here are more pics.
    kitchen after4
    kitchen after3
    kitchen after2
    kitchen after


    also used hidden european hinges from Rockler.
    clipped on: 05.03.2008 at 12:20 pm    last updated on: 05.03.2008 at 12:21 pm