This post first appeared on Brownstoner on September 23, 2014
The summer has been incredibly busy. The house is about 90 percent complete. Due to budget constraints the garden will have to wait until next year. But the good news is that the kitchen is finished! Last we left off, I had picked out a marble countertop. I’ve been living with the marble for almost a month now and so far so good. Two dinner parties with lots of red wine and accidental lemon spills and the marble is still going strong.
The marble countertop was installed by the fabricator and the entire process took about an hour. At the end of the installation the team applied a professional grade sealant on the marble. Sealant is key to keeping marble mostly stain free. It has also helped that I picked a slab of marble with lots of imperfections. My slab was already flawed, what’s a few stains here and there? Plus it was much cheaper!
The cabinets are Ikea, which I’m less than thrilled with at the moment. I already need to replace one of the drawers due to poor alignment. The dishwasher and refrigerator are both Fisher Paykel and are floor models purchased on eBay at about 60 percent off retail. The stove is NXR and was purchased at Costco. The wood floating shelves were custom made.
The shower is almost done which is the good news. But I’m starting to feel that no one listens to me. I told the guys to use black grout on all the rental kitchen back-splashes, hell, I even went to Home Depot and purchased the grout myself. I went to the house today and guess what color the grout is? White of course! I asked Carlo why did he use white grout when I explicitly told him to use black grout. His answer: “What?! You wanted black grout with white tiles? That makes no sense” Well, it seems that Carlo is also an interior designer. Anyway, I told him to make sure they use the black grout in the one bedroom kitchen. I also think it looks weird that they extended the backsplash to the side wall but at this point I’m willing to pick my battles.
A few weeks ago, my contractor changed the configuration of the studio bathroom. The new configuration actually works better than the original plan. When he changed the plan I asked him to let me know how much more tile he needed. In all honesty, I didn’t push the issue and looking back I should have been more proactive and had the measurements taken on the spot. Well, I didn’t do that and last week I got a frantic call from the project manager that they needed more tile ASAP. I went to the tile store to reorder the tile. The tile arrives the next day and my project manager goes and picks up the tile. I come by the house later the following day and to my horror the guys are putting up the wrong tile. Seems that the tile store filled the order with the wrong tile and the contractor nor the project manager checked the box before leaving the store or even before bringing it to the house.
All this was made worse because the previous day I had conversations with the project manger and the contractor about being proactive and being able to order things like tile correctly without me being involved. Anyway, I made the guys take down the incorrect tile but the tile store is orthodox and therefor not open on Friday and Saturday. I waited until Sunday to make the changes and asked them to check the boxes twice. The guys are going to put up the correct tile tomorrow, I’ll keep you posted.