Thursday, August 21, 2014

Time to ReStore Some Light

One big issue with our kitchen and laundry rooms is that they are very dark. The kitchen has no windows (the laundry has one small one), so not much outside light gets through to them on a regular basis. Even after painting and cleaning them both up, they still needed some sort of connection with the outside.

Originally, the kitchen was the back of the house. There is a large window-sized opening that now opens into our addition. Before the addition, the window would have been a nice view into the backyard. We love the giant addition and the space it gives us, we just kind of miss what could have been a bright element of the original space.

To remedy this, I have been searching for a replacement for this guy.

That kind of dirty looking door is the back door out of our kitchen/laundry room. It is a dull space that lives on the same wall as our washer and dryer. This picture might help orient you.

That little window is the same one that has the two bright yellow curtains on the inside of the window. 

This is obviously not a space we use very often. It is on the opposite side of the addition then the porch, meaning it gets kind of left out. Honestly, if we didn't have the hose over there, we would probably never go over there at all.

Thankfully, the door itself could be very useful. It would be a perfect area for a door with a window! For the past six months, I have been visiting our local ReStore looking for just that. A 31.5in x 72in. door with a window that would brighten up our kitchen and laundry room. I even bought two doors... they ended up not fitting and we had to return them. I had almost given up hope.

Then, as it happens, Mom came to town. Mom is really good at walking in somewhere and going, "Oh, would this work?" and it's totally what you've been looking for for six months. We stopped by the ReStore on a whim and guess what.

The first door she walked up to.

"I bet this would fit"

Of course it did.

The door was then quickly purchased for the exorbitant price of $15, loaded into the car, and brought home.

Scott began by taking the old door down.

We then had to line up the new door and see how difficult it would be to hang. We ended up using the old hinges to make this part of the process a little easier.

There was old weather stripping at the bottom of the door which would make it too low for the frame, so we took that off next. It was well past it's prime, so it would have been replaced anyway.

We then attached it to the hinges that were already hung and checked it for fit. It was actually level and fit really well the first try. Huzzah!

I took the door knobs off of the old door and brought them to Scott who started to assemble them again in the new door. As he worked on that, I observed that the door needed a little bit of love. The windows were kind of dirty and there were a few dents in the metal. This little guy cracked us up, though.

Obviously a little past it's prime.
After one door knob was assembled, he re-drilled the receiving hole in the frame because these fixtures were going to be higher than they were originally. He then added the other knob and repeated the process. 

When it was all together, it felt like a breath of fresh air in the kitchen. It doesn't seem like it would make a huge difference, but this is what the kitchen felt like the next day with no lights on.

I know, it still looks dark, but it's really a huge step in the right direction for lightening up this space (because think about how dark it was before the window. It was a cave kitchen). One of the best parts is that it acts as a viewing window for the birds nest that is built into the soffit of the roof. We can check on the bird family any time now!

Since it's been up, I have also given it a nice, clean coat of white paint so it doesn't feel so second hand. It really does feel like a new door! Eventually I'll paint the outside of the door, but since that isn't something we can really see on a regular basis, I'm going to leave it how it is for the time being.

This is not the only door adventure we have had lately. Stay tuned for more updates!

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