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Sabjimata Finished Kitchen : Functional Island Galley

13 years ago

Whaaaa! Finally....I did it! I got my finished kitchen cleaned, photographed, blogged and now...POSTED!

It took me a few days to get it onto my blog, so forgive me for just linking and not totally reposting here. The blog post I am linking is my "Details" page. On the bottom of that is a link to how I arranged my storage and also a "Before & After" photo-a-thon.

We did a lot during the remodel--including updating the majority of our electrical throughout the house as well as replacing all the windows. Our house is located "in town" in Alachua, Florida. It is a semi-rural town 20 minutes from University of Florida.

I have no idea what the design trends are in this area other than it has been hit hard by the housing crisis. I think there is a fair amount of light maple shaker style cabs and dark/uba tuba granite. I definitely brought my Northern sensibilities into our remodel.

Our house is, like I mentioned, in town--which isn't much of a town. Anyway, town is pretty much a neighborhood of 1950's/60's Florida block homes with a few 100 year old wooden cracker homes mixed in. Due to the era it was built in and the concrete blockness of it, our house is, at best, "modern," although not much design-wise ever capitalized off that.

We moved supporting walls to make the kitchen bigger and the dining room more functional. We spent between $65 and $70k for the remodel. Personally, I think we got a lot of kitchen bang for the buck.

The kitchen is an island galley and I am calling the style "Modern Classic." Whatever lol. I was inspired by a lot of the white kitchens out there, but admittedly am not such a fancy gal to go full on Peacock. I like quirk but didn't want to over-quirk to such an extent that we would get sick of it.

A lot of my choices were "must haves" for functionality--I cook pretty much everything from scratch and we are huge homebodies. But I totally made style choices based on price--save for my Anthropologie curtains ;)

Blah blah blah, not so interesting. Below is the link, if you have a question, I will gladly open my chatterbox.

Thanks for all the info I gleaned lurking for years on this forum. And when the loan was approved and I started feeling the urgency of *I need the answer now* kind of questions, you guys were there for me with your expertise and opinions. XOXOXO

This website is a great resource and hope my kitchen helps someone else out one day. Like someone just posted on here--this is the most active forum on the Garden Web!

Wishing everyone good times in the kitchen!


Here is a link that might be useful: sabjimata finished kitchen

Comments (56)

  • bostonpam
    13 years ago

    WOW - what a transformation! I love it. Your soapstone sink is unbelievable. I wish I had room for one. Have you had 2 or 3 people working at it at once? I love the marble, the tile, the floor, the vision... I could go on and on. Love your mirror - I need mirrors and will check out your Pier 1 find. What a great kitchen - enjoy!!

  • Susied3
    13 years ago

    It is absolutely stunning! So different, unique, and LOVE LOVE LOVE that soapstone sink! Love all the mid-century influences in that kitchen! I just love seeing someone go outside the box and do a fantastic/ non/traditional kitchen! I'm jealous.... Oh, and did I mention your soapstone sink?

    Congrats, it's a keeper!

  • chicagoans
    13 years ago

    dang baby - that's magazine-worthy! Except that it's so much more personalized and creative than what you'd see in a magazine! I'm coming over right now to take a bath in that fabulous sink. hope ya don't mind.

  • jakabedy
    13 years ago

    That is fabulous! A true example of thinking outside the box. I like how you blended traditional, modern and vintage into one cohesive look. Well done!!

  • chris45ny
    13 years ago

    Good decision to open up the space. It's incredible. Love that you were bold enough to mix up tiles, hardware, counter materials, etc. Your kitchen is truly one of a kind. Enjoy!!!

  • rookie_2010
    13 years ago

    I just almost fell out of my chair!!!!!!!!
    I've been keeping a lookout for your finished pics, I new your kitchen was going to be fabulous!!!!! It's the most fabulous and unique kitchen I've ever seen and I think it's the most functional of any fabulous kitchen I've ever seen, ever. The shot of the soapstone sink with the mirror is the photo that almost sent me off my chair. The interesting blend of styles is no easy effect to pull off, you hit the mark on everything! You did an unbelievable job! I read your blog and know that you'll be cooking dishes totally worthy of your kitchen. Congratulations!

  • bmorepanic
    13 years ago

    'cuse me but,

    I mean its really great and everything, I loved your use of tile and stone but, well, ok nice sense of color too and I love the bigger than a lake sink but

    You invite us all over to look at the kitchen without even grocery store lemon bars or tea. Where is the pie? The warm croissants spread with that jam stuff you used to have as a header picture? Not a cake, not a cookie, not even eggplant?

    So disappointing to be invited over by a professional foodie and just fed 3 acres of marble - nice lookin' marble, mind you, but still....

  • jterrilynn
    13 years ago

    Love the mix!!!

  • flwrs_n_co
    13 years ago

    Sabjimata, your kitchen is amazing!! So very functional and beautiful, quirky and nontraditional, yet modern all at the same time! Your lighting scheme is very unique and such a change from the usual. It took me quite a few times through yours pics to see where you used all the different hardware--love it! I have a couple of questions: 1) In the pics, the tile on the wall with the ss shelves looks aqua/blue, not mint green as it looks by the stoves--is it the same color and the lighting just makes it look a different color (Love the green BTW.) 2) Your hood looks like it's mounted quite a bit higher than other hoods I've seen--do you find it captures steam/vapors well?

    I'm going to keep coming back to your pics to study them--thanks so much for taking the time to post all these great pics & pertinent info! Looking forward to continue seeing your kitchen in use on your blog!

  • Gena Hooper
    13 years ago

    I don't have enough wows. What an incredible mix of modern and retro. I'm absolutely in awe of how you used interesting, eclectic, individual design choices that all work so well together. And of course, I'm lusting after your space. The endless miles of counter and tons of storage and that incredible hunka-hunka-burnin'-soapstone-love sink! Fabulous!!

  • wallycat
    13 years ago


  • sochi
    13 years ago

    Sabjimata, I'm in awe. What a wonderful, unique and well thought through kitchen. And it's beautiful to boot. I just love it. As a few people have mentioned, I especially love the mix of modern/retro etc. The colours are wonderful, the sinks, the counter ... I haven't explored the pictures fully yet, I'm waiting for tonight when I can savour it.


  • honorbiltkit
    13 years ago

    Sabjimata, having seen a few previews, I am not in the least surprised that the different drummer you march to grooves like crazy. The kitchen is just as superb as a whole as in its parts. And it sounds like your cuisine is as good.

  • plllog
    13 years ago

    I'm with B'more! Yeah, we know you have a gorgeous kitchen, and it is nice to see it all done and lovely (and I still love the mirror, and still love the range/sink partial wall, and the soapstone manger--um...sink--and everything), but for someone who is always cooking and baking enough to fill the gigantor sink......well? Where IS everything????

  • sabjimata
    Original Author
    13 years ago

    Awwwww! How ridiculously kind of you guys!

    Sandlll-- thanks for mentioning the clocks. My husband still cannot understand this purchase and still likes to make fun of me over my clocks. Thankfully, they were only $30-50 a piece so he at least can't complain about the expense ;)

    Noellabelle--For years I used our flannel wipes as napkins! Chinese prefolds are so absorbent, more people should bring them into the kitchen. I use birdseye diapers as cheesecloths and tea towels. Yeah, haven't found a use for the fitted....other than re-selling on Craigslist.

    Laurainlincoln--Small world! Gators season opener is next Saturday. The only way I know that is because I was dumb enough to schedule my daughter's bday party that day and was just told by one of the RSVP'ing parents.

    Lisa_a--Yes! The mirror is still there and still not on sale. I have to say, it is amazingly lovely in real life and a bit different from the usual Pier 1 looking glasses that are kind of bazaar/painted wood (we have one of those, too, in our living room).

    BostonPam--Yes, my husband and I have washed there and me with my kids. Lots of elbow room. Pier 1 is great for mirrors....hope you find what you are looking for.

    Susie, Jakabedy, Rookie, Chris--Funny thing is, I think was expecting it to look...quirkier. Sometimes I lament that it is too run of the mill. Now whenever I read posts asking if hardware finishes have to match, etc., I end up talking to the computer screen. I was trying for an eclectic hardware experience but the choices tend to blend pretty seamlessly.

    Chicagoans--Ahh, the bathtub joke. Honestly, it never gets old. And it makes me want to order a soapstone bathtub.


    Sochi--Ahh, Goddess of the Modern Kitchen! Thank you for your kind words. I feel validated ;)

    Honor--You have fallen under my power of self promotion! I would like to think my cooking is good but I don't have much to compare it to. Want to have us over for dinner?

    Flwrs--The backsplash at the open shelves is Hakatai Classic Mint Ice which is a teal. The range backsplash is Meadow, which is a pretty green green. I like to think of it as the sky and the grass. My curtains being "the sunshine." The hood was installed 30" above the cooktop, as per the specs and when it first went in it seemed low to me (and I am barely 5'2"). It is 1200CFMs and sucks the SMOG right up and out. Actually, I do a lot of pan frying and deep frying and there is not a trace of oil on my backsplash!

    Bmore and Pillog--I cannot win with you two! Do you know how hard I worked to get *everything* put away? And now you insult me with *store bought* lemon bars? LOL. I'll have to make a batch and have you over. Instead of finished kitchen posts, we should have finished kitchen parties. At least have local Garden Web chapter meet-ups. I'll definitely bring the jam :)

  • formerlyflorantha
    13 years ago

    Nice work at making a personal space and also a working space. You've given the GW a great model of how to break the mould and still fulfill so many ideals of function, trend, utility. Go in peace and enjoy raising your family here, with love and ideals and style and food and your own happy drummer.

  • dee850
    13 years ago

    Unbelievable! I never would have believed that green mosaic tile would go with everything else in there, but it looks absolutely meant to be. Beautiful down to the last detail.

    I really appreciate the "how I organized the kitchen" info -- so helpful to see how all the real daily use stuff fits in.

  • amysrq
    13 years ago

    aaaah, the moment I've been waiting for! Now, I am going to go to the blog and have a delicious look. Just what I need at the end of a long week. TIA!

  • rookie_2010
    13 years ago

    In my opinion your eclectic hardware combination doesn't really "blend" because I noticed every single different type in the pictures but they "belong" in your kitchen. I hope that's better. I admired each different hardware style but not in a "one of these things is not like the other" kind of way. It was more like a candy store kind of a thing.
    Did I get that Sesame Street song stuck in your head? It's stuck in mine now.....
    Again, I LOVE your kitchen.

  • francoise47
    13 years ago

    Sabjimata, Thanks so much for sharing your beautiful, fun kitchen with all of us. It is pretty, functional, and funky all at the same time! I can't stop looking at your pictures. I love all the details.

  • sochi
    13 years ago

    Okay, I took some time to look more carefully. Love it more than before.

    I know that I don't cook enough to NEED your wonderful hard working kitchen, but I WANT it! Can I move in for just a while??

    The space and layout seems nothing short of brilliant, knowing how much you use the kitchen. The soapstone is gorgeous. The polished nickel bin pull may be my favourite, but I love the milk glass too. Love the Victorian high arch faucet and those wonderful anthropologie curtains.

    I'm so thrilled that you love it. Enjoy every messy moment in your dream kitchen! (and yes, please do share some pictures of the messy "cooking in progress" kitchen too!)

  • dianalo
    13 years ago

    I love how yours are not pix of a kitchen we have all seen before 100 times and make us yawn while we look for the special parts in it. Yours is all special.
    I can see why you "love" your crystal knobs...
    The lighting is also so retro cool.
    You have shown that you can be quirky and fun all while being totally functional.
    As another GWer who is aiming for retro-modern, my hat is off to you!

  • shelayne
    13 years ago


    Cat got my tongue? Oh yeah.

  • vampiressrn
    13 years ago

    Glad to see the final did a marvelous job. It is so out-of-the-box on design and materials...I LUV IT!!! That is a kitchen to have some fun in. :-)

  • beckysharp Reinstate SW Unconditionally
    13 years ago

    Sabjimata, you definitely put the fun in functional! How wonderful light and airy, and I love the marble. Wishing you many, many years of happy cooking there!


  • babushka_cat
    13 years ago


    love the mix of materials-the tile and marble combo
    love the open airy feeling!
    love all those sinks (how many do you have?!? :)
    that marble! whoopsie, let me take a moment to wipe up my drool

    the mirror,
    did i mention the tile and marble combo?
    the clocks, love those clocks...

    i can see it is a labor of love!

    i have an idea. you talk about how much you love your kitchen and it is always in use.
    now would love to see the pics of the kitchen in action -
    the leftover butter on the counter, the chocolate drips etc. maybe a future posting on your blog?

  • remodelfla
    13 years ago

    Simply WOW. I love the creativeness, functionality, and how you stayed true to the individual things you love. My alleged kitchen will be a mix of styles, tastes, finds, and pieces/things I'm drawn to. I hope it comes out half as beautiful and functional as yours!

  • bizzymom_of_2
    13 years ago

    Love the accents, and the layout is a dream! I can see it featured in a cooking show or magazine spread. I especially covet the mirror!

  • holligator
    13 years ago

    Please allow me to add to the chorus of WOW!!

    The coolest thing about your kitchen, in my opinion anyway, is that you basically have a whole lot of ordinary pieces put together in an absolutely extraordinary way. The whole is definitely far greater than the sum of its parts, although some of those parts are stunning in their own right. Still, who woulda thunk that such inexpensive elements could come together in such a breathtaking way? I can't say enough about your vision and style--the capacity to pull off something like you have is truly a remarkable gift!

    And, being a mere 20 minutes from you, I'll keep hoping for that finished kitchen party...and if I ever finish mine, you'll certainly be invited to celebrate with me! :)

  • kitchenaddict
    13 years ago

    Hi sabjimata...

    Unique, different, beautiful..My favorite elements are the mirror, the clocks and the sink and marble...Wow!


  • rjr220
    13 years ago

    Finally! Love all the choices -- eclectic that just somehow works together so marvelously. Beautiful and functional. I LOVE THE CLOCKS -- since the first time you let us see a couple pictures.

    Our old cloth diapers are now approaching 15 and 17 years old and have been used for many purposes, but tofu was never on the list!

    Thanks for letting us see the inside of the drawers -- you know what a snoop I am!

    Do you know yet? Boy or girl? Are you going to find out? Somehow I wouldn't be surprised to find out that you want to be surprised!

  • lakeaffect
    13 years ago

    It's hard to come up with a different superlative than previous posters have used, perhaps what my 12 yo said will work tho...she proclaimed it "totally rockin'", and I have to agree. Let's see, the soapstone sink (hell, both sinks), the counters, the blue and green tile, the clocks, the everything. Fun, functional and funky, what more could one want?

    Great and truly inspiring job.


  • plllog
    13 years ago

    Yeah, we know how hard you worked to get it magazine photo ready! That's why we were teasing you!!! We're acknowledging your hard work and DH wrangling and kid suppression, and abandonment of your cooking/baking exuberance long enough to take these totally cleared away, sparkling full of sunlight, gorgeous pictures of your gorgeous kitchen.

    I think we're both, also, kind of wistful for the lovely comestible products of your industry. Next time you take pictures, do include a pie!

    Titchadshi. May you be renewed. :)

  • bmorepanic
    13 years ago

    We're teasing?

    Creative, beautiful kitchen. It's a great use/redesign of your space and it must be a wonder to work in. Your food writing has actually caused my mouth to water. Someday I will work up the nerve to try something.

    There! Enough for pie, pleeeeaaase?

  • ajard
    13 years ago

    Amazing Kitchen/.... I had contemplated on mixing a soapstone sink with my marble counters... but couldnt find a photo of it or anyone that had done that.. I love it.. I should have tried it!

  • littlesmokie
    13 years ago

    I love it! I remember some of your previous posts-sharing about your amazing soapstone sink (LOVE), your eclectic hardware (LOVE) and am so excited to see your finished kitchen.

    I'm marveling at how you used quite a few classic things but somehow managed to personalize them and make your kitchen such a stand out. It is so fun to see an interesting kitchen with so many special touches given how you shared you were careful to stick to a budget.

    Congratulations and thank you for sharing so many helpful details of your journey. :)

  • niffy
    13 years ago

    sabjimata, your kitchen is awesome, beautiful, FUN, and completely memorable all at the same time. i totally love it. every last bit!

  • honeychurch
    13 years ago

    Love it, especially sink and faucets. Also your color choices, so cool!

  • jumab
    13 years ago

    What a beautiful kitchen!!! Love all your different materials and how well everything comes together!!

  • karen_belle
    13 years ago

    If it wasn't too rude to just leave a posting blank, I would do it because I am completely speechless!

    Love your reorg of the space, love your dividing wall on the island, love your looooooong clean-up sink, love your color choices. Love.

  • sabjimata
    Original Author
    13 years ago

    Big thank you's for all the kindness and love thrown at my kitchen. I really appreciate that GW Forum members can appreciate my thrift since most people I know don't equate dropping 65-70 grand on a kitchen "thrifty!" But you guys, well, you understand!

    I want to give a special shout out to my half inch overlay cabinets. What a total non-GW Forum choice, no? Saved a few thousand going this route and to be honest, I don't think it really detracts from the kitchen at all. I was worried about the raised panel door looking so early 90's dorky, but in the end, I think it is a non-issue.

    I've read everyone's comments with rapt attention...please forgive me for not personally responding. It's the weekend, kids are home, free time limited.

    BUT--just so you know that I do take requests, here is a pic from last Saturday night of me in the kitch making pizza for 7 adults and six kids. Yum yum!

  • plllog
    13 years ago

    Everyone take a lesson! The "dorky" cabinets are a non-issue--it's all about context!!

    Thanks for the "pie"!

  • gsciencechick
    13 years ago

    Just gorgeous! The stove and the sink are amazing!

  • sabjimata
    Original Author
    13 years ago

    Pillog, I was thinking of starting a separate thread as an homage to the half inch overlay cabs. I know there was a kitchen on here (maybe 6 mo. back) that was a beautiful remodel--a paint job--and the cabs were raised panel partial overlay.

    I don't think the trend will ever catch on the way 80's fashion has, but still...a girl can try :)

  • segbrown
    13 years ago

    I will just echo all the superlatives and so on ... and that it just looks like a kitchen that would make me happy every time I was in it.

    Also, and I apologize if I missed it somewhere, but what was the inspiration for the range wall in/on the island? It just makes so much sense on so many levels, but I don't think I've seen anything quite like it before. Was it just a creative solution to the issue of getting a functional island hood? Was a wall already there? It's just so perfect, everyone should have one, lol

  • sabjimata
    Original Author
    13 years ago

    Seg--The engineer's plans required a structural post there. I really am not a fan of the structural post so I just figured out a way to mask it/make it fun and functional. Plus, I think it is kind of grounding. And yeah, it allowed me to double up on the stove and sink layout.

  • clafouti
    13 years ago

    Wow! Your vision really came through!

  • marthavila
    13 years ago

    Wow. Just wow. Apparently I was on vacation when you first posted your reveal. But, boy, oh boy -- just getting a complete look at your kitchen for the first time, I'm feeling like I just went to the moon! What a great kitchen! Especially feeling your willingness to think out of the box in all your approaches. As a result, your design is simultaneously beautiful and luxurious but also down-to-earth and penny-wise. You must be on cloud nine. Congratulations!

  • sjerin
    13 years ago

    Your kitchen is so different and very beautiful--love your taste. I have an odd question: When you are cooking with mustard seeds and otherwise frying/sauteeing at higher heat, does the wall contain most of the airborne oil particles that the hood doesn't catch?

  • sabjimata
    Original Author
    13 years ago

    Cl, Mv & Sj--Thanks for visiting my finished kitch! I am still loving it and, at the risk of sounding ridiculously self absorbed and corny, often sit in the morning, drinking my cocoa, admiring how great a jog I did! The functionality is very pleasing and the scrimps don't take away from the splurges in my eye. Definitely this kitchen suits my cooking needs, upgrades our living space tremendously but does feel down to earth and not real fancy pants.

    Just in time! New baby will be coming in about three months and I would be the meanest mommy ever if I had that old grimy kitchen. Would probably never put my kid down on the floor in the old kitch or DR because it was so terrible and chronically dirty.

    Sjerin--Re: the wall. The wall was worked into the design because we had to have it there (or two posts) for structural issues. It is holding up much of the roof. Amazingly, the hood sucks up all the grease--and we do a lot of deep frying and pan frying. I have wiped down the wall as part of rudimentary cleaning, however, it is amazingly clean/grease free! I am well impressed with the hood :)