Picking up the kitchen...

When I started writing this post I wanted to pick up the post on laying the floor in the kitchen which was about two years ago, or so I thought.  Uhm, no, not two years ago but six years ago!  Six years already!  Time just whizzes past.  

Anyway, six years ago when I bought the flagstones at the KDF in London, I only bought enough flagstones to cover the visible areas of the kitchen floor.   This past winter I decided I wanted to tile the entire ground floor with the same flagstones so I ordered several boxes of marl flagstones from Stacey's Miniature Masonry online. 

As I now had ordered enough flagstones I chose to patch the areas of the kitchen floor which I had not put any tiles six years ago: underneath the AGA and along both side walls where the cupboards were.  

The patchwork was easy to do and I soon moved on to the room next to the kitchen in the basement.  This room is at the front of the house and will probably be part pantry, part study.

The marl stone is real stone but very easy to cut and sand.  The flagstones don't have to be sanded after laying them, but I like to have a smooth surface on them so I do sand.  It does create the most enormous mess so it is best to do this outside.  

For me it was easy to work outside as I glued the marl stone onto a mat board template of my floor.  The mat board is strong and fairly rigid yet light and easy to cut.  

When it was finished it was simply a matter of dropping the floor into place.  Perfect!  
In the photo above I was trying out where the pantry should go and I put a small mock up in the kitchen.  It's not going there.  It will probably be much bigger and on the other (right) side of the wall.

I thought I'd show you this photo of the kitchen floor weighted down with my lovely old irons.  Aren't they great?  You can pick them up cheaply, are quite heavy, perfectly flat underneath and even come with handles.  The perfect weights.  

After six years of deliberation ;-) I decided to change the layout of the kitchen walls a bit.  I removed the small side walls, basically making the kitchen a big rectangle.  That meant even more restoration work on the floor.  

Most of the flagstone patchwork will disappear underneath the kitchen cabinets, but not this tiny bit of restoration.  I considered taking out the flagstones in that section and replacing them with new ones, but I must admit I rather like the patchwork effect, adding a sense of history to the house.

Removing the side walls also means the water pump will be exposed on that side.  I will probably tile the side of the pump house, I'm not sure how I will fix that yet.  The pump also needs a new handle as this one is too big.  

On that side I'm also adding a modern appliance in the form of... a dishwasher!   I have started soldering the racks for the dishwasher.  Not so easy for me as I'm not good at soldering.  Since I took these photos I have re-soldered most of the joints on the rack, making it a bit less clumsy.

Building the dishwasher will take some time and figuring out.  In the mean time I continued with hinging the kitchen door.  Now you may remember I am building this house as a series of roomboxes which can be stacked together to form one big house, eventually.  

In principle this means it is much easier to work with than an entire house.  Unless of course you have already built, decorated and furnished several of the upper floors.  And they are stacked on top of the room you want to work on.  Then there's a problem.  

But after some acrobatics and balancing acts worthy of a circus I managed to uncover the kitchen roombox without incident.  I don't think I could have hinged the kitchen door any other way than by laying the roombox on its side on my work bench.  

The door is finally hinged!  And it only took 6 years ;-)  I added door knobs and a lock and made little face plates and bolts.  Non working, but I think they look convincing.

Yes I have noticed I need to clean it up some more and retouch the paint.  I mixed my own paint colour for the kitchen cabinets and door and I must say I found it a bit of a miracle that a. I was able to find the paint pot again, and b. the paint was still useable.  

This corner of the kitchen is finished.  Now I have to make a cooker hood (or a chimney is more appropriate), shelves, a fridge, a ceiling, lights... Plenty to do before I can put all the other roomboxes back on top of this one.  


  1. Hi Josje! I am thrilled to see the progress you are making with your kitchen after those (few) years of mulling over your options! I do find the years are screaming by... and the projects are not getting any closer to the finished stage in my house either. I love to see the use of the real stone on your floor... I always worry about the weight of the finished house if real materials like slate are used. Is this not as big an issue because all your rooms are separate? I should consider that method! As usual, your work looks beautifully precise and absolutely realistic! No-one would know those tiles are not RL sized, and the door hardware is gorgeous! I can't wait to see more! :)

  2. Hello Josje, Time does fly by. 6 years! Nevertheless it must be great to continue with this project. The enlarged floor looks great and personally I like the visible piece of restauration near the pump very much. It makes it that much more realistic. The face plates and bolts for the door are a nice touch of realism too! I look forward to the next post about this kitchen.


  3. What a charming kitchen. I love the choice of materials and your meticulous craftsmanship.

  4. I love your kitchen keep up doing this great work

  5. Great work, the flagstones are perfect and I like door very much.

  6. The flagstones look wonderful! I really like the effect of them with the cabinets.

  7. What a lovely workspace this kitchen will become...such soft and soothing colours in the flagstones which blend so beautifully with the cabinets. The workmanship on the kitchen door hinges, lock, face plates, bolts and door knobs adds such realism to the entire room. Cheers, Alayne

  8. 'all good things take time' as the saying goes. The kitchen floor is wonderful and I really like the little patch-up pieces visible next to the water pump. Old houses always have a story to tell and it just looks like someone, at some point, for some reason changed the layout of the house. Perfect!
    I am curious to the room-box building. My (first ever) wee house, is just that - three rooms stacked on top of one another, but I didn't think to give each its own ceiling. Next time...
    Anna x

  9. Me encantan las losas del suelo. La puerta está muy conseguida.

  10. It's so much fun to see you working on and posting about this amazing project again! Sometimes when we set a project aside, the smallest thing can help lead us to our passion for it again! Have fun and please do share more! Your work so inspiring!

  11. Cuanto has trabajado! el suelo queda maravilloso y todos los detalles que has ido añadiendo,le dan vida a esa cocina,quedará espectacular!

  12. Only six years! Now I am wondering about the stone the flagstones are made of, it sure reminds me of the Kenyan stone I have that I have started to use for table tops. Your circus stunts made me smile, I decided I don't want to worry about making all the exterior details on my Victorian dollhouse and matching the inside decor of the dollhouse doors to the existing room...in my case most of my paint mixes are dry and had to be tossed, it is 20 years since I started building the house! So a month or two ago I got busy and cut my parlour and dining room free from the house to make into individual roomboxes to go into a magnificent Victorian bookcase. I love all the changes you made and congratulations on managing to hinge your door.

  13. The flagstones especially the patchwork ones, look Wonderful! and I LOVE the Wide Dutch Door with all of the marvellous hardware on it, too! The idea of your constructing a custom-made modern dishwasher including a rack, is so like you! I only wish I had half your talents Josje, as your work is ALWAYS a Joy to Behold!

  14. Welcome back! I can't believe I missed this first time round and what a thoroughly enjoyable read it was. I really like the burgundy interiors to your cabinets and the attention to detail on your kitchen door. Lucky or what to have the paint still usable. I'm looking forward to following your progress with this.