Wednesday, June 16, 2010

My Dad, The Hero.

When we moved into this house, one of the first questions my husband and I had was - where are we going to put the microwave??

Normally I'd say "above the stove of course", but the way our cabinets are mounted, there was absolutely no room for a standard microwave. It'd come down way too low. But that didn't stop me - I searched the internet and (it seems like) every store in town to find a low profile (small) over the range microwave. I finally found one, but it wasn't wide enough, didn't have a light and didn't have a vent. My family said - we can build some moulding to go on either side of the microwave.. but I just wasn't convinced it would work.

After going over every possible scenario, I finally (with a very pouty face) said fine - we can keep it on the counter. After all, this is our first home and it's not going to be perfect. So about this time, my parents came into town and on the way home I took them to stop at some hardware stores to pick up some things, one of which was a microwave. My parents very sweetly bought me the microwave as a house warming present - a small, pretty one that I would be somewhat ok with being on the counter.

But when we got home, my dad said to me - "Why don't we put this microwave in the pantry? We can cut a hole in the side and use the electrical plug from the fridge". Hallelujah! Why didn't I think of this???? Sure, I thought of putting it in the pantry, but had no idea how to get electricity in there. My dad is an engineer, and he was totally my hero that day. It took him a matter of 10 minutes and the microwave was tucked nicely, out of sight, in the pantry.

Sorry this turned into a long drawn out story, but I thought it was a nice one to share with Father's Day coming up. Dad - you're my hero!!! And every time I use the microwave, I smile and think of my Dad.

Our current kitchen - note the very low range vent (which will eventually be swapped out with a stainless steel vent)





Awesome microwave placement:





Some notes:

- We do not have electrical outlet covers yet, it's on my to do list.

- I realize the fridge is way too big for the space. Yes, it bothers me. But it came with the house, it's a very nice fridge, and it would be frivolous to replace it. Money can be spent better elsewhere... like on furniture! Anyone out there that has a stainless too-small fridge and needs a bigger fridge and wants to do a swap?

- Kitchenaides are allowed to be left out because they are pretty :)

- I still don't know what to do with the trash can situation.... I don't like those out either.

- Like my makeshift desk? aka the kitchen table.

- Paint color is Valspar Seine

56 comments:

  1. Love that sneaky way to hide an applicance and give you more room. Kudos to your dad.

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  2. I keep our garbage can in the cabinet under the sink. It's a narrow one that fits on one side of the pipes.

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  3. For the trash can why dont you buy one of those slide in/out trash contraptions they sell at Lowes and just add it to one of your existing lower cabinets? They sell them by the kitchen cabinets. I agree, the microwave looks a ton better hidden and out of view. Good job dad!

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  4. What a genius idea! I never would have thought of it. We are looking for a house now and the microwave on the counter is such a turn off. Now there's a solution. :)

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  5. how ingenious of your dad to hide the microwave in the pantry!? i have the same problem you do, but i don't have a pantry next to my fridge . . . :(

    i have a counter-depth fridge, and while it might look a better than one that hangs out, it;s really small inside, especially the freezer. i do't know if it was really worth the extra expense a few years ago.

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  6. thats a great place for it :)
    I REFUSED to put the microwave above the stove, so I am putting ours in the butler's pantry (its really a utility room) off the kitchen :)

    <3 Cara

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  7. We purchased a 1930's brick cottage in a historic district. It only had one owner previously (she died at 104 years old!) and they renovated the kitchen before trying to sell it. Lucky for us the man doing the renovation lives in a nice house himself so he took the time to have the cabinet maker build an extra large cabinet with an outlet inside to "hide" the microwave since they didn't have those types of appliances back in the day. The cabinet has two shelves and is very spacious so we have our toaster oven on one shelf and the microwave on the other.

    Anyway, to the point of my comment. We have a lot more clearance around ours but I do know it can get really warm when I microwave something for an extended period of time (like a baked potato) so be careful that you keep an eye on the temp of the cabinet while you're using your fancy new microwave!!! The kitchen looks great and I love that paint color!

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  8. Aren't dads so great! We had a similar situation to yours and my husband's dad fixed ours! Also, you are so right about the kitchenaide. My sits happily on my counter!

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  9. Great solution for the microwave. As for the trash can, we use a small trash bin that goes in the cabinet under our sink--one side is the trash can, the other side is recyclables. Two bonuses with this set up is 1) the trash is out of sight and 2) since the bin is small, the trash gets taken out more often and therefor doesn't get smelly.

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  10. I love it!!! Dad's are the best!! Your kitchen looks amazing!!! I love the color and I can't wait to see what else you have done to your casa.

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  11. I know a lot of people who remove their cabinet above to stove to mount their microwave there. They then just put a small shelf with some glassware above it to fill in the gap... Otherwise I think your Dad's idea was wonderful!!!

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  12. Great job Dad! I couldn't bear having the microwave on the counter of our small kitchen either. I put it in the laundry closet that's in the kitchen. It sits happily over the washer and dryer (which is irritating to have in the kitchen but will have to do for a few years before we can do a BIG renovation) and is accessible when we need it but I don't have to look at it! I love that your new microwave fit perfectly into your pantry cabinet. Also, I agree with other commenters about the under the sink garbage can. It's the way to go. If you recycle you won't produce even trash to fill up a big can before it gets smelly too.

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  13. I had the same anxiety when I moved into my new apartment and found a way to fit mine in a cabinet (don't have a pantry- all part of the dream). Will never go back to a microwave on the counter again!

    (o:

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  14. We had the same problem and did the same thing! My hubby was able to reroute the electrical outlet to the inside of the pantry so we don't eve see the plug! We have the same exact set up in the pantry and I took out several of the shelves and put the trash can in there. Now all the uglies are hidden!

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  15. love that idea! What a perfect way to hid the microwave!

    Oh you said you want to replace the hood over their oven... I have seen someone spray paint it with stainless steel paint. I wish I could remember the site where I found it but it is a quick fix to making it look stainless like the rest and if it doesn't turn out exactly like you had hoped then you are replacing it anyways!!!

    so it is sort of a win-win situation!

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  16. Don't sweat the fridge! Mine is a monster and it is hands down my favorite thing about my kitchen, ever. It was my one massive splurge and cost as much as my sofa. As for trash cans, get a little roll out one if you don't cook much... otherwise we all suffer through them.

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  17. Your dad is a smarty. We got rid of our microwave, as we got an amazing convection oven as a wedding present. It was not an easy victory but I couldn't have two big things taking up valuable space in our 1950's galley kitchen.

    Our fridge is too large as well and we freakin’ bought it. We had to purchase it before we closed, as the money came from the seller. So, in my defense, we had only two days between my travel schedules.

    I noticed, on the bottom shelf of your pantry, that you have a “skillet.” Do you use it? If so, how? The Mister’s mother gave us one two years ago and I haven’t had a need to brown 6 pounds of meat and can think of no other use. Currently, I’m prepared to take it to Goodwill.

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  18. Dad's are the best. Great idea. As to the trash, the genius previous owner of my house turned one of the lower cabinets into a pull out drawer that neatly fits two kitchen-size trash cans. One for trash, one for recycling. I think any handyman could do it. When is your dad visiting again?

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  19. Ditto the slide out trash can. I bought mine at Bed Bath and beyond...I thought it was expensive at the time, but I'm so glad I got it. One of my best investments in the kitchen!

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  20. Brilliant!! I never would have thought of that. Your dad deserves an extra special father's day award this weekend!

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  21. Oh how sweet and what a greta idea, a hero indeed! Love the kitchen Bryn! Looking very very nice!!!

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  22. My microwave is in my cupboard as well! My husband and I rent, and when we moved in I sadly saw that we would have to put the microwave on the counter. I balked at this and was ready to go microwave-less, but then our landlord showed us the cupboard they cut a hole in the back of, just for this purpose. Some people are so smart! It has worked perfectly for us, and I love having clean, open counter space.
    Your kitchen is lovely, btw. I am a new reader and just wanted to say hello, and I love your blog!

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  23. Dads are the best!! I was just going to suggest turning one of your bottom cabinets into a sliding trash can, but I see other beat me to it. Good luck with everything, it's looking great so far!

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  24. Genius idea for the microwave!!! As for the trash, if you have an extra cabinet, you could install a pull out shelf and place a trash can there. When I redid my kitchen, we installed a pull out cabinet with the trash built-in (to replace the trash compactor hole, aaaaahhhh). It's one of my favorite things in the kitchen!

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  25. What a great idea! Our microwave is currently sitting on the counter (yuck!) but we have tons of room in the pantry to hide it. I'm just not sure if my husband is handy enough to figure out the wiring part:) Thanks for sharing!

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  26. I love when dads come to the rescue! I like the paint color, looks good

    We plan on tucking our mircowave inside a cabinet too next to the fridge :) We don't have enough room for the microwave above the stove. We need all the counter space we can get.

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  27. We had a similar situarion. We ended up moving the cabint above the stove up higher and were able to put in a microwave above the stove. We then trimmed everything out nicely with some crown molding. It did bother me though that it was the only cabinet that was higher than the rest, so I raised the valance on our window up to the height of the raised cabinet. Perfect solution! It made things a little more balance and let more light through the window.

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  28. You are so superficial. I can't believe you are complaining about your fridge...I understand the microwave but your fridge? Come on...seems like every other post you talk about how this and that doesn't look right. It makes you seem stuck up.

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  29. Lindsay - I can see what your saying. I'd consider myself more a perfectionist; little things like the fridge sticking out does bother me. Since I decorate people's homes for a living, it's expected that I see and point out little details like that. I'd say design is 75% scale. I'm sorry it comes off as being stuck up.

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  30. What a great idea!! Who likes to look at a microwave anyway?!

    I really like your pendants - wherever did you get them?

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  31. Bryn, Love you blog! Great idea with the microwave, and spray painting the hood stainless until you are ready for an upgrade sounds like a great idea. As for the trash can, I think it's ok to have it out as long as it is pretty. My husband and I La-la-LOVE our stainless trashcan. I'm not a fan of the "in cabinet" ones because when I cook I often have both hands dirty and don't want to be opening cabinets with sticky hands. We bought this one "http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/product.asp?SKU=15736224" and love the step to open pedal and soft close lid. And on a side note: If Lindsey thinks you are a snob tell her I said she doesn't have to read your blog, because EVERYONE else here loves it!

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  32. we don't have a microwave! ours broke and my husband + i decided to just live without one. after the first month, i completely forgot i've ever used one. isn't that bizarre?

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  33. I totally love this and I wish ours was not above the stove so we could have a vent instead. I really want to have somehting like this in the next house. Brilliant idea.

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  34. I have a stainless fridge that is petite!!!! And would be totally willing to swap. And I live within driving distance...

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  35. Great Idea for the microwave! I like that much better than over the stove. I will have to think of this for a future kitchen.
    Like others have said, I suggest a pull out contraption for a lower cabinet trash can. Though it really doesn't look that bad since you have a nice stainless one.

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  36. i don't mind my microwave on the counter. i use it way too much to have it hidden away. however, if that is something that bothers you, your dad found a great way to solve the problem.
    i also keep my trash under the kitchen sink. some of my relatives have the pull out thing which i love. i think ikea has them too.

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  37. Bryn, I love the microwave placement. Genius. The paint color is really pretty too and makes the cabinets pop but still acts as a neutral. See if you can try to put up a few little shelves on the end of your upper cabinet run. It would be a great place for a few cook books. :)

    Blair

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  38. Bryn,
    Love the updates, you guys are making great progress! Just be careful when using the microwave that it doesn't overheat...I think by code they make you leave a few inches for air circulation, just FYI.
    As for the switchplates, check out www.switchplatesuperstore.com. We love our trash can from The Container Store, it's actually pretty thin and fits at the end of our counter. It's made by SimpleHuman and it's called the Deluxe Butterfly Step-On. Good luck!! *Amy

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  39. I hate having the trash can out too. Could you buy something like this http://www.containerstore.com/shop?productId=10014432&N=&Ntt=trash+can+slider
    ? There are few other places that sell them in different sizes, if you can sacrafice a cabinet.

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  40. I currently live in the land of the tiny kitchen (Holland), so we don't have a microwave... and now that I've gone two years without one, I don't plan on having one once we're back in the States.

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  41. We have this same kind of setup next to our refrigerator and I never even thought of putting our microwave there - ours is on the counter and I cannot stand it! We actually have our garbage can in that little pantry cabinet currently. But I bet we could do a shelf in there and do the same thing - fabulous idea - props to your father! Any possibility it could get too hot in there?

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  42. i don't mind my microwave on the counter. i use it way too much to have it hidden away. however, if that is something that bothers you, your dad found a great way to solve the problem.
    i also keep my trash under the kitchen sink. some of my relatives have the pull out thing which i love. i think ikea has them too.

    ReplyDelete
  43. I have a stainless fridge that is petite!!!! And would be totally willing to swap. And I live within driving distance...

    ReplyDelete
  44. Bryn, Love you blog! Great idea with the microwave, and spray painting the hood stainless until you are ready for an upgrade sounds like a great idea. As for the trash can, I think it's ok to have it out as long as it is pretty. My husband and I La-la-LOVE our stainless trashcan. I'm not a fan of the "in cabinet" ones because when I cook I often have both hands dirty and don't want to be opening cabinets with sticky hands. We bought this one "http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/product.asp?SKU=15736224" and love the step to open pedal and soft close lid. And on a side note: If Lindsey thinks you are a snob tell her I said she doesn't have to read your blog, because EVERYONE else here loves it!

    ReplyDelete
  45. What a great idea!! Who likes to look at a microwave anyway?!

    I really like your pendants - wherever did you get them?

    ReplyDelete
  46. You are so superficial. I can't believe you are complaining about your fridge...I understand the microwave but your fridge? Come on...seems like every other post you talk about how this and that doesn't look right. It makes you seem stuck up.

    ReplyDelete
  47. My microwave is in my cupboard as well! My husband and I rent, and when we moved in I sadly saw that we would have to put the microwave on the counter. I balked at this and was ready to go microwave-less, but then our landlord showed us the cupboard they cut a hole in the back of, just for this purpose. Some people are so smart! It has worked perfectly for us, and I love having clean, open counter space.
    Your kitchen is lovely, btw. I am a new reader and just wanted to say hello, and I love your blog!

    ReplyDelete
  48. Ditto the slide out trash can. I bought mine at Bed Bath and beyond...I thought it was expensive at the time, but I'm so glad I got it. One of my best investments in the kitchen!

    ReplyDelete
  49. Your dad is a smarty. We got rid of our microwave, as we got an amazing convection oven as a wedding present. It was not an easy victory but I couldn't have two big things taking up valuable space in our 1950's galley kitchen.

    Our fridge is too large as well and we freakin’ bought it. We had to purchase it before we closed, as the money came from the seller. So, in my defense, we had only two days between my travel schedules.

    I noticed, on the bottom shelf of your pantry, that you have a “skillet.” Do you use it? If so, how? The Mister’s mother gave us one two years ago and I haven’t had a need to brown 6 pounds of meat and can think of no other use. Currently, I’m prepared to take it to Goodwill.

    ReplyDelete
  50. Don't sweat the fridge! Mine is a monster and it is hands down my favorite thing about my kitchen, ever. It was my one massive splurge and cost as much as my sofa. As for trash cans, get a little roll out one if you don't cook much... otherwise we all suffer through them.

    ReplyDelete
  51. I know a lot of people who remove their cabinet above to stove to mount their microwave there. They then just put a small shelf with some glassware above it to fill in the gap... Otherwise I think your Dad's idea was wonderful!!!

    ReplyDelete
  52. We purchased a 1930's brick cottage in a historic district. It only had one owner previously (she died at 104 years old!) and they renovated the kitchen before trying to sell it. Lucky for us the man doing the renovation lives in a nice house himself so he took the time to have the cabinet maker build an extra large cabinet with an outlet inside to "hide" the microwave since they didn't have those types of appliances back in the day. The cabinet has two shelves and is very spacious so we have our toaster oven on one shelf and the microwave on the other.

    Anyway, to the point of my comment. We have a lot more clearance around ours but I do know it can get really warm when I microwave something for an extended period of time (like a baked potato) so be careful that you keep an eye on the temp of the cabinet while you're using your fancy new microwave!!! The kitchen looks great and I love that paint color!

    ReplyDelete
  53. Love that sneaky way to hide an applicance and give you more room. Kudos to your dad.

    ReplyDelete

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