Nothing is easy, part MCMXII — new track lighting

The mini remodel of the Henbogle kitchen is off to a rocky start.  We decided to upgrade the lighting in the kitchen a bit as the existing overhead lighting always left me working at the counter with the light behind me.  While I’m not crazy about track lighting in an old Cape, I want to see my finger when I cut it off, so we picked out a fixture that seemed the least modern/obtrusive.

Dan got to work removing the existing fixture, not too difficult.  Naturally, the ceiling under the fixture is cracking and in need of paint, but I am not surprised.  This is an old house after all.  But then he notices that the junction box to which the light is wired is loose, and crooked, hanging awkwardly and protruding on one

side beyond the drywall ceiling.  The old fixture hid this, but the track lighting is designed to be flush with the ceiling.  Arghh.

Well, the light is in for now, but gaping unattractively.  We will need to replace the junction box with a shallower box, or do some other retrofit which will no doubt require drywall repair.  UGH.  I hate drywall (which explains why the laundry room has a beadboard ceiling.)  Still, the light really brightens up the workspace.  Maybe I can hang on to all my fingers!  I wish we could have found something more in keeping with the house, but this will have to do for now.  And the track lighting is going to look GREAT with the new laminate we chose:  Formica Basalt Slate.

Installing it ourselves means we get to buy a new tool, yay!  A trim router!  We picked out a Porter-Cable model similar to one my heroes Tommy Silva and Norm Abram use.

So, dramatic new lighting, new countertops, and the big reveal, a Blanco Silgranite sink, sized perfectly to fit into the existing sink cutout.  Now, I just need to find a good quality, all metal pull-down faucet that isn’t supersized and is less than 8 million dollars, which is harder then you might expect.  But I will.

 

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16 Responses to “Nothing is easy, part MCMXII — new track lighting”

  1. Gail Fines Says:

    I think the kitchen will be lovely when you finish, can hardly wait to see the photos! I am planning a kitchen re-do myself, unfortunately it will be a major re-do so I am having can lights added in critical areas. Like you I have no desire to cut off a finger!

    • Ali Says:

      If/when we re-do theceiling, I’ll have can lights. we installed them in the laundry room and I love them!

  2. kate@livingthefrugallife Says:

    With my eye for detail pertinent only to me, I count 5 – FIVE! – teapots on your open shelves, at least. You’re my kinda tea drinker.

  3. Sara Says:

    Good lighting trumps style in a kitchen, it’s just so important. But it looks totally fine to me :)

    Hooray for new tools, I love that about projects. And then you wonder how you lived without them.

    • Ali Says:

      I still marvel over all the work we did before we bought a compound miter saw — and why we made everything so difficult by putting it off!

      • Sara Says:

        We still don’t have one of those! But, we have a router and table saw, those have been the “how did we manage before?” tools

  4. Mustard Says:

    We remodeled our kitchen last year by ourselves. With full time jobs and a toddler, it took us a long time, but we saved a ton of money and we got bragging rights. And love the sink.

  5. Robin Says:

    I know what you mean about drywall repair…it’s awful! No matter what you do, there is still dust dust dust! When we did our mini kitchen make over before the wedding, some of the plaster walls really needed to have drywall layed over them. I refused and used a paintable paper product which is glued to the walls then painted. It has a texture to it and looks good. That would not work on your ceiling though.

    I understand your feeling about the track lighting. We also have some here over the island. It really bothered me since it was not architecturally correct to the period of the house. What we did was hung a much needed pot rack and then put drop pendant lights through the pot rack. Now I don’t notice the track lighting. I think it is one of those things that over time you will not notice it.

    That’s a really nice sink. Is it an undermount?

    I would recommend a good Delta faucet. They are not as pricey as many of the faucets out there and I have been more then pleased with ours.

    Keep us posted as your work progresses!

    • Ali Says:

      DIY drywall work before a wedding sounds challenging! The paper layer sounds like a good option.

      I hope in time the track light will become less noticeable. Or that I find a different style that works better for this situation.

      The sink is either drop-in or undermount. In this application it will be a drop in. While I’d love an undermount, it would require dismantling the cabinet to put one in, and that is not on the short list of fun projects!

      I have my eye on a Delta Linden faucet. I hope to get a chance to check some out this weekend.

  6. Laurie Meunier Graves Says:

    The kitchen looks great! Anyway, why can’t things be mixed up? I believe the style is called “eclectic,” my favorite style, which fits perfectly with a modest budget ;)

    An off-topic question: Does Henbogle rhyme with Glenbogle? Just finished watching the series “Monarch of the Glen”—I loved it!—and it occurred to me that the names might be connected.

    • Ali Says:

      Ding! You are correct, Laurie. Way back in March 2006 when I started Henbogle blog, we were planning a chicken coop as we were watching Monarch of the Glen on Netflix.

      When we realized our chicken coop plan was assuming palatial details, we decided to name it Henbogle, like Glenbogle. With chickens.

  7. grafixmuse Says:

    None of our home projects run as smoothly as we expect they will. I love the slate laminate counter tops and the sink is a dream. Some day we will tackle our kitchen. I can’t wait to see the final pictures.

  8. George Myers Jr. Says:

    Hey! Cool blog! Great-looking kitchen! Thanks for the meet ‘n’ talk today!

  9. Robin Says:

    How nice to have good lighting. In our old house our kitchen had two canister lights that pointed straight down. It was such horrid lighting that we got track lighting and it was amazing how big of difference it made. New kitchen reno’s all always exciting!

  10. jeannie Says:

    Ali, You & Dan can do anything!An I know you will figure it all out and find what your looking for. I have faith in you!

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