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September 27, 2016

Revamp Champs Entry #16: Cabinets & Counters Galore– Ann Helfrich, South Portland, ME

As part of our kitchen remodel we created countertops from plywood (and a little slate) all on our own!

After removing the walls  we were left with the sink side of the kitchen, which had a laminate countertop and fiberglass sink (kind of hard to see in the pics). The other side of the kitchen had no countertops and only a set of four “upper” cabinets. We built a base for those “uppers” and bought another lower cabinet to make an L shape. We then used three sheets of plywood to fabricate countertops for all of the cabinets and a “bar” that stretches above the stairwell and spans the space between the kitchen and the dining and living rooms. It looks like we used a double layer of plywood but copying our laminate countertop I just made a lip around the edge, saving materials and ensuring that the counters were the same overall height as our original counters. We then used a type of epoxy that is used for bars and table tops to finish the counters – we used epoxy because we figured that polyurethane would not be strong enough to protect the edges of the plywood over time.

Things to note would be the use of the edge of the plywood as decoration at the seams and on the edges of the counters. Also one part of the kitchen has plywood backsplash. Lastly we ran against a problem when code enforcement told me no new construction could include a combustable within 2 inches of the working chimney. Luckily the previous owner was a mason and had left a slab of slate in the back yard. I used a circular saw with a masonry blade to cut it into strips and it is the blackish strip you see along the chimney. We also painted the cabinets and installed fun reclaimed hardware.

Supplies (not counting tools, saw blades etc.) for the countertops were just $300!

We also installed a new sink and faucet – with expert advice from Dave in plumbing at Maine Hardware 🙂      

Revamp Champs Entry #16: Cabinets & Counters Galore– Ann Helfrich, South Portland, ME [BEFORE]

Revamp Champs Entry #16: Cabinets & Counters Galore– Ann Helfrich, South Portland, ME [BEFORE]

Before

Before

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knocking down walls…

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down to studs

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temporary counters after walls are down

subcounter installation

subcounter installation

fabrication of sink counter

fabrication of sink counter

7am second coat of seal to achieve smoother finish

7am second coat of seal to achieve smoother finish

Chimney side- AFTER

Livingroom side- AFTER

after_img_5230

Kitchen side view

corner detail of sink counter

corner detail of sink counter

Posted by:

Ann Helfrich, Homeowner in South Portland

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  • Gair Smith Helfrich

    Love the change in this home. Opening up the kitchen wall made everything feel more spacious!

  • Christine Altman

    This. Is. Brilliant.
    Love the exposed brick on BOTH sides. Dazzled by the countertop. Double the workspace, ditto the view.
    Kudos!

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