Welcome to Sue's Diner

For the last few years my wife has been asking me to construct a "booth" like you might find in a diner or restaurant. As I thought about what might be a good gift for our 20th anniversary I decided I would build it. Like most home improvement projects this one "little thing" mushroomed into a complete remodel.

The previous owner had the dining area dressed up with cove molding, a chair rail and removed the wall texturing half way down to apply wallpaper. We painted and papered a few years ago and added a 12" diameter white glass ball light fixture over the table.
The dining area before the booth

The new dining area
The finished corner booth matches the proportions of the octagonal table and has ample storage underneath. Sue made the cushions and re-upholstered the step stool and 4 chairs. The oak table got stripped and refinished.

Surrounded by fresh wallpaper, the finished area provides seating for more people. The size, shape and proportions of the booth allows us to use the leaf in the table for more serving room. A new ceiling fixture focuses 2 soft pools of light on the table.
A new laminated top on the island blends with the refinished table

The monolithic old china cupboard
A china closet addition made by the previous owner provided plenty of storage but was somewhat monolithic. Since we were removing the doors to paint we decided to incorporate a style that has timeless appeal.

By cutting out the centers of the upper doors, adding glass and painting the back wall the Lilly Pond green primary color, the cabinet now has more of a country flavor and adds character to the room. The old brass finished hinges, handles and drawer pulls were too dark in the new color scheme and were replaced with chrome hardware.
Glass in the doors make a big difference

The tired old colors
When we painted the kitchen last time we chose off-white for the cupboards & cabinets and a soft yellow as the primary color. The top of center island and countertops were also an off-white.

This time we settled on bright white for the woodwork, Lilly Pond green for the primary color. The new countertops have a light oak wood grain finish that closely matches the refinished table and chairs. We also used glass in 2 cupboard doors in the corner opposited the china cupboard and again painted the back wall.
A bright new look

Stripping old vinyl floors in NO FUN
After weeks of construction it was time to replace the houses original vinyl flooring. The bad news was we had to strip the old vinyl ourselves because of fear of exposing the installers to possible asbestos content of older flooring. This was NOT FUN! Sue did most of it with a single edge razor blade paint scraper.

There was a problem with the first delivery of new vinyl but the finished product brightens the room and the pattern of small diamonds gives the room a larger look.
The new floor adds dimension to the room

A new stove to match the new look
A new stove and range hood in matching white and a fresh coat of paint on the ceiling continue to brighten the room. Of course everyone knows with a new stove you need new pots & pans to really cook properly.

The updated sink accented by fabric from the booth
A deeper stainless steel sink with a new hardware provide a more comfortable food prep & cleanup area. We also brought the fabric from the booth and chair cushions over to the valances on the vertical blinds over the window and patio door.

As you can see, what started out as basically a little extra seating turned into weeks of inconvenience, dust, takeout food, hard work and expense. We think the end result was worth it. The kitchen is more attractive, more modern and is better suited to our lifestyle.

Hot Dog and a Coke

The dining area as it appears today.

For those of you who have emailed us about the construction of the booth, I've added some drawings and photographs of the framing. The links below will display them in a separate window for printing. Some modifications may have been made to compensate for the existing walls and outlets. Remember these are rough sketches to assist in planning and are NOT architectural plans.

Booth One Drawing
Booth Two Drawing
Booth Three Drawing
Booth Four Drawing

Booth One Photo
Booth Two Photo
Booth Three Photo

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