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Old 09-02-2014, 10:08 AM
 
Location: Denver CO
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If you are planning this as a rental, I would update to a more modern look. Sure, there are some people who would love a retro 50s kitchen. But they aren't going to be the majority, and you'd be cutting severely into your potential rental pool if that is the way you go.

If you do decide you are going to live there, and *you* want a restored retro kitchen, then go for it. Just with the same caveat that if/when you do want to rent or sell, you'd face the same concerns of not everyone liking such a distinct style.
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Old 09-02-2014, 10:43 AM
 
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Whatever you do, don't paint it pink....
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Old 09-02-2014, 11:18 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emm74 View Post
If you are planning this as a rental, I would update to a more modern look. Sure, there are some people who would love a retro 50s kitchen. But they aren't going to be the majority, and you'd be cutting severely into your potential rental pool if that is the way you go.
It depends on where the OP lives. Around here, people are just glad to find a rental. There's a shortage of rentals.
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Old 09-02-2014, 11:51 AM
 
Location: Philaburbia
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Originally Posted by Hopes View Post
It depends on where the OP lives. Around here, people are just glad to find a rental. There's a shortage of rentals.
Not to mention that having a functional kitchen in a rental is a real plus. If the OP rehabs the current kitchen, it will be no different from a granite and stainless kitchen in function.
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Old 09-02-2014, 12:04 PM
 
Location: MA
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Oh my goodness, those curtains! Those are great, if you can refurbish that table those can go for a lot as well. What an amazing house museum you have, it's such an opportunity!

#2 sounds the most appealing. I don't agree with the gut idea for style or even cabinet drawers, etc. However it does look like you have a mold/moisture problem, that would probably be the first thing I'd check out before worrying about anything else.

I also agree with Hopes and Ohiogirl that if it's going to be a rental don't feel like you have to go big on updating. As a long time renter, I felt lucky to get clean and functional.
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Old 09-02-2014, 12:32 PM
 
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It does look like the paneling has mold.
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Old 09-02-2014, 12:35 PM
 
Location: Southwest Washington State
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I can answer the question about colors. Turquoise. Pink. Yellow.

My mom bought a yellow GE fridge that I thought would never die. In early '50s knotty pine was popular.

Also "wrought iron" which really meant plain black tubular metal legs. I remember pink and black being in vogue at one point.

Most retro kitchens end up being red, white and black. The kitchen sets were certainly often red. But my parents' set was green. Many kitchens were mostly white though. And cabs might have been birch plywood with "colonial" hardware, or they might have been painted white or made of white enamel on steel.

I think your cabs have aged awfully yellow, perhaps due to the varnish or lacquer used on them . I'd keep the stainless sink and drain board if it is salvageable. Many kitchens of that area had similar setups using white porcelain.
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Old 09-02-2014, 01:25 PM
 
Location: Moku Nui, Hawaii
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I guess I didn't mention location, which is a huge reason why we are hoping the seller has chosen our bid. (We should find out in a couple of hours when the Realtor gets in to work.) It's in Hawaii, in town and it has a HUGE ocean view. Semi-affordable rentals are scarce as hen's teeth around here, too, and we're hoping to keep the restoration/renovation inexpensive enough that we can rent it as an "affordable rental". That changes the taxes considerably. Although since it's located in Hawaii, we're offering the price of one if not two complete and ready to move in mainland houses - depending on the mainland location, of course. But it's all about location and we think it's a deal for the view and location, not such a good deal for the condition of the structure, though.

We already will have to repair the plumbing and electrical, davebarnes, that's been factored in. No HVAC, since it doesn't have any. If a house is situated right, HVAC is not necessary in Hawaii. This one, if anything, catches a bit too much of the tradewinds, but it's easier to block the wind than to cool the house with A/C due to high electrical rates. Approx. 44 cents a kilowatt hour for electricity around here so no A/C and the stove will probably still use propane. No natural gas in Hawaii, either.


The house was built in 1952, KathrynAragon, and matches the houses on either side of it. Same floor plan for four houses in a row. So, we kinda want to keep it matching the neighbors and they haven't done any exterior remodeling. Haven't seen their interiors, though. I think the kitchen foot print is workable and it's large enough with the table at the other corner of the kitchen.

The refrigerator is a bit awkwardly placed, though, might have to do something about that or get a small "full" sized one anyway. There will be a lot of traffic through the kitchen since the other entrance to the house involves a long stairway. The house is built on a hill. The stainless steel sink with the big aprons on either side is nice. Probably needs a new faucet, though.

So far, I'm thinking scrub and paint the cabinets and redo the counter tops with Formica or some sort of laminate just like they originally were. There will be a new additional ledge from the island over to the stove, though. They put a wooden square there to fill the gap, so making a proper sort of countertop there would be good. We will probably have to replace the stove, it looked un-salvageable, but I've not looked at it closely. The stove hood looks extremely clunky, too, but I don't know it's condition. So, other than adding a bit of counter top near the stove and seeing about setting the refrigerator a bit deeper into the wall somehow, those are about the only changes I'd probably make. Although I'm curious if the upper area above the cabinets is enclosed unusable space or if it can be made into storage or something. No HVAC so no vents up through there.

Well, I didn't really mention it, but the renovation is gonna have to be done without using a whole lot of money. So, other than contractors for the electrical and plumbing (required by Hawaii state), everything else is probably gonna have to be done by us. Sigh! I wish we had a big family nearby to rope in on this. Although maybe I can lure them in with a Hawaii "vacation". Ha! Such evil ideas.

Ohiogirl81, nice hopeful post! I'm thinking color scheme #2 might be the way we end up going. Although the red counter tops seem a bit over the top, but something not bland is a good thing, IMHO. This is Hawaii, so folks are a little more exuberant with their colors than many mainland places. We just had a ten minute walk through since the house is in such bad shape that the sellers consider it a tear down so I didn't have time to look at the stove closely. The sellers had us sign a waiver before they'd even let us walk through it, they think it's that bad. They are almost correct, but we're pretty lenient on what we consider "salvageable".


Aloha, HotHulaMaui! I wish we could afford to entirely gut it, but there's not a lot there to gut, really. Single wall construction so no paneling/siding to take off. All we can do is scrub and paint the walls. The cabinets are solid wood under that mess, so scrubbing, sanding and painting will end up with better cabinets than we could afford to buy, really. You know how pressboard turns into oatmeal in our climate. As well as the cost of new solid wood cabinets. I'm not sure what's under the roll linoleum on the floor, but that will probably come up and then either be refinished and remain just wood floors or install linoleum tile. I'm thinking new linoleum tiles would be the easy answer. No ceramic tile since it's up on post and pier and old wood floors are too flexible for ceramic tiles to not crack. What colors of paint should I use for the 50's look? I'm hoping for 50's that isn't going to clash terribly much with current sensibilities. At the moment, I think the 40's color schemes are more in tune with current styles, maybe taking it back a decade to the 40's colors might be good?

Sorry, Chet Everett, there isn't any wall paneling to remove. The house is "single wall construction" which was a typical construction method in Hawaii at that time. It is still in use occasionally now, too. That "paneling" is the exterior walls of the house. That one board is all the walls there are. Which means electrical is run in wooden channels on the inside of the house and the plumbing is visible on the outside of the house. Sometimes the exterior drainage is picked out in matching trim to go with the eaves and door frames, but I think painting it to match the house color is nicer. The old "builder" grade cabinets are solid wood, which survives in Hawaii where as most of the ones we could afford to replace them with would be composite wood which would die in a few years. I'll check the drawer placements, though. The refrigerator corner is the most troublesome, I think.

Sorry, I should have mentioned the Hawaii location, that's gonna make what's available entirely different than many places. No Ikea here, about all we have are Home Depot and Lowes along with Ace hardware. Well, there's custom places, too, but that's a bit over the top. Hmm, epoxy resin paint is interesting, though. Would that stand up as a counter top type of paint? Although their range of colors is dismal. The Big Chill line of appliances is nice, although I doubt we would buy one and ship it in from the mainland. Again, I should have mentioned the project location.

Yeah, I know about the "how could it be vintage" when it's stuff that we remember, Hemlock140. If the table is restorable, then I'd probably use the same new laminate on the table top as the kitchen counter tops and reupholster the chairs in a matching vinyl. I'm leaning towards the cheery red color, perhaps. Then toning down the cheery red with white/gray and pale yellow. The white/black/red of the 50's is a bit harsh for today's tastes, perhaps? Although they could be used as accent colors. I was thinking maybe of using that type and color of linoleum tile and making a checkerboard pattern with light and dark tans or light gray and white, perhaps.

True, Nodpete, a true 50's palette would be a bit much, IMHO. I'm trying to get the flavor of the 50's and still keep it palatable for current tastes. A pink and gray Pontiac would be a hoot! It would have to be a convertible, though.

Thanks for the links, Ohiogirl81! I'd found the first one, but not the rest of them. I'll check them out in detail.

I like the Artistry line, Hopes. Since it's a major manufacturer, perhaps some of them will be available locally. Having a matching microwave would be good, there's not one there at the moment. I think white will be the color of the appliances. Did they have stainless steel in the 50's? Not that it really matters, though, since in Hawaii Stainless isn't. Well, it "stains" less anyway, but that doesn't mean it doesn't rust at all.

Emm74, the rental market is tight enough at this time that if it's an affordable rental I could do it in purple, pink and gold glitter and there'd still be a line of renters waiting for it. But it could likely end up as a rental, which is probably why the 50's look is going to be somewhat toned down. Hmm, didn't they have that Styrofoam "popcorn" ceilings with gold glitter back then, too? That would be a hoot! Not happening, I don't think, but it would be a hoot!

Wildcard~, yeah, I guess no pink. How come nobody likes pink? Red maybe, though?

Ohiogirl81, it will be functional! Guaranteed! Folks can't afford to eat out all the time around here and prepared foods are too expensive. Either we will want to use the kitchen ourselves or we will want our renters to be able to use the kitchen so they will be able to afford their rent easily.

Yup, there's a bit of moisture around here, tribechamy. Fortunately the house isn't weather tight (most houses in Hawaii aren't) so it didn't get too much mold in it in twenty years. I'll be wearing a hazmat suit while doing the initial scrub down, though, and every surface everywhere will be scrubbed. Not washed - scrubbed. Fortunately as a single wall structure, all the surfaces can be reached.

So far, color scheme #2 seems to be the hands down winner. Clean, functional and attractive is what I'm hoping for by the time we're done with it.

Hmm, those are interesting colors, silibran. Where would each color go? Pink counter tops, turquoise walls, yellow cabinets? Knotty pine would mean we'd be putting in either new cabinets or paneling and I think paint would keep us in more in line with what meager budget we have. Also, I'm not sure if we could get knotty pine here that was termite treated. There have been termites in this house, first thing is gonna be a termite tenting. Well, vacuum most of the mess up, tear out what's gonna be torn out and then termite treat the house. Then scrub everything down and paint and refinish.

Yeah, the red, white and black seems typical, although that seems more Metro 50's than we are here. I always think of red/white/black as New York City 50's somehow. Hmm, Turquoise, pink and yellow. Interesting. No red anywhere?
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Old 09-02-2014, 02:45 PM
 
Location: Philaburbia
33,117 posts, read 62,006,885 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hotzcatz View Post
The refrigerator is a bit awkwardly placed, though, might have to do something about that or get a small "full" sized one anyway.
I'm not sure what you can do about it, with the door being right there. You could move it to the other side of the kitchen, but that would mean eliminating that really cool peninsula.

Quote:
The stainless steel sink with the big aprons on either side is nice. Probably needs a new faucet, though.
The sink is great. Do try to keep it if at all possible. A new faucet is a cheap, easy fix.

Quote:
We will probably have to replace the stove, it looked un-salvageable, but I've not looked at it closely.
Gas stoves very rarely fail - not too many moving parts. It might just need a good cleaning, and some adjustment as far as the fuel intake.

Quote:
I'm thinking color scheme #2 might be the way we end up going. Although the red counter tops seem a bit over the top, but something not bland is a good thing, IMHO.
The kitchen is big enough, and bright enough, that the red counters won't overwhelm the room, especially when coupled with a softer yellow or grey for the walls. Red, grey and yellow were popular color combinations back then - think of all those tropical floral prints.

Quote:
This is Hawaii, so folks are a little more exuberant with their colors than many mainland places.


Quote:
The house is "single wall construction" which was a typical construction method in Hawaii at that time. It is still in use occasionally now, too. That "paneling" is the exterior walls of the house. That one board is all the walls there are. Which means electrical is run in wooden channels on the inside of the house and the plumbing is visible on the outside of the house.
How interesting. I'd love to see a photo of the exterior, if and when you get a chance.

Quote:
The old "builder" grade cabinets are solid wood, which survives in Hawaii where as most of the ones we could afford to replace them with would be composite wood which would die in a few years. I'll check the drawer placements, though.
Every kitchen has one or two drawers that you can't open at the same time, especially a U-shaped kitchen. This kitchen is roomy enough that it shouldn't be a big deal.

I am wondering, though, how you'll deal with the gap to the left of the stove between the stove and the peninsula, which surely will change in size if you need a new stove. Is there a cabinet already installed there - it's hard to see. You might have to have a cabinet made, and then you can paint it to match the others.

Quote:
Did they have stainless steel in the 50's?
Yes, they did.
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Old 09-02-2014, 04:42 PM
 
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Full stainless steel appliances weren't popular in the 50s. You're much better off getting a white appliances or bright color appliances. Don't keep the one you already have. It's going to be disgusting inside And it's 1970s refrigerator style. That's why I recommended the Artistry line. The curves are very appropriate for the 1950s period. Google 1950s refrigerator and you'll see they were rounded and had stainless steel handles and knobs.
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