Jana and Christian Scriba

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BEFORE
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AFTER
Name: Jana and Christian
Surname: Scriba
Location: Cape Town, Western Cape
Entry Date: Jun 30, 2023
Category: DIY
Project: Kitchen

About the Project:

In October 2020, we bought a quaint 120-year-old Victorian house in Mowbray, Cape Town with the intention to renovate. With two professional architects living under one roof, one can only imagine how many design iterations it took to decide on the layout for our new kitchen 🙂 We went to work during the builders’ holiday…

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In October 2020, we bought a quaint 120-year-old Victorian house in Mowbray, Cape Town with the intention to renovate. With two professional architects living under one roof, one can only imagine how many design iterations it took to decide on the layout for our new kitchen 🙂

We went to work during the builders’ holiday of 2022, having just spent six months living in a half-built house with no kitchen, and started the four-week endeavour of building a new kitchen from scratch (with no woodworking or cabinetry-making experience, I might add).

It started on the drawing board, planning and fiddling with layouts that soon grew into a pragmatic project. Firstly, we had to do the groundwork: we applied self-leveling screed to the existing surface bed, followed by bonding agent and copious amounts of tiling adhesive to lay the slate tiles (with thickness variations leading to many hours of adjustment). Once level and dry, the black grout was applied in the +_ 8mm joints, sealed and finished.

Our material of choice, Compact 88 and melamine, was cut and edged to our specifications and delivered (many hours were spent sorting through the timber pieces). Drill bits and dust aside, we started constructing the carcasses and drawers, drilling what felt like a million pilot holes to receive the screws that hold everything in place. We levelled and positioned the frameworks to receive the countertops and drawers, fixing hinges and finally hanging the doors. The countertop has a curved edge, which we had to make a jig for in order to router and chamfer the edge.

With all the dirty work done, the final coat of sealant to treat and waterproof the wood was applied and the handles were fixed in place.

This is the biggest and most intricate DIY project that we have ever embarked on. The process was daunting at first, but well worth the blood, sweat and tears we poured into it. We are very happy with the outcome.

Budget Breakdown:

Materials:
Carcass, counter and door front timber: melamine (oak edging), Compact 88 High Density Fiber Board (incl cutting)
29000
1L Rubio Monocoat Sealant and Stain
2500
Drawer runners, hinges, handles and screws
5500
Plumbing sundries
300
Sink
2500
Mixer
1400
Plugs
1500
Light fittings
700
LED and driver - reused
0
Stove - reused
0
Oven
8000
Paint
1000
Slate tiles and sundries
4000
56400

Contractors:

0
Grand Total
R56400