Sunday, 13 January 2013

The eco-friendly, green kitchen REVEAL!!!!

We are finally done! The kitchen is completely finished except for some DIY blinds but they can wait.

We love our new kitchen. We really enjoy the extra counter space we gained and being able to cook at the same time. I am not a big fan of open concept, but I must admit that by removing the wall between the kitchen and the living room the space just filled up with light. It's so pleasant. There is nothing comparable to the morning sun shining through your kitchen while making breakfast. Here are the before and after pics.



After - cabinet extended 

Before - kitchen as an enclosed room
After - wall removed and open concept created
After - the view from the living room
Newly installed shelf by Misha

 Here is a list of the green renovation products that we have used and where we got them from:
  1. DRYWALL - CertainTeed Easi-Lite™ Lightweight Gypsum GreenGuard Certified. Purchased from Rona. Read about it HERE
  2. ULTRATOUCH COTTON INSULATION- Used as a wall insulator. Purchased from Eco Building Resource. Read about it HERE
  3. FORMALDEHYDE-FREE CABINETS - Custom made using PureBond plywood from Columbia Forest Products. Read about it HERE
  4. IKEA NUMERAR OAK COUNTERTOP - Purchased from IKEA. Finished with natural walnut oil. Oil purchased from the Big Carrot. Read about it HERE
  5. LOW VOC PAINT - Used for the wall and cabinets. Purchased from Homestead House. Read about it HERE
  6. ALUMINIUM WINDOWS - Made by Aluminum Window Designs. Installed by Encore. Read about it HERE
  7. DURAFOAM 0-VOC SPRAY FOAM INSULATION- Used for sealing the windows. Purchased from Eco Building Resource.
  8. LOW VOC CAULKING - Used for sealing the windows. Supplied by Encore.
  9. LOW VOC GLUE - Used for gluing down the cement boards. Purchased from Home Depot. Read about it HERE

Lessons learned:
  • Be vocal about your green priorities and don't be afraid of micromanaging the work. We found that contractors in general are unfamiliar with using green products and they tend to default to products they know.
  • Avoid renovating during the summer. It's renovation season and it's challenging to book a good tradesman for smaller jobs. We had contractors not even returning our calls.
  • Be prepared to spend time researching and sourcing green renovation products. While they do exist, local options are still challenging to find. 

The best part of our renovation is that we are experiencing no off-gassing or ill effects from any part of the work. We rest easy knowing we did everything that we could to make our house a safe and healthy home. It is totally worth the time and effort to use healthy, green alternatives.



  1. This is fantastic. Congrats on the great finished product! I know how much work it must have been.

  2. We're so glad you like it. It was a lot of planning and work. Thanks for your nice comments. On to the bathroom reno!