My first memory of…

My first memory of considering a zinc countertop was with this lovely photo, which I think Kev sent me. That darker metal had such an oddly warm feel to it; not what you expect from metal! It's softer than stainless -- it'll mark up easily and patina over time (the way copper does) to a weathered grey. Zinc also has antibacterial properties, and you'll find it used for countertops in a lot of older Victorian homes (although I think that was generally zinc plating over steel, rather than solid zinc).

It took us a long time to find a zinc place we could afford and that did good work (we went with Alex at Custom Metal Home); if we'd been more handy, we could have tried doing it ourselves for much cheaper (though I doubt the finished result would look as clean and seamless). In the end, I'm just happy it's in. I think it looks lovely, and will only grow more gorgeous with time as it patinas.

Here's Piotr glueing the quartersawn oak island, preparatory to the zinc installation:

Here's the zinc installed! My kitchen is getting so close to done -- we just need the shelves (probably stainless) flanking the stove, the finish electrical (under cabinet lights, island outlets), and painting the anaglypta backsplash.

We did think about doing a fancier edge on the countertop -- we saw some very pretty options with dentil work, bevels, etc. But in the end, we decided there was enough going on in our kitchen already (especially if we ever do add that stained glass window), so we went with a basic eased edge. I'm happy with that choice.

And here's a close-up of the zinc, along with some burning bush branches trimmed from my yard. Mostly, my yard isn't ready for cutting much; too bare and scraggly. But there's one large branch of the burning bush that I'm planning to prune anyway, because it's hanging low and weird, so I felt free to cut a few branches from it for the house. They have tiny pale-yellow flowers on them that you can't see, and it's just so pretty. The zinc will be much darker a year from now -- remind me and I'll take another photograph and post it, for comparison purposes. :-)

So far, things I like best in this kitchen (that I haven't had before):

  • Wide single-bowl farmhouse sink.
  • Pull-out drawers -- we one have one lower corner cabinet (with a two-shelf lazy susan built in); the rest of the lower cabinets are drawers and they make it INFINITELY easier to find pots and pans.
  • The pot lid drawer -- one drawer is extra deep, and inside it, there's a separate pull-out shallow drawer for just pot lids. Love.
  • Freezer below fridge -- I don't use frozen stuff much, so for me, this fridge has way more easily-accessible usable space than I'm used to, and I like it; I gather it's also more energy-efficient this way?
  • Six-burner stove -- actually, two of the burners aren't really working, and it'll cost more to repair right now than we have to spare; maybe someday. But just having the extra space on the stove is really helpful -- when I was cooking for the party, with three or four pots going at once, it let me just slide hot dishes around, on and off burners as needed, and also allowed more space for extra-wide pots. LOVE it.
  • Blue cabinets. They're cheery. :-)

4 thoughts on “My first memory of…”

  1. Looks lovely. Victorian and modern all at once. And I think the stained glass will look just right when you fianlly get to it.

  2. The question was from me, not Dennis…I am surprised the metal is so thin. I would have thought at least an eighth of an inch.

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