The bad thing about buying a vintage house is that it comes with vintage appliances. All of them were quickly replaced with stainless steel…except for one odd appliance. That ugly harvest gold trash compactor was removed with no intentions of replacing it. In my opinion, trash compactors are becoming dated, so purchasing a new one was not going to add value to the house. The problem that left was an awkward hole in my cabinets.
Ripping out the trash compactor was the easy part. The problem was how to solve that really awkward space in the kitchen cabinets. Underneath the compactor there was visible slab and paneling was showing through the back.
I scoured Pinterest for quite awhile trying to find a solution. I didn’t want to build a normal cabinet with another cabinet door. I wanted to add some character with something unique. I found this display at Lowe’s, and it got my mind rolling.
I hired a wood-working guy to build me something similar. Instead of baskets that pull out like drawers, I wanted stationary shelves that could hold baskets, cookbooks, etc. He took it a step further and made sure the shelves were adjustable in case someone wanted to add different things with different heights. I honestly hadn’t thought of that, but I loved the idea!
I opted to stain it myself (because he obviously would charge me more). The problem was that I had NO clue what color to use. Luckily, I met the nicest employee in the paint section at Lowe’s. I brought in a trim piece and we tested different stains until we found the one that matched. We chose Minwax’s Provincial. I stained it three times and added a coat of polyurethane.
I plan to add some baskets to the bottom two shelves (I just haven’t been able to find the perfect ones) and cookbooks to the top smaller shelf.
I am quite happy with the transformation. He added wood backing on the back of the cabinet, over the slab, and the two sides. He then added trim on the front and bottom. It was a rather inexpensive addition, and I think it adds character.