Hi, I’m Jim Garnett.
And I’m Lynn Garnett. Welcome to our 1927 bungalow (Note: “Bungalow” is a style of home). Come on inside and see the kitchen.
Jim and Lynn thought about the design of their 100 square foot galley kitchen for almost ten years before they started work. The result is full of big ideas and is one-of-a-kind. Jim built everything himself in their basement woodshop.
This is my spice rack. All of my spices are alphabetized, which makes for ease of use.
This is the kitchen ladder, that I built out of white oak and pegged with walnut. (Note: “Pegged” is a style of building using pegs instead of nails.) The ladder, which is housed in a little pocket at the top, just pulls out and just leans right up against the upper cabinet work. It provides access to our books and our wine, and it makes for a very usable space.
Another great feature in the kitchen is the wrap center. One thing I disliked was having boxes of foils and wraps stuck in the drawer. The paper towels, the wax paper, the foil, the saran wrap is all on wooden dowels and very easy to use. And that is built right back into the wall, because we had to make use of every available space in the kitchen.
The kitchen is the soul of the house for me, and it is where I spend most of my time. If I’m not reading books, I’m in the kitchen cooking. I also can. (Note: “Can” means the take fresh food and put it into a sealed container.) I’m very old-fashioned, so I like to make everything from scratch, so this is the place where I am all the time.
Lynn uses the small pantry as a baking station. First of all, I have all of our food in mason jars. These are not alphabetized however. It’s a great way to see how much inventory I have. What I need. What I don’t need. And I have my wine bottle opener. And this is very easy to use, and I love it. They have these in the galleys of most airlines. I have my rolling pin here, and Jim built the holder for my rolling pin, so it’s ready to use whenever I’m rolling out my pastry on my soapstone counter. I chose soapstone, because it stays cool, while I roll out my pastry. I also have a special spice rack just for my baking spices.
Another wonderful feature of this pantry is this great deep drawer that my husband built. And it has utensil trays that slide back and forth. And I have everything divided according to use. So I have ice cream scoops in one area. I have wooden spoons, fruit utensils. It’s just a great space.
It occurred to me early on that the wasted space would be down at the baseboard, and then I fashioned some secret drawers in there, using some technology inspired by (Thomas) Jefferson’s Monticello with weights that actually drop down into the crawl space of the house. And it’s operated by an electric solenoid where, if you push this little red button by the pastry spices, the drawer pops open to reveal pot lids which comes in pretty darn handy.
Jim is… He will be embarrassed for me to say this, but he truly is a renaissance man. We live in Charlottesville, Virginia, home of Thomas Jefferson. He very much reminds me of Thomas Jefferson.
This room is four years in the making, and it’s still not yet complete. It’s the joke of everyone. Is the kitchen finished? To which, I always say, “Almost, but not quite.”