The new Outlander Kitchen

My New Outlander Kitchen

If you follow on Facebook or Twitter, you'll have seen me mention a kitchen renovation at least once or twice in the last few months. We started the process last October, but unfortunately ran into some trouble with our initial contractor. When the quote comes back at double the budget, it's time to get a second opinion.

Enter IM Design, located right here on little old Pender Island. Santi and Patricia came over the day I called them to ask for help. They set my mind at ease immediately, especially about the budget. Our kitchen really isn't that large, and they assured me that they could transform our 14' galley into something special while sticking within the budget.

my outlander kitchen

Our new kitchen is filled with racing red and moonstone grey (can you see the twinkle?) ALUMINUM cabinets and drawers. The upper doors lift up rather than out, and all of the hinges and drawers are soft close. The back splash is also aluminum, and everything wipes up easily with a damp cloth.

The design is unique to IM Design, and is a result of Santi's 30 years of designing and manufacturing in aluminum, first in Spain, and now here on Pender. They guy is part artist and part engineer, with a little bit of magician thrown in. Every curve ball he and Patricia were thrown (and there's always a few when you renovate in an older house), was met with a quick, practical solution.

my outlander kitchen

The counter tops are quartz, and the curved bar that sits above the sink serves as a perch for guests who care to keep me company as I work.

I chose a Fisher & Paykel refrigerator, induction stove and hood fan, as well as a Miele dishwasher to fill in the gaps between the cabinets -- there's no doubt this is a serious upgrade from my Kenmore appliances of the past -- but while you don't need thousands of dollars of equipment to make delicious, tasty food, I think that after 12 years in my basic (aka ghetto) kitchen and almost 4 years of writing Outlander Kitchen, I've earned something a little better.

my outlander kitchen

At the same time, one should never take oneself too seriously...

my outlander kitchen

Hello dishwasher, down at the end! Many of you have questioned it's placement in the past, but I love where that thing sits. If I'm in the zone and cooking up a storm, I just keep pushing the dirty dishes down that long counter where I can ignore them...a lot like what happens in a restaurant kitchen with the dish pit.

If only I had a flesh and blood dishwasher as well.


Down at the end beside the dishwasher is the location of my pet project during this renovation, now referred to as The Pantry.

In it's previous life, The Pantry was just a big tall cupboard with the ugliest pair of mismatched doors you ever did see. There are not enough words to tell you how much I hated those doors. Inside, the cupboard was dark and deep, which meant I could never find anything.

my outlander kitchen

So before the cabinets and the electrician and the plumber got here, I renovated my little pantry. I ripped off the doors and shelves, lined the space with wainscoting, and built a custom set of u-shaped shelves specific to my storage needs.

I like the contrast between the rustic, marine-varnished wood shelves and the streamlined look of our new cabinets. And since no one can see the shelves from the rest of the living room or kitchen, I can be as messy as I want.

my outlander kitchen

I couldn't have asked for a more practical AND beautiful work space. Bold, sleek and sexy, it inspires me everyday as I develop and write the Outlander Kitchen Cookbook.

It's my dream come true.