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Everything and the Kitchen Sink: Remodel Your Kitchen without Losing Your Mind Paperback – Apr 1 2005


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing (April 1 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0740750194
  • ISBN-13: 978-0740750199
  • Product Dimensions: 25.5 x 22.3 x 1.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 726 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,394,340 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Amazon.com: 27 reviews
43 of 45 people found the following review helpful
To the rescue! May 13 2005
By Jan Maher - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I've been waiting since February 1981 to do something about my kitchen. That's the month we moved into our house. Everything and the Kitchen Sink has come into my life -not a moment too soon! - to move me from mere contemplation to actual accomplishment. It is a thorough guide to redoing this most important room in the house. (I mean, think about it. Without food in your life, there'd be no need for any other rooms.) But wait! There's more! It's Readable. In fact, downright amusing.

A few highlights for me:

The Introduction. How many times do you even read the introduction to a book, let alone enjoy it, let further alone find a personal message to you in it? The Introduction reminds me of the centrality of the kitchen in my family life and most emphatically assures me that I should not have to wait decades to make my kitchen functional and aesthetically pleasing.

The quizzes. Little quizzes and questionnaires throughout the book helped me articulate not only our personal style (Busy Slobs, or words to that effect...) but also what's been keeping us from getting a start on this kitchen. We've been of two minds (my husband's and mine) about how long we're likely to stay in this house. We know when we sell a developer will probably just knock it down and start over. That argues for not bothering, or at least for not putting much money into what we do bother with. But something clearly has to be done. For one thing, the original designer of our house obviously thought that a woman's place was not only in the kitchen, but alone down a hallway. Yes, the sink is in an "L" away from everything else that matters. The passageway is so narrow that cooperating in cooking or washing dishes becomes a clown routine in blocking, waiting, bumping, squeezing by. Then there's the fact that two-thirds of the cupboards assume the person using them is pushing six feet tall. (I'm short.) Add to that two dogs of various shepherd (i.e., stick CLOSE to the herd) persuasions - a factor no other book or magazine I've ever read on this subject has even acknowledged - and you've got a recipe for daily frustration. Not good.

Here's where Everything and the Kitchen Sink comes to the rescue. There are marvelous pictures. And useful budget charts. And constant encouragement to figure out how we really use our kitchen, and plan from that base. And other helpful hints sprinkled throughout the book. I can feast my eyes on the fancy stoves and state of the art refrigerators and duplicate dishwashers, but I can acknowledge that I am destined to be a "rustic" gal. Paint will be my friend. Shiny stainless steel is out (expensive and not good for slobs anyway), "distressed," folky, and mobile is in. I'm having great fun figuring it out. Carts and drawer units on wheels will replace the built-in cabinets. (We'll take the old ones to the basement and "improve" our laundry area - following another suggestion in the book about how to recycle and minimize waste. And if/when we move, we'll take the new ones with us.) It's more important to us to share the kitchen and the tasks in it than to have an immense sink, so the double-deep behemoth that fills the hallway will come out and a sink sized for mobile homes will replace it. This will enable us to get by each other without having to take time for a minuet. Heck, maybe even stand side by side to wash the dishes.

I've taken samples of the ancient earthquake-cracked plaster and dog-water-warped floor tiles to the lab (one of the book's very helpful suggestions). They'll tell me if there's asbestos in either so I can proceed safely. I've calculated the costs (with the help of worksheets in the book) and strategized the financing. I've measured it all out and drawn my plans to scale. I've pondered the traffic flow, factored in the canines.

After twenty-four years, I'm ready to start. Thanks to Everything and the Kitchen Sink.
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Great Design Ideas (and a Fun Read, Too!) Feb. 11 2007
By A reviewer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This charming, clever and extremely user friendly book was a Godsend during our kitchen remodel. There are lots of helpful comparison charts so you can see the pros and cons of different materials before you buy them (not just what they tell you when they're trying to sell you stuff, but the honest truth, like how granite stains if you don't seal it regularly, or how painted cabinets crack over time). There's great advice about design styles, and about designing your kitchen to fit both your budget and your family's lifestyle (even including the dos and don'ts for families with small kids, families with pets, people who are neatness challenged, etc.).

There's also a lot of nice extras, like cost cutting tips, advice about financing, how to interview installers or designers so you don't end up with a lemon, how to budget realistically, and everything you wanted to know about product, from cabinet wood species to faucet finishes to flooring to high-tech appliances.

It's clear that the writers know their stuff, and I would suggest anyone even thinking about remodeling their kitchen read this as part of the starter package! You won't find better. One caveat: This is not the book that's going to walk you through doing the job yourself from A to Z. It doesn't teach you how to do your own electrical, or give you a crash course in laying flooring. But then again, as the authors will tell you, if you're going to do this yourself, you need more skills than what you can get just reading a book (and it could be dangerous to think otherwise). Skilled do it yourselfers will find this most useful for the product information (of which there's plenty), design style info and insider tips.

Overall, we found this to be enormously helpful, plus great fun to read. Many of these books are dry as dust, but this was engaging and very funny in parts -- yet still very informative. If you have designs on a new kitchen, be sure to read this book first! We highly recommend it!
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
A Great Kitchen Planning Tool! April 22 2005
By J. Flaherty - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This clever book is packed full of great practical info for saving time and money when doing your kitchen over. Whether you're doing a full scale remodel or just sprucing things up a bit, Everything and the Kitchen Sink has some great advice about how to pick the right products, find a great designer, and avoid nightmare contractors. There are even some creative ideas for how to finance the project. Authors Costa and Manning clearly know their stuff--and they write in such a down to earth style, you'll feel like you're getting advice from a good friend. If you've ever thought about doing your kitchen over, this is the book you want to start with. Funny, clever, informative, definitely a five-star book!
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
A MUST HAVE!!!!! April 27 2005
By Pete Smith - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
"Everything and The Kitchen Sink" by Janice Costa and Daina Manning is a "must have" for anyone who is considering tackling the most daunting of tasks: remodeling a kitchen.

I find it to be a quick, easy and fun read that offers a ton of practical information. Having the book as a resource took the stress out of a kitchen remodel project that me and my wife were contemplating (putting off) and not only gave us confidence with it, but made it fun! I highly recommend this book!
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Finally- a remodeling book that everyone can actually enjoy! April 4 2005
By Barbara Garner - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
What a great book- I have been pouring over remodeling books for literally months- and have been so frustrated with books in which the author assumes you are either 1. a designer or 2. a millionaire. There are so many unbelievably dry home improvement books out there that are simply a chore to read. Finally! A book that is a pleasure to read! Ms Costa and Ms. Manning have created a book that is a humorous easy read with beautiful, detailed pictures, helpful charts and all kinds of information geared to the average human just looking to remodel! With information on how to actually finance this endeavor, they show us that you don't need to be a millionaire just to have the kitchen you deserve. The charts are easy to read and help by showing the pros and cons of different choices you will be faced with, whether you choose to use a designer or remodel on your own. Also- rather than assuming (like those other books) that everything will just go perfectly throughout the process, this book addresses how to handle the bumps you will encounter along the way! This book is a very funny, down to earth approach to remodeling your kitchen that anyone can understand and apply. I highly recommend!


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