Island House: A "Counter Productive" Week

Solid Wood Countertops

It was too good a pun to pass up…This week we installed our wood countertops. It went very smoothly. The cut outs for both the induction cooktop and the undermount sink went very well. We deliberated for some time as to how to cut out for the sink as the undermounting of it meant that any mistakes would be highly visible (read: unacceptable). We considered using a router but in the end used the Festool plunge cut track saw (an expensive but totally useful, incredible tool) for the long cuts on all four sides and then a Makita jigsaw to finish the rounded corners. The Festool orbital sander took care of anything that needed smoothing and overall, it was an easy process and looks lovely.

Zuhnë Kitchen Sink & Faucet

The undermount sink is made by Zuhnë, a company I recommend checking out if you are looking for high quality, stainless steel sinks. They offer undermount, traditional, and farmhouse sinks. They also offer faucets. All are beautifully made, come with lifetime warranties and are packed with incredible care. All needed parts are included for installation.  Customer service is amazing, any questions you might have and they will do their best to help almost immediately. 

German Zuhnë undermount stainless steel kitchen sink & Della faucet 

Installing Appliances

After the countertops and sink were installed, we connected the dishwasher and got the cooktop wired in. After that, it was merely to oil the countertops and enjoy cooking in a new space. No more dishes in the bathtub!  

Treads & Risers

From the kitchen we moved out to the stairwell and this week installed the treads and risers. I sanded them today and we finished installing the last bit of flooring in the house which was at the top landing of the stairs. 

Natural pine treads & risers, ready to be varnished. Newel posts & hand rails this week.

Odds & Ends (and mostly trash)

Our last major accomplishment for the week was to take the garage full of cardboard recycling and disturbing amount of styrofoam packing boards to the transfer station. While it sounds a small thing, it was actually a huge delight to see that the garage is now open again and a regained work space. 


The unfolding week will have us build newel posts for the stairs and then install the handrail. I plan to finish all the floor varnishing this week - the stairwell, master bedroom and second floor hallway are all that remain to be done. It’s possible that we’ll also get shelving installed in the built in bookcases this week, but the stairs remain primary. This week’s work has brought a lot of enjoyment and seemed to come together with great ease…an unlooked for treat!