63 Comments

  1. Jessie
    May 5, 2015 @ 10:21 am

    Just wanted to chime in about a giant carrera marble island. My 2 cents: Do not put the sink in it. Leave it alone in its beautiful marble glory. Everyone told me to put the sink in mine, and I didn’t, and every year at Xmas when every inch is covered in frosting and sprinkles and cookies, I am happy that I stuck with the giant marble island workspace. you can see here: http://shadeofabeechtree.blogspot.com/2008/09/kitchen-details.html
    I LOVE having all that space for crafting, cooking, whatever.

    Reply

  2. Kate Sparks
    May 5, 2015 @ 10:21 am

    I vote for storage. Moving plumbing gets really expensive. Besides you can take it with you should you ever have to relocate due to jobs/family.

    Reply

  3. Linda
    May 5, 2015 @ 10:24 am

    A new day….balancing practical matters with the GFT. I think you are on the right track. Yay for Paul.

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  4. Gaylin
    May 5, 2015 @ 10:25 am

    The clean look of Carrera marble would be so stunning that any thing else in the kitchen on walls or floor would be unimportant!
    Sigh** so beautiful

    Reply

  5. di
    May 5, 2015 @ 10:26 am

    I always thought drawers would be the best solution well done you!!! Now for the Craigslist troll to do her magic and find the new gft that will absolutely suit the piano and bring the awesomeness of your kitchen dreams to life.

    Reply

  6. Cynthia
    May 5, 2015 @ 10:28 am

    By golly, you’ve got it. Congrats. Major decision made and the remaining decisions can now fall into place.
    Although perhaps consider a white granite top.
    Never would have guessed your height. Never.
    I have such fun reading your blog. Please do not stop.

    Reply

  7. Brittany
    May 5, 2015 @ 10:34 am

    No ideas here. I just want to hug the gorgeousness that is the piano island. I think I may have a full-blown crush.

    Reply

  8. Rhonda
    May 5, 2015 @ 10:44 am

    Yep, I agree with #5. Keeping the piano base totally intact and adding a marble top will be a showstopper for sure! You will have the most gorgeous kitchen ever someday! And there is no way that you are 6 feet tall! You look like such a tiny little thing in your videos! However, I’m sure you know your true height! haha!

    Reply

  9. tammigirl
    May 5, 2015 @ 10:47 am

    If it would fit in my van and you had said Cleveland…

    But not until the Cavs have won the championship, please.

    Reply

  10. Donna Marchlewski
    May 5, 2015 @ 10:47 am

    This piano begs to be keeper of drawers to hold all your small kitchen wares.

    Also, the required plumbing pipes for a sink and/or dishwasher would simply ruin the lines of this beautiful piano; no matter how well they were disguised.

    Reply

  11. Kelly
    May 5, 2015 @ 11:01 am

    Totally agree with everyone who voted ‘no sink in the piano.’ Practically, I’ve lived with both sink in an island and sink against the wall. Having the sink in the island always meant dirty dishes out in the middle of the kitchen and then clean ones piled in the middle of the kitchen. (If I could redo my kitchen, I would get an extra-long sink against the wall so that I had room enough for dishes to drain-dry in the sink. ) Anyway, can’t wait to see what Paul accomplishes during his “vacation”!

    Reply

    • JFS in IL
      May 5, 2015 @ 11:02 am

      good point about the dishes, had not thought of that but you are so right, that is what would happen.

      Reply

  12. JFS in IL
    May 5, 2015 @ 11:02 am

    I, too, vote for NOT putting a sink in the middle of the marble. Besides, if you do leave room at the counter for the other item, you will never find it. If you put the sink in the counter area…then you WILL find a huge bookcase. Which you can find another use for, or put a sink in the middle of (??)

    So – which is it? Leave room for the bookcase and never find one…or jinx yourself into finding one by leaving the sink where it is. The Fates await your decision.

    Reply

  13. Julie
    May 5, 2015 @ 11:03 am

    Carrera marble will be beautiful. I have it in my kitchen (which is from the 1920s — although the marble was our recent addition, as the original tile countertop was too battered to keep) and love it. Don’t worry about keeping it pristine. Scratches and stains don’t really show; they just help add a lovely patina.

    Reply

  14. Bols
    May 5, 2015 @ 11:11 am

    It’s carrara marble, not carrera.

    Reply

    • Siouxie Q
      May 5, 2015 @ 4:08 pm

      Oh Bols, you sure know how to bring the party.

      Reply

  15. Heather
    May 5, 2015 @ 11:18 am

    I love the idea of a huge piece of marble on the piano! I recently had to abandon my kitchen island plans.

    Reply

  16. Joellyn
    May 5, 2015 @ 11:25 am

    I personally think the gorgeous legs of that piano need to have the open space underneath to preserve the furniture-ness, as you already feel. That said, I do actually quite like an island sink. It is fun to do dishes and have someone sit on the other side for a chat whilst working away. But it is very necessary to have the dishwasher there too, and to have plenty of room all around the sink. And it easily gets cluttered. So yeah, I also vote to keep the piano sinkless in this case!

    Reply

  17. Margy
    May 5, 2015 @ 11:29 am

    Vote no sink in the island. I have a Carrara island, and love it…now. At first, I freaked over keeping it clean, stain, etch and scratch free, and made myself insane. I kept paper on it for 2 weeks after we got it, and just peaked at it a few times a day! Once the inevitable started, and I stopped investigating who had been responsible for every mark, I got over it. You only see the issues in certain day light, never at night, and it does show the love. Mine is polished, and I’ve read recently that honed shows less. Also consider Calcutta Gold. Little bit more money, but on your piece it would be absolutely incredible. best of luck!

    Reply

  18. Amy B.
    May 5, 2015 @ 11:40 am

    I vote no sink in the piano as well. Don’t mess with the piano-ness of it. It’s lovely as is, so the less you do to it the better. Also, I have a very long, 3′ wide peninsula in my kitchen that’s just counter top, no cook top, no sink. I *love* it. I sew, so it’s the perfect place to cut out my projects. It’s great for spreading out when baking. It’s fabulous as a buffet for family parties. If I had moved the stove or sink to the peninsula I would always be working around them. There is nothing like long, uninterrupted counter space in a kitchen. You won’t regret it. You are so fabulous I’m sure you can find a GFT for the sink wall that the sink can work with. 🙂

    Reply

  19. judy
    May 5, 2015 @ 11:41 am

    I keep picturing the marble top shaped like a baby grand and I swear it has to have some piano keys inset…..my conservative brain monkey keeps screaming tacky corny, bad bad bad taste! but the Liberace lemur says yes!!!!!!!!!!!!and with a huge candelabra! Great post and really reveals your alter ego which is one very very smart Lady

    Reply

  20. Mary Beth
    May 5, 2015 @ 11:53 am

    I don’t understand why the Craigslist hall tree qualifies as serving no purpose! Seems to me it would easily go on top of the van (it is flat on the back!) and would provide great and beautiful coat/hat storage!! I’m happy to mentor you in justifying any purchase….

    Reply

    • Sunnie Mitchell
      May 5, 2015 @ 1:51 pm

      I was thinking exactly the same things!

      Reply

  21. Matthew
    May 5, 2015 @ 11:58 am

    Why not use the material from the top to make drawer fronts for the open space where the keys were? Same material same patina. Oh and solid top no sink.

    Reply

    • Jessica@CapeofDreams
      May 5, 2015 @ 12:35 pm

      I had the same idea about using the top to make drawer fronts, but I think that you could also use the piece that you take off the front. Would it be easier to put drawers on both sides? A drawer that went all the way through would probably be too deep to pull out all the way. Drawers on both sides would allow you to store a lot more.

      Reply

  22. Jacquelyn
    May 5, 2015 @ 12:31 pm

    I was hoping you would leave the top on, it is such a beautiful piece of wood. I put plexiglass or real glass across the top to protect but still show off the beauty of something. Also hinge the drawer front and have Paul build roll out drawers. Then no cutting up that beautiful wood.

    Reply

    • Sandy
      May 5, 2015 @ 5:17 pm

      Excellent idea! That would keep the piano illusion going, I’m sure Paul could pull it off beautifully.

      Reply

    • Kate
      May 9, 2015 @ 12:08 am

      I totally agree, was my thought too. What makes it unique is that its a piano, not a counter top. Anybody can have marble. go for tempered glass and drawers in both long sides… lots of storage lots of prep room.

      Reply

    • Carol H.
      May 27, 2015 @ 7:51 pm

      Yes. Glass on top of original wood is how I would do this. Shame to lose the look of all that beautiful wood.

      Reply

  23. Mary Deckert
    May 5, 2015 @ 12:46 pm

    I just Googled “pianos with marble tops.” Some really beautiful examples of people making them into dining room tables, but no islands. I think it’s going to be beautiful. I vote for no sink in the island ~ it will be a great work space and the expanse of marble so pretty.

    Reply

  24. ceara
    May 5, 2015 @ 12:53 pm

    Victoria,

    This project is super! Practically speaking- you will want a 5/8″ thick piece of plywood as a substrate for your beautiful marble top- it needs solid substrate, not just drawer divider supports. (Think about the dancing that will happen on top later, and how sad it would be if your marble cracked.) And I know you never go for anything because it is less difficult, but having drawers on one side only, and making them super long, full extension drawers can work well too.

    Reply

  25. Lorie Shaffer
    May 5, 2015 @ 1:05 pm

    Carrara marble! Nothing else would be as perfect. I lived with Carrara counter tops for years. Love, love, love them. Seal it and let it Live!

    Reply

  26. Rachel
    May 5, 2015 @ 1:14 pm

    Doesn’t sound like you need encouragement on the carrara front, but I’ll throw in my two cents anyways. I read arguments from both camps on the internet prior to buying, got my sample and dutifully did stain tests – but honestly, my mind was made up to love it before even starting the process. It’s our island countertop (our perimeter is concrete) and is our primary work area. I may juice lemons over the concrete, but otherwise I’m not too terribly careful and try not to prowl around it protectively too much when we have guests. There are definitely etches, some from an obvious cause (like a lemon eating contest between my husband and our nieces and nephews) and others that seems to appear overnight mysteriously, but I think we’re entering the territory where they are starting to meld together. I am definitely the only person who notices them. I wouldn’t have chosen anything else, and it’ll look perfect with the piano.

    Reply

  27. Kay
    May 5, 2015 @ 1:19 pm

    So interesting. Once you have the GFT of your dreams, you go all practical. This aspect of your personality must be what keeps Paul sane.

    Reply

  28. Stephanie Hobson
    May 5, 2015 @ 1:36 pm

    Omg, I can’t stop looking at that gorgeous foot pedal! What marvelous plan do you have for it?

    Oh, and I think your decision not to put a sink in the island is good.

    Reply

  29. Linda S Montgomery
    May 5, 2015 @ 1:48 pm

    I’m in Chicago and own a very large SUV…just saying!

    Reply

  30. Ann Sharp
    May 5, 2015 @ 2:27 pm

    The countertop level should be about four inches lower than your elbow when you’re standing at it — inches for a woman of 5’7″, probably about 40 inches for you. Much taller and your arms will flap like wings when you try to work on it and you won’t have good leverage, much lower and your back will notice because you’ll always be bending.

    Reply

  31. Harry Dan
    May 5, 2015 @ 2:29 pm

    The piano has a beautiful sculptural quality to it. I think you should make it the focal point of the kitchen and leave it as close to the original as you can. Another GFT would fight with this piece, each feeling she deserves to be the most beautiful thing in your life (unaware of what lies in the next room, and all through the house). There must be some Victorian feng shui forces that control the emotional content of a room. You might be creating trouble for yourself if you have too much toomuch. The marble top sounds lovely, and probably would be best left as one smooth uninterrupted surface. Elvis should probably be given complete domain over the floor space under GFT. If nothing else, it will be easier to clean if left open. The foot pedal seems a suitable back piece to a throne from which Elvis can survey the room. Looking forward to seeing the finished room.

    Reply

  32. Patty
    May 5, 2015 @ 3:19 pm

    Looking at you floor plan (the linked post about the huge cabinet wall dream), why can’t you put the GWOAAC (giant wall of awesome antique cabinet) on the stove/fridge wall? Then put the stove where the fridge is now and leave the dishwasher where you show it on the plan. Then move the sink to the right of the dishwasher to be looking out the window. Then to the right of that, build a partial wall (I can’t see what that room to the right is) to put the fridge against and cover the right side of the fridge with a thin wall just to finish the look so the bare side of the fridge isn’t exposed.

    This way you have the GWOAAC AND! the giant piano island.

    Reply

    • Patty
      May 5, 2015 @ 3:28 pm

      I meant put the stove where the SINK is shown on the plan.

      Reply

  33. pedantka
    May 5, 2015 @ 4:01 pm

    For cabinets, I’ve been wondering if you’ve seen these? I don’t know a lot about the manufacturer (except that I like their aesthetic enough to have an ebay alert set for them), but there have been a few kind of enormous wall-size units pop up on eBay recently and they look like they are actually fairly modular, so more likely to be configurable to fit your particular wall size.
    Plus, organising international freight is even MORE FUN than Craigslist retrieval. Trust me on this.

    Reply

  34. Siouxie Q
    May 5, 2015 @ 4:11 pm

    Fancy has met its match. Carry on, VEB. Keep the dispatches from the front lines coming.

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  35. Siouxie Q
    May 5, 2015 @ 4:13 pm

    Also, totally jealous of your 6′ statuesque-ness.

    Reply

  36. Garden, Home and Party
    May 5, 2015 @ 5:00 pm

    This is really going to be amazing. I think you should consider kitchen design once you’ve finished your kitchen. I love what you’re doing with the piano and I know the kitchen is going to be beyond fabulous.
    Great job.
    Karen

    Reply

  37. Sheila
    May 5, 2015 @ 5:58 pm

    I totally agree with everyone who advised against putting the sink into the piano island. A carrara top would be awesome. Have you considered having the edge of the marble mirror the edge detail from the former piano top? I think that would be perfect. Love your blog and look forward to new posts. Keep up the amazing and brilliant work!

    Reply

  38. PJ
    May 5, 2015 @ 6:04 pm

    Take a look at this blog. http://fortheloveofahouse.blogspot.com/2011/01/kitchen.html
    Somewhere in all that she talks about caring for her marble-topped island, what works for her, what she uses, and the fact that patina happens.

    Reply

  39. Chenell
    May 5, 2015 @ 6:11 pm

    I think you’re right. The most obvious solution is usually the best one in the end when “rigging” something, as we say in Miami. I vote for drawers.

    Reply

  40. Christy Keyton
    May 5, 2015 @ 7:16 pm

    I vote with all the “no sink in the island people!” I just have to say I have Carrara marble countertop and I LOVE them! I have had them five years and I would do it all over again. They are gorgeous and not so hard to maintain. Mine are honed, not polished, which makes it easier to hide any rings, scratches, etc. They look so French country!

    Reply

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