Thanks so much for all your comments on the kitchen. Have I mentioned I love comments? Well, I do! At least the kind that refer to my post - penis enlargement and African prince money transfers need not post. :)
I wanted to answer the questions you posed but I know its rare someone reads the comments, I figured I'd make a proper post of it.
Carrie of Brick City Love asks: How wide is the clearance around the island?
There is about 2 1/2 feet at either side. Here is the schematic if you want to take a look at the general layout. We considered doing the peninsula thing but went with the island instead and it was definitely right choice. If you have a peninsula, you end up a bit more boxed in while cooking. Especially with two people cooking, you need the room. Plus a 7 foot island is more than enough for us.
Katie of five2eight asks: Any chance you can let us know how the counters are holding up?
The choice of soapstone was a hotly debated topic all throughout the planning. I loved it. Mr. L really didn't want anything that could scratch so easily. I tried to sway him with soapstone's primary benefit of being impossible to stain. Finally, he gave in. And I'm happy to say we're both really happy with it. It is "soft" as I fully understood - but much less so than I realized. I thought I'd have to oil it all the time but I actually prefer the gray shade to the rich black. It will get to be black over time anyway so why rush it? We aren't all that careful with it and its held up beautifully. And it is absolutely impossible to stain no matter what we spill. Plus you can put hot pans right on it without a care. Bonus! Soapstone is definitely NOT right for everyone but I really love the worn look to it, the natural veining, etc.. Even Mr. L has come around to liking it.
Marybeth asks: What is going on with the air duct grill? Did you take it down or paint it black?
You can't really see it in the photo, but I heart my duct cover. We got a fancy one with a scroll pattern on it. It came in black and we left it that way. They are available in a few different sizes and finishes. Here is the manufacturer but I'd recommend shopping around for the best prices.
MyLittleHappyPlace asks: Can you tell me where you found the metal stools, and your oh-so-fab soap bottle?
I'm not going to say where I bought the stools because the company was absolutely AWFUL. They lied to me about delivery, overcharged me and were all around bad at what they did. So instead of directing you to where I purchased them, I'd suggest going elsewhere. CSN has the best prices I've found but you have to wait a little longer.
The vintage bottle I found on ebay. Any old bottle works - just add one of the liquor pouring things to the top. I would suggest getting one that is made of fairly thick glass and one with raised lettering on it to make for a better grip. I haven't dropped this once and I'm really quite a klutz.
Jennie G asks: The metal stools - what do you have on the feet to keep your wood floors safe?
I ordered these with rubber feet that have a steel glide on them. That way they move easily enough without ruining the floors. Since these stools are made for industrial use, the uncovered feet would have been a disaster. But most stools that are made for homes already have some soft padding or some other solution with that in mind.
Emily of Name 5 Things asks: Can I ask where you got the pendant lighting?
The pendants are made by Hinkley. Here is a link to one seller but pretty much any online lighting store carries it. Looks like its on clearance at some of the online sites so I suspect they aren't making anymore of them. Here is another situation where shopping around really makes a difference in the total damage.
HEB asks: I love your faucet so, so much! If you have a moment, would you let me know what brand it is?
Thanks HEB! Its a Rohl Country Bridge Faucet with Cross Handles in a Polished Nickel Finish. Its sold at a ton of online sites so once again, shopping around and using coupon codes can really make a difference in the cost.
Hope that is helpful for those who asked. If you have any other questions, feel free to add a comment and I'll add the answers here.
And thanks again for all of your kind words - I really do appreciate them.
Bridie asks: I love the richness of your cabinetry! Would you be willing to share the manufacturer?
We love it too. Its made by Plain & Fancy.
Yancy of Designing Life asks: Did you ever considered adding a library ladder to your kitchen?
While I love the way kitchens with ladders look, it wouldn't work here. The area with the fridge and pantry to the right are considerably deeper than the rest of the cabinetry. A ladder wouldn't be able to glide back and forth. Not to mention we don't have a large enough kitchen to have the base jutting out into the workspace.