Kitchen: Holy Sh!t Just Pick a Faucet Already


My march towards templating has reached that point where decisions need to be made. Decisions that should/could/would have been made a long time ago if I 1) wasn’t completely difficult or 2) liked what normal people like.

Instead I find myself in a barren wasteland of “most people don’t want that”, “manufacturers won’t make that because there’s no demand,” “hate to say it but you might have to compromise”, and “as my wife tells me, sometimes you just have to get over it”. Thank you, Sales-People-of-Plumbing-Stores-Across-NJ. You have been oh so helpful.

All I want in a facuet is:

  • uncoated, unlacquered, raw brass
  • probably single hole but maybe a 2-hole bridge
  • a sprayer
  • goose neck with classic lines with a utilitarian slant
  • that’s affordable

Is that so much to ask for?

Apparently it is.

I found an affordable, single hole, raw brass faucet that I actually DO like – no sprayer.

Phylrich, Single Hole Bar Faucet

I found a brass faucet with classic, utilitarian lines, and a sprayer. It’s got a clear coat that would have to be stripped off to make it uncoated brass. Annnnd it costs $684 +tax before I even strip it.

Kohler, Essex Faucet (K-8763)

This sexy ass brass bridge faucet by Perrin & Rowe. Uncoated is a special order. 2 month lead time. $1500. HA!


If I could ADD a sprayer to anything or change the color of a polished nickle or oil rubbed bronze faucet to raw uncoated brass, a significant number of options would open up. The internet tells me you can strip the clear coat off of a brass faucet but I don’t know if that goes for faucets with other plated finishes. My guess is no but I have a couple calls out.

I still don’t completely understand why manufactures don’t sell an under the counter diverter add-on so you could add a sprayer to faucets without them. This probably highlights my glaring lack of plumbing knowledge but I still feel like this is a problem that should have been solved already.

I also need to pull the trigger on fun things like under cabinet lighting but I feel like the faucet is more important.

As it relates to moving the mission forward – I need to know what faucet I’m doing so that they can cut the holes in the counter. I hope to go pick out counters this weekend and schedule the templating. A few more things need to happen before they actually come to template but I’m getting close.

The island is in pieces but there is a plan. Plans are good. Action is being taken on said plan. Pieces and materials are being sourced. Most of the angle iron for the base is cut and the castors have been purchased. Now I just need to learn to weld and weld it all together. Minor details.

The side cover panels for the 36″ base cabinet have been fabricated, dry fitted, and prepped for painting.

Never mind that I haven’t actually painted them yet. That will hopefully happen this week. Along with painting the doors & drawer fronts that go with it. And the toe kick drawer. Then everything can get installed.

(except for the upper cabinets that will hang on the wall above it. minor details.)

The blind got drywall.

And corner bead. BAM. JUST LIKE THAT.

Now it “just” needs tape & mud. And sanded. And mudded. And sanded. And mudded. And sanded. You know, my favorite thing ever to do. #sarcasm

I feel like there was more but this is all I took pictures of. And, as we all know, if you don’t document it, it doesn’t count.

So that’s where we’re at this week. Steadily moving towards templating. Obsessing over faucets. Dreading the spackle. Ya know, the usual shiz.

Now go see what Sarah’s up to.

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27 Responses to Kitchen: Holy Sh!t Just Pick a Faucet Already

  1. I stripped the finish off of my brass doorknobs. It was easy, and I am sure that it could be done with a faucet as well. I did it by boiling the knobs and other hardware with baking soda because I did not want to use the stripper chemicals. One thing that you should check is whether or not the sprayer is plastic. A lot of them are, and I don’t know if you would be able to change the finish on that.

    • What finish were on your doorknobs to begin with?

      Stripping will only work if there’s actually brass underneath, so plastic wouldn’t work. But higher quality pieces are usually all brass anyway.

      • The knobs came with the house so I am not sure what the finish was, but they were shiny brass knobs that you see often with the clear finish to keep the brass from tarnishing.

      • mrsben says:

        Better late than never? Ha! The Baking Soda and Water mixture removes the lacquer only. That said, many of the faucets are now only brass plated (no different from the so called stainless steel appliances of late and reason why many are showing rust spots) so as a Jessica mentions; beware. What you might want to do is purchase a small cheap item you know that is brass and another that is just brass plated and experiment with the mentioned solution. -Brenda-

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  3. Carla says:

    Carrie — I am impressed that you are building your cabinets. Do you have a lot of experience? I want to build mine but I actually want an unconventional kitchen where the cabinets look more like pieces of furniture. Real furniture is not deep enough to use for cabinets. It’s starting to really come together.

  4. Kyla says:

    Oh my gosh, YES. I threw my computer down the other night after another fruitless evening of picking a faucet online and wondered “do I just not like what the general public likes? Am I so strange? If I am forced to live in a capitalist, consumerist society then WHY CAN’T I GET WHAT I WANT?” I said that last piece out loud and my husband just laughed at me. But seriously, options with sprayers (which I want too)? Raaather limited. Things that aren’t brushed nickel? Raaather limited. Be proud of being a kitchen outlier!
    And don’t even get me started on choosing a sink – in the end I rescued one from a salvage place so I just didn’t have to compare specs anymore.
    Good luck, you are a rockstar!

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  6. Alex Dent says:

    I have no connection or experience with them but I’ve heard good things about Van Dyke’s Restorers , you might find something there.

  7. Kristen S says:

    Carrie, I came across this today and thought of you. Maybe not as traditional as you’re after, but its raw brass and has a sprayer!

  8. denacho says:

    Best advice i got when remodeling our kitchen was about my faucet. i too obsessed over it for weeks – i found a terribly expensive faucet that i just loved but felt guilty about spending a bunch of money on it. then a friend said this: “you will not only look at it every day, but you will touch it multiple times. the last thing you want to do is regret buying a nice faucet.” so i pulled the trigger and bought this beautiful piece of hardware and have never regretted it. i saved money in other places so i felt this was a worthwhile purchase.

  9. Murray says:

    Have you found a faucet? We’re in a similar dilemma here — looking at some of the same ones as you but having a hard time finding raw brass options. Yikes!

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  11. Sooo…how did you find out about a Perrin & Rowe faucet above in a special order? I too want unlacquered brass and am trying to explore my options…and have screwed up way too many projects on my own to try and strip one myself. Found out last night that the Barber Wilsons one I wanted is sized in European fittings and my plumber said the flanges will all be screwed up in the US and to forget it. Anyway, I like that Perrin & Rowe faucet and the reviews are amazing I have found. To spend more on a faucet than a fridge? Maybe….

    • There are several dealers in the US that sell the Perrin & Rowe faucet. Check your local kitchen & bath design centers or plumbing supply. I think they have a dealer locator on their website too. Any dealer can special order the uncoated for you. It’s a pretty spectacular looking faucet.

      • brookewillmes says:

        Thanks–I already ordered Rohl (Perrin & Rowe) to see–it just doesn’t look like the possibility is even mentioned on the website. We have a local dealer here that my plumber likes (thank goodness…) and maybe, just maybe, I can get a discount. Ha ha ha…I can see how this conversation will go, “I would like to special order this…and want it for 30% less. That’s possible, right?” Your kitchen reno is going swimmingly. Very jealous of where you are in your reno. We have a gutted room right now.

      • It’s taken 2+ years to get here. I don’t know if I remember what life was like with a working kitchen in this house. Haha!

      • littlepurpletoes says:

        Not sure if you would be interested in this but I just confirmed all Waterstone faucets (quite a bit cheaper) can all be ordered in unlacquered polished brass as a custom finish by special order but because it’s a special order, they cannot be returned.

        And thanks, Rohl said all of its faucets can be special ordered in UB.

  12. littlepurpletoes says:

    That should have said “I already emailed Rohl” not “ordered”. Whoops. Too exciting talking about faucets.

  13. Donna says:

    I really love this site. Help me a lot for me choosing the best kitchen faucet. Thanks!

  14. Came across your blog when searching, yet again, for unlaquered brass bridge faucet sprayer. Sister I feel your pain. I hope you got it all figured out!
    Well- I’m off to peruse this blog of yours to find out! Good times ahead!
    -Pia 😝

  15. Christa says:

    which faucet did you wind up getting? If the special order Perrin and Rowe – where did you order it from? One plumbing showroom mentioned this to me but none of the others did. I really want the Barber Wilson but then I have to buy a side spray

    • littlepurpletoes says:

      I bought the Perrin & Rowe because of the side spray. I love the faucet; the side spray sucks. It won’t turn off. Manufacturer considers it to be working fine if it shuts off within 2 min of operating it. Two minutes!

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