Saturday, July 9, 2016

Kitchen Renovation Under 500.00

There are four words I'm sure my family NEVER thought they'd hear me say:  "I LOVE my kitchen"!
But after 20 years in this house . . . I finally DO!
Thanks to my girls who 'got the ball rolling' by starting the painting of walls and cabinets, I just finished.  It took a few months but less than 500.00 to transform my most hated room into my most loved. There are SO many pictures of this process but I tried to pare it down to the ones that I felt would be most helpful to others considering this process.  Our budget was tight and the three biggest expenses were the paint (I'll explain why later), the flooring (109.00) and the counter top refinishing kit (119.00).  The rest was elbow grease and a few odds and ends.
The yellow dinette set was the inspiration piece for the room.  I purchased it years ago at a thrift store for 100.00 hoping some day I'd have a yellow, retro kitchen to put it in.  
Painting the cupboards was, well, a REAL job.  Here's the paint explanation.  I decided to go with chalk paint because I'd used it on furniture and loved the look.  Research told me it would work.  Well, it did . . . and it didn't.  It was VERY temperamental even though I thoroughly cleaned and even lightly sanded the laminate cupboards.  It took three coats to get good coverage and even after waxing, it was 'spotty' and dull in spots.  SO, I ended up going over them with a semi-gloss white paint I already had and that looked great.  SO, I spent 80.00 for chalk paint when I could have spent 20.00 on a gallon of semi-gloss paint and a quart of Kilz primer.  SO much time wasted too.  But -- lesson learned and in the end it all worked out.  I did not paint the inside of the cupboards either -- just the faces.  I also sprayed the beige stove hood with white paint designed for appliances.
I kept all of the hinges and sprayed them white.  To replace the old handles, I filled one of the holes and then bought red, porcelain knobs to put on the doors.  The drawers (pictured here on the left) presented another problem.  I filled BOTH holes but then had to drill a hole in the center for the knob.  Do you have ANY IDEA just how TOUGH cheap, laminate is???  I tried every drill bit I had and finally went to Home Depot and asked someone there what to use.  He told me to get a bit used to drill through tile -- and it worked!  Still took a bit of effort but it did work.
My tiny kitchen looks SO much bigger now with the pale yellow walls and white cabinets.  As I said, one of the larger expenses was the counter top kit that I told you about in an earlier post.  You can read about it here -- Daich Spreadstone Counter Top kit -- simply AMAZING!
I painted all of the outlet covers with high gloss, red spray paint; made a new little awning-type curtain over the sink; and a matching toaster cover.
 Over the sink is this nasty (well it USED to be nasty), cheapo, fluorescent light fixture.  No money to replace it right now so I just painted the lovely faux-wood grain, metal frame yellow so it blends into the section above the sink.  I got a piece of clear fiberglass cut at the local hardware store then laid a piece of lace on it and sprayed it white.  Remove the lace and voila -- a pretty light fixture.
I decided to do something special with the cupboards over the refrigerator (does ANYONE really use these cupboards??) Well I didn't so I decided to make this a decorative focal point by painting the inside a contrasting color and adding a few vintage pieces I had stored away.  I also drilled a hole in the bottom so I could add some light in there, running the cord down the side of the refrigerator to the outlet.
In the "After" picture you get a glimpse of my new flooring as well as a cabinet I made over and a message center from an old cupboard door.  I'll be posting more information on those in future posts.  Proof positive you CAN make over a room on a budget -- you just have to be willing to put in the time, effort and in my case, have a couple of cute, twin daughters who got the effort started!


  1. Oh my gosh, your kitchen looks absolutely AMAZING!! What a difference paint can make let alone all the other wonderful changes you make. I LOVE your painted cupboards!!! The white makes everything look clean and tidy. We had our cupboards painted a few years back and like you, I love the look! Job well done, I can see why you love your kitchen now!!
    Have a great week!

  2. What an amazing transformation! I love your white cabinets and the clean fresh yellow walls. Good to see the wallpaper border is gone too, lol. Sorry to hear the chalk paint didn't work out for you, but it's all good in the end.

  3. love the after so much more open and homey and the color is awesome
    come see us at

  4. Ooooh, your "new" kitchen looks fabulous! My, what a stunning transformation. Your kitchen was delightful before, but now it's so bright with all the white. And I love the red accents. Beautiful job, my friend.

    Have a glorious week. Hugs to you!

  5. Such a beautiful transformation! Great job ♥

  6. Hi Lauren,
    What a challenging job transform the kitchen.. I love the you got!!
    Have a nice week !

  7. What a beautiful transformation! I love the vintage feel of the kitchen now (those red knobs!) Using the cupboard above the refrigerator as a feature/display cabinet is so smart!

  8. What a great transformation! Thanks for sharing at Vintage Charm! xoKathleen Charm Bracelet Diva {At Home}

  9. You did a great job remodeling your kitchen on a budget. It is amazing what you can do without breaking the bank. I love the idea of using the cabinets above the refrigerator as a focal point. My wife would go crazy over the message center you made from the cabinet doors. I'm glad your daughters decided to get the ball rolling with the remodeling.

  10. What a wonderful renovation, Lauren! The cabinets look so bright and we're certainly worth all the work and expense (sorry that the chalk paint didn't work out!). I love, love your black and white checkerboard floor. How nice that you sweet daughters helped out with the redo of your kitchen. Isn't it so nice to love your kitchen now?! Great job!


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