Our Budget Kitchen Makeover: Before + After

The kitchen is easily the busiest room in most homes – and that proved to be even more true after 2020. Finishing our budget kitchen makeover made our quarantine life a little easier, and a whole lot more aesthetically pleasing. We decided pretty early on that we would prefer to start small, and I’m glad we did. Read on to learn about how we dramatically changed our kitchen, all for under 10K!

THE BEFORE:

The home came with traditional style, dark cherry wood cabinetry, ornate corbels, and busy granite counters. I wanted to brighten up the space while keeping the sophisticated vibe that I love, without doing a full gut job. We wanted to keep the high quality cabinetry and granite countertops that were in great shape. I don’t believe in being wasteful with materials unless it is really necessary, and in our case – it wasn’t!

Luckily for us, keeping the cabinets and countertops also meant we saved a ton of money. The entire makeover was less than 10K! Read on for details about our budget kitchen makeover, including cost, paint colors, and links to the backsplash, lighting, and accessories.

But first here are some visuals of the BEFORE:

THE AFTER:

The first and most dramatic change we made was painting the cabinets. The new taupe color actually made me appreciate the countertops more. The color we used was ‘Shitake’ by Sherwin Williams. We painted the walls around the cabinets the window trim, and the baseboards in Sherwin Williams ‘Aesthetic White’ for contrast.

COST BREAKDOWN

The cost of painting your cabinets completely depends on the number of doors you have – so if you have a smaller kitchen or less cabinets, the cost will be lower. I got three quotes for painting – ranging from $3,500-20,000. Kitchen Design firms usually provide their design expertise and suggestions in addition to the painting so they are on the higher end. If we were going to do any major design changes I would have gone this route.

We chose a small painting company on the lower end of the scale, because we already had our chosen paint colors. We did end up paying more than we expected because we decided to paint the adjacent eat-in area and family room doors and windows to coordinate with our new pretty kitchen.

In total we spent $5,000 for painting. While budget was a factor, I really focused on choosing a painter with a great reputation and references. I also made sure the cabinets would be spray painted at a factory for the professionally painted cabinet look, as well as to keep the mess out of the house.

Next we removed the existing metal backsplash, and opted for a bright white beveled subway tile. I chose this style because it is classic and timeless. I wanted to really brighten up the space so we decided to remove the two cabinets that were flanking the window, and tile all the way to the ceiling.

The tile was approximately $100, and installation was $600.

We added floating shelves for both function and aesthetics. I was surprised how much use we get out of these shelves – they aren’t just pretty! I know some people think floating shelves are just a trend, but I love them – so even if they go out of style, I won’t care!

Last but definitely not least, we changed all of the light fixtures. I wanted to have something substantial over the huge island, and I wanted an aged brass/vintage look. I found these large globe pendant lights, some may opt for led pendant lights, and fell in love. For the dining nook, I chose a fluted-style pendant that coordinates with the colors and tones. For the kitchen sink area, I added a small clear globe pendant and some vintage style sconces over the shelves.

Overall I’m really happy with the makeover. I love having coffee in here every morning before the kids wake up, and enjoying our new space. Now on to the next project!

PRODUCTS & PAINT COLORS

Paint Colors: Cabinets: Sherwin Williams ‘Shitake’ Walls and Trim: Sherwin Williams ‘Aesthetic White’ Inside of windows and backyard door: Sherwin WIlliams ‘Iron ore’

Backsplash Tile

Pendant Lights Over Island

Counter Stools

Floating Shelves

Pendant Light in dining nook (sold out Anthropologie but here is a similar style under $200!)

Sconce lighting above floating shelves

Pendant light above sink

Dining Room Chairs

Kitchen Rugs

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