Before: Going Stale
Dark walls, aging appliances, and a brick backsplash made this kitchen ripe for remodeling.
Room for Improvement
Updates start with a bright paint palette that makes the walls and island pop. To stay on budget, the homeowners replaced existing cabinet doors and repainted. Pendant lights on dimmers vary the brightness of the new kitchen island that anchors the room and provides seating and entertaining space. Hexagon tiles lend the floor a modern look, and the marble tile backsplash glams up the room -- a small splurge that adds a high-end look and value to the makeover.
Freshen the Layout
A big empty space gains storage and a large work surface with the addition of an island.
Two 36-inch stock cabinets form the base of the expensive-looking center island. Trim was added to give it high-end style. A butcher-block-style laminate countertop completes the modern look.
Go bold with bright Valspar colors, as on the island and walls. Save darker accent colors for small accessories -- we used them on a DIY painted vinyl rug.
Before: Reusable Cabinets
An unused desk space and inconvenient cabinets hindered the kitchen’s efficiency. To lower costs, the twin cabinets were reused.
After: Wine Station
Shelves and a wine refrigerator were added between the newly separated tall cabinets. Replacing the old hardware with longer, centered handles and hidden hinges makes the design more symmetrical and modern.
Whites Make Colors Pop
For a cabinet style similar to these, check out Lowe’s Kitchen Classics Arcadia. Then add Euro-hinges, fresh hardware, and bright colors that stand out against the white cabinetry. To make a refrigerator look built-in, frame it with sideboards.
Add color with a custom rug. Cut a piece of sheet vinyl to 3 x 5 feet using a utility knife. Turn the vinyl over and roll or brush latex primer on the back. Then top the primer with white paint. Once dry, mark off stripes with painter’s tape. Paint stripes with leftover wall paint, alternating each color in the room. Finish with a top coat of clear polyurethane. Before using, cut a gripper pad to size and place it under the rug.
Open up the kitchen and preserve storage space by replacing upper cabinets with open shelves. Show off your dishes and artwork on purchased versions or make your own.
Turn a favorite photo into wall art sized to fit your wall space. Have a local office-supply store enlarge the photo and print it on canvas with a 2-inch border. Then frame and hang your artwork. For added color, sand a stool with 120-grit sandpaper. Prime and sand again with 220-grit sandpaper. For a two-toned effect, tape off the leg bottoms and paint the seat and tops of the legs. Then tape and paint the bottoms of the legs another color.