Quick and Easy DIY for an Inexpensive Kitchen Makeover

2 Materials

My kitchen had been featured on this blog and a couple of other publications a few times now already, but only because it was the most inexpensive built-in kitchen ever! I bought the kitchen 2nd hand online and then painted it, put on new counter tops and added pretty handles and hey presto! – new kitchen! But now, nearly 5 years later, it had started to look a bit worse for wear and I decided that it was time for a kitchen makeover. I have always been a devout fan of gray in all its hues, but the pale French gray in the kitchen was really getting a bit dull and dated. So here is my easy and inexpensive update, featuring the heroes in the today’s story: deep charcoal and crisp white paint.
A quick note on gray: even though you may think it is, gray is not necessarily a neutral colour. Most grays lean toward blue, red, pink and even yellow! So, when you choose a gray, always test it on a small area in the room first, and then live with it for a while so that you can see if the colour changes in different light and at different times of the day. I chose a deep charcoal gray that is specifically neutral and not leaning toward any other colour. These will usually be marked with an “N” in the code. 
The doors were originally a very light beech laminate. We primed them with a laminate primer and painted them in a water-based emulsion the last time, so this time, no priming was necessary. I love water-based emulsions: it has all the washable and gloss properties of an enamel, without all the mess. These types of paints also usually have a slight sheen to them, making them really easy to clean as well.
A light sanding was all that was needed and then I started to paint the lovely deep charcoal on the lower cabinets, and a crisp white on the upper cabinets. The white required 2 coats with a light sanding in between, while the charcoal needed 3 coats with a bit of sanding between layers.
Replacing kitchen cabinet hardware is another super easy way to quickly update the look of your kitchen. Handles come in standard sizes, but if you want something that is bigger or smaller than what you currently have, just make sure that you fill the old holes before you paint. These pretty little curved handles compliment the look of the kitchen beautifully. You can find similar ones from Knobs.co. 
By sanding between coats, you get a really nice smooth finish that makes it look factory-finished.
To read the complete article please visit my blog http://ow.ly/iflV30aU4fH

Suggested materials:

  • Water based enamel paint
  • Sandpaper

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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

2 questions
  • Sue Laswell
    on Apr 23, 2017

    Cool; very nice!! I like the two colored - upper/bottom cabinets. Does the black paint make fingerprints Stand out? Love this. I may follow your lead. My dreary Old kitchen is in need of updating. 😀😀😀😀
    • Homeology.co.za
      on Apr 24, 2017

      HI Sue, the paint is matte so it doesn't leave any fingerprints. Perfect for a home with 3 lively little boys!

  • Kay Thacker
    on Apr 23, 2017

    What was the grit of the sandpaper. I am in the process and my brush strokes show.

Join the conversation

4 of 26 comments
  • Melody Stern
    on Apr 25, 2017

    Just finished my kitchen,white uppers med gray below! I brushed my paint on,but to get that smooth no brush marks look,try thinning the paint with water! Lightly sand between coates and you may need to do an extra coat or two with the thinner paint,but...no streaks!!
  • Melodi Whitaker
    on Jul 23, 2017

    We picked out a pretty gray paint for the kitchen in our new, first home. Since neither of us had ever owned a home before, we had not ever done much painting. We put the paint on the walls and quickly realized that it looked far more purple than gray, lol 😳We ended up having to buy a different color because we just couldn't live with it. It was called French Gray, but on the wall it was lavender. The Dessert Sand that we bought for the living room and hallways(we were going for a shade of taupe), was a very bright peach on the walls, lolol. We learned the most valuable lesson...ALWAYS buy testers and try them on the wall before purchasing an entire gallon(or four😮)!!
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