Asked on Jul 9, 2012

A blog follower asked for my opinion and I told her I'd share here. Dream kitchen pic is look she's going for.

Antoinette GartonTerra GazelleJudi Doherty


She painted bottom cabinets white but not sure if they are too much with white appliances. Inspiration picture of favorite kitchen attached. Small budget.
Here's the dream kitchen inspiration pic. Any tips on helping my reader get the look - on a very small budget? Thanks Hometalkers!
Opinions? She painted bottom cabinets white but not sure if it's too much with white appliances. See inspiration pic for look she's going for.
Wants to update. See inspiration pic for the look she likes.
See inspiration pic for look she wants. Any suggestions?
18 answers
  • Thistlewood
    on Jul 9, 2012

    I really like the white cabinets. Is she going to paint the upper cabinets, too?

  • She's open to suggestions Thistle. I know you've got lots - so please share!

  • Miriam I
    on Jul 10, 2012

    Maybe she can go for stark contrast and paint the upper cabinets dark chocolate? I really have no business giving design advice, though. I just love Linda's cabinets:

  • Miriam - you know you're styling!

  • Miriam I
    on Jul 10, 2012

    REALLY??!! lol.

  • Designs by BSB
    on Jul 11, 2012

    How small is small (budget)? If she is going after the look in the photo, do not stop painting. Paint not only the upper cabinets, but the soffit/bulkhead above. Have one uniform color going all the way to the ceiling will make the space feel larger, updated and give the feeling that the ceilings are lifted. With a strong color contrast like that on the soffits, your eye stops. What inspires her in the picture? I see white, stainless.. mellow palette, but punch of color/interest with the one feature wall.

  • I agree about painting the cabinets and soffit BeckySue - thanks for the input and I'll be sure to pass it along!

  • R C
    on Jul 22, 2012

    Absolutely not to much! Because of the deeper tones on the backsplash and countertops you will have contrast and more visually interesting space. I suggest you paint the upper cabinets and soffits. You will have a clean long line and the room will feel appear bigger and more open. Can't wait to see the finished product!

  • Sharron W
    on Jan 24, 2013

    I tried to Comment on this last night but HT locked up on me....I guess I am surprised the most that not one person suggested getting rid of the soffits.... I looked through the pictures and did not see any evidence that they contained ductwork, and even if one small section does it is not really that difficult or expensive to have one duct if it is at all possible for her to DIY the soffits, I say Do that will make the whole room seem taller and more expansive. Then I certainly would paint the upper cabinets. To reproduce the light fixture in her dream kitchen, she can purchase a galvanized bucket remove the handle and cut the handle brackets off...spray paint it in side and out with Rustoleum High Heat Paint in white, two coats on the inside to ensure good coverage over the silver galvanizing, Spray the outside with the accent color of her choice....her dream kitchen seems to have used a tangerine or Blood orange color...but her "light" she'll want two nice coats. once all the paint is dry she can drill a hole in the bottom of the pail to accomodate a "pendent" light fixture. Be sure to drill some tiny holes around the bottom rim also to allow the heat to esacpe and not build up in her Light. Also get rid of the "scalloped" wood Valance over the window joining the cupboards, it really dates the look to the 1970's when it was all the rage.... Paint the walls a soft, creamy yellow..... I believe that Rustoleum sells a kit to re-surface the counter tops, there are several postings on HT regarding it's use, and all bragged on it's durability except one that used it in the bathroom where it got wet constantly...I believe they said that Prepping the counters, (sanding and cleaning the dust) was the most critical and time consuming part of the process...The pictures of the kitchen to be "re-worked" do not show the floors, so have no idea what might be needed there...Lastly if there is a local RE-store nearby they should see if they can find a UPscale Stove Vent-a-hood, it will change the entire appearance of the stove and cabinets in that area if they can find or build one that looks as though it were "custom" made out of wainscoting or something to match the cabinets. Be sure to trim out the cabinets and hood vent with crown takes them from Builder grade to "custom" with just that one item.

  • So right @Sharron W - getting rid of the soffits would be a great way to update the kitchen in an instant!

  • Judy
    on Oct 12, 2013

    Paint uppers white, take soffit down to open the space, maybe lay rope lights above the cabinets. Could either leave doors off, painting inside of cabinets or put glass doors on the uppers. I like the backsplash and counter tops. No curtains on windows, maybe 2" wide faux wood blinds.

  • Terra Gazelle
    on Dec 31, 2013

    I think the white is too white...I would paint the top cabinets, but maybe the top cabinets maybe an almond and the bottoms distressed a little, that would separate the cabinets from the appliances.. Get rid of the soffits or at least that brown. Get rid of the print curtains and put up some white country sheers, if she has to have curtains. The brown of the cabinets on the top really clashes with the white..its too big a difference.

  • Peggy
    on Jan 21, 2014

    She should keep going and paint the uppers white. Taking out the soffits and adding crown molding to the upper cabinets would update the kitchen but if that is not in her budget, after looking at the dream kitchen picture she could get a wallpaper to cover the soffits. New wood or laminate wood flooring would be a nice addition also. I think I would paint her kitchen chairs black.

  • Sheryll S
    on Apr 14, 2014

    I also think she should paint the upper cabinets and the soffit white. No interruption for the openness and all. She already has the warm beige stone back splash and then with the white upper cabinets, that stove vent will blend and look just fine. She is on a budget and redoing a stove vent to the ceiling or out the wall in a different spot is a large undertaking to me. If it "ain't" broke, don't fix it. Budget make over is what she said she wanted. Then live with the white soffit and upper cabinets to see how you like just the warm backsplash for some of your color. You have a great kitchen and I certainly would not recommend tearing it up unless it needs to go..... which I don't think yours need anything but some new paint....... then proceed after a couple of weeks if you feel the need.

  • Sheryll S
    on Apr 14, 2014

    Hey Kelly, I just now noticed how old this post is..... so tell us what she did or is doing? Or do you know yet?

  • Judi Doherty
    on Apr 14, 2014

    Kelly please show us what she did with her kitchen...I agree with white upper as well and the floor pattern & tones match the backsplash for that soft tone addition however, for myself I'd white the backsplash as well. But I'm really interested to see her own AFTER pic.

  • Terra Gazelle
    on Apr 15, 2014

    Just if she takes out soffit she needs to be sure that heating or electric is not going through there. Yes..paint all of it white...I like the backsplash she has. Add some interesting cabinets knobs and pulls..Take the curtain down..and paint all the molding white. I like Judy's idea of putting glass in a couple of the cabinets..will really make it more open and airier. Wall paper on the one wall...and she will have a great creative replica of her dream kitchen.

  • Antoinette Garton
    on Apr 16, 2014

    Pick up an old metal kitchen cart, paint it and use it as the eating/island

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