Remodeling a dark, dingy kitchen on a low budget

Our kitchen is facing north and has one small window, hence there was not much light. The knotty pine look was getting on my nerves and so did the ugly, red Formica counter top, including a 70th look linoleum brick floor all worn and the wood work being a very dark brown didn't help to make this kitchen into a cheery place to work in. I love light! Especially during Colorado's long winter month. I remodeled this entire kitchen from top to bottom for less than $900.00
Knotty pine doors are fine for a cabin but after a while the knots can get on your nerves.
Green and white is the main theme now.
What to do when you can't afford a new counter top? Especially if you like stone?
simply! I used stone looking wall paper and 5 coats of latex Polyethurethan and this counter top still looks like new a year later.
Problem area behind the stove. We all know how hard it is to clean the wall behind the stove.
I solved this problem by installing a metal looking vinyl back splash and it cleans like a charm.
To paint over knotty pine is only possible if you use "Kills' to prevent the knots from bleeding through. I didn't want the board look either. Refacing doors costs a lot of money. I did it myself by using "hard board that I glued over the surface of the bottom doors and then painted. I also took all the black hinges and handles off and coated them with silver rustoleum
I didn't bother to do the same treatment with the top cabinets. I simply removed them and have open shelves. Now I don't have to open and shut the cabinet doors putting dishes away. Work wonderfully for me.
The wood work is now painted white and I made a small pantry out of what was once a broom closet and catch area.
My new kitchen pantry.
The ugliest. old floor you can imagine. By the way, I married my husband who lived in this house for 26 years just 3 years ago. It was time to change this floor
To add a little interest I put the new floor tiles in diagonally.
Instead of painting the walls I used wall paper illusions with a faux traventine marble look. To make this washable, it received a coating of artist glaze. Now I can wash the kitchen walls at without damaging the wall paper.
An old glass table with chairs received a new look. I didn't want to buy spray paint to cover up this dark green metal furniture and breath in the fumes. The old paint had peeled in places and it's white primer coat was showing.
A simple solution was to sponge over the old paint using a lighter green and covering the seats of the chairs with new washable, indoor outdoor fabric.
And here it is, all done

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

Frequently asked questions

Have a question about this project?

  1 question
  • Meli Meli on Jul 31, 2016
    How are the countertops and the Rustoleum on the handles holding up?


Join the conversation

2 of 107 comments