Just think what you could do with $100,000, $50,000 or even $10,000 to re-do your kitchen. It would be phenomenal! But what if you don’t have or want to spend that kind of money on your home? A little bit of money and some elbow grease can go a long way! Here are a few things you could do to update your kitchen, mostly without spending a lot of money.
1. Paint. Whether you add color to the walls and/or color to the cabinets, you can make a BIG change with paint color and if you do it yourself, it’s very affordable. Depending on the size of your kitchen, it could cost as little as one gallon of paint ($25) ish. If you’re a new do-it-yourselfer, start with painting the walls, it’s much easier. If you’re really ready for change, I love to see the ceiling in the kitchen painted anything but white. Typically, there’s not much wall space in a kitchen, so bring that color up onto the ceiling. I think it’s fantastic!
Painting outdated cabinets can really liven up the kitchen; however, it takes A LOT of elbow grease. Here’s a brief overview of what you’ll need to do to the cabinets: wash them thoroughly, remove the knobs, remove the doors, drawers and hardware. (Tip: number the doors and drawers so you can easily put them back in the same place for the best fit). You can use a brush, roller or sprayer to get the job done. Be sure to consult your local paint company to find out what tool would be best for you and to find out which kind of paint will work best on your cabinets. Keep in mind that wash-ability is key. Be sure to get a book or look on-line for step-by-step details on how to do it right.
2. Knobs. Whether you paint or not, sometimes just changing out the knobs (or adding knobs) can update a kitchen.
3. Counter-tops. Unless you are really handy, countertops can be difficult to install. Laminate is very affordable and you can find ready made sections at the big box stores. Tile is affordable to very expensive, depending on what you select and whether or not you install it yourself or hire someone. Then there’s a solid surface: natural stones like granite, engineered stone, Corian, Stainless Steel, Zinc, Tile, Concrete … there are many choices. Yes, a new counter-top can change the look of your home, but depending on what material you select, and whether or not you do or hire out the installation – it can be fairly affordable to very expensive!
4. Kitchen Curtains. Most kitchens have a small kitchen window. Just changing out the curtains can give your kitchen a fresh new look and you can find affordable kitchen curtains in several places: Lowe’s, Bed, Bath and Beyond, JC Penney …. This is a great way to bring more color(s) into the kitchen. Some people prefer to start here. Select the kitchen curtains you like and from there you can select the paint colors, and other colors that you can use to accessorize your kitchen.
5. Accessories. Yes, kitchens need accessories and I’m not talking about appliances on the counter-top! It’s okay to keep the appliances you use on a daily bases on the counter-top, but if at all possible, please store the rest out of site. Add rugs, towels, pottery, plants, bowl of fruit and even wall art (if you have any walls to hang things on). If you have glass cabinet doors, place things in your colors in those cabinets and arrange them so they are decorative.
6. Chalkboard paint. This can be a lot of fun, add personality and be very functional too. Choose a wall, a section of a wall, a pantry door or even a cabinet door and paint it with chalkboard paint. It can be a great way to leave notes and messages.
7. Tablecloths. If you have an eat-in kitchen, try changing out your tablecloth or place mats AT LEAST once a month. You’ll probably enjoy this more than anyone else. A table cloth can change a room in a matter of seconds.
8. Chair Covers or Pads. Nowadays you can buy chair covers or pads at a reasonable price. A chair cover and give a whole new look and feel without having to buy new furniture.
I hope some of these ideas have sparked an idea in you. Let us know what you’ve done to update your kitchen. And if you’re open to it, let us know what you spent.