Kitchen: Budget Reno

We’re back to visit the antique craftsman style home we’ve been touring. Little bit by little bit, we’ve seen some really clever and super cute transformations in this young couple’s first home, and the subject of today’s post is no exception to that.

Kitchen Budget Reno

When they bought this antique house, the kitchen, unfortunately had been re-done in the 1980’s. In which, the previous owners had completely stripped down and removed every original surface… appliances, floor, trim and window from the original home gone, and replaced with that famous, generic looking 80’s style. before

To give you a mental picture of the before: The cabinets were all white laminate… except for that cobalt blue ‘racing’ stripe edge on the face of the counters and at the top of cabinets by the ceiling. With the white tile backsplash and the cobalt blue floor tile… get the picture? It was all white, sterile white, no hardware, and had only cobalt blue for an accent, quite harsh and cold, with no interest.

Without the budget to replace the cabinets or appliances or counters, creativity was going to have to transform this kitchen! potrack before and after

Though this wall mounted pot rack they designed and implemented on a wall to where previously there were weird shallow cabinets, is the main feature of this kitchen, the other changes they’ve made to this room, on a very limited budget to do so, has likewise made an incredible difference to the space. open cabinet

It’s amazing how much just simply removing some cabinet doors and little paint can make a huge difference! door removed and backs painted

By picking and choosing which upper cabinets could lose their doors, they did just that, took off the doors, filled the holes, primed and painted.

And by using a really good bonding primer, (here’s the link for that bonding primer) they even primed and painted the plastic laminate cobalt blue edging on the counter tops and the top of the cabinets. Amazing the difference that did.

Then to bring some interest to the space, they chose their accent to be those open cabinets. They painted the back of them the same grey color that they painted the beadboard behind the pot rack. bowls

Then with some great displaying ability even every day dishes look great and it has made a huge change to the kitchen.

Next time I’ll show you more details of this room, including the window treatments, and accessories…

Update!… By special request, here is a better photo collage showing the before and after of the ‘racing stripes’: painted blue stripe

Shopping Link:

Here are more kitchen projects and ideas:

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Reader Interactions


  1. Carol says

    This is an amazing and beautiful transformation! I love the way you have displayed your dishes in the open cabinets — very pretty!

  2. maytagnmom says

    Really nice redo on the 80s kitchen. I don’t see a photo showing the repainted (with bonding primer used) cobalt blue strip though and the “after” appearance. Can you show us that photo too?

    Thanks for sharing with us, and it’s always great to see creative minds at work. 🙂

    Visiting from Furniture Feature Friday@ Miss Mustard Seed’s linky party
    Suz @MaytagNMom
    NW Illinois
    ~~My Current Project At The Party~~

  3. distresseddonna says

    Thank you for the tour. I picked up some great ideas for my kitchen. Our neighborhood was built in the 1940’s and 1950’s. There is an ongoing discussion between neighbors who rip out everything for a clean large room look. And those of us (me, included) who wish to retain some of the mid-century modern look.

  4. CJ Foss says

    Love what you can accomplish with white! Craftsman will never go out of style because it combines function with naturally beautiful elements. Thanks for sharing. Happy Spring. ~CJ

  5. Christine says

    Oh WOW!!! Feel free to come over and update my 1960’s kitchen!! Ughh.. I need to update it.. ASAP.. however everything is painted with oil paint.. and then latex on top… Ughhh it’s keep pealing.. AWFUL

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