#AD This post on how to ‘Update A Kitchen’ is collaborative.
Are you looking to update a kitchen on a budget?
Many of us have started home improvement projects that we had been putting off over lockdown.
The kitchen is the heart of the home, the most attractive to future buyers and the project most likely to increase property value. But it is also the most expensive room in your house to update which can also be a time-consuming task. Decide on what style you want by finding inspiration on Pinterest, Houzz, Instagram etc. Just remember your kitchen needs to be a practical space especially if you have children!
Before You start, clean like there is no tomorrow. Donate or bin anything you don’t need or use anymore.
Stowaway your countertop appliances (except for the kettle) and clear away the rest of your decor. Clearing the clutter will help your countertops feel larger and will make your kitchen feel more open.
Whether you are a renter or homeowner, here are 6 suggestions for updating a kitchen that are low cost do it yourself solutions that transform your room.
Tip: Don’t forget to prep meals in advance for when your kitchen is out of action.
#Paint the walls.
Paint is one of the simplest, cheapest ways to update your kitchen. Choose well, a wipeable satin or semigloss latex paint for your walls. These two types of paint finishes are easier to scrub, which is important in a greasy room like the kitchen. White is always a fresh and clean choice.
Prepare the room thoroughly – use hot water and dish soap to scrub down wall’s and frog tape off tiles, worktops and cover the floor! As with any room, start painting your kitchen from the ceiling down, so you avoid any paint drips.
If your cabinets are looking a little drab, remember paint is not just limited to the walls. Remove the doors first then clean them with a sugar soap, then fill any cracks with filler before sanding the area and wiping it down. If a surface has already been painted and the paint is in good, clean condition, it likely will not need priming. Unpainted drywall, bare wood, and painted surfaces in poor condition should be primed.
Dark blue and grey are popular colours. Why not create variation by painting the lower and upper cabinets contrasting shades?
If you use the correct type such as a gloss latex, you do not need to apply any sort of varnish sealer. Tighten and WD40 all the hinges and consider changing the handles for an extra spruce up. Match the metal to your pendant lights and tap for a cohesive, well thought out look.
You could also consider keeping your present cupboard bases and buy made to measure door replacements online from sites like Hotdoors to give your kitchen a new lease of life without the traditional costs of a complete refit.
#Add a new tap.
A dull, tarnished tap can make a kitchen look out of date. We bought our modern pull hose tap from Wayfair for £60 so it was an inexpensive way to give the sink a facelift. Sink bowls can hide outdated and scratched sinks, if you have a white Belfast sink that is marked grab a magic sponge! Also, for dull metal plugs leave them in a bowl of coke overnight, they will come up super shiny.
#Consider the countertops.
Worktops can make or break a kitchen – clean countertops suggest a clean, fresh house.
Lakeland Worktop Wonder creates a water and fingerprint repelling film, meaning that splashes bead making them easier to clean up. Solid wood surfaces may be able to be sanded and waxed. If just a small area of the kitchen worktop has a scuff or crack invest in a worktop saver and hide it. Using sponges of various sizes and different coloured paints, you can achieve a faux-stone look. Using vinyl contact paper is a great way to cheaply transform your countertops – especially if you’re a renter and can’t make any permanent changes. Laminate countertops aesthetically mirror the natural beauty of granite and wood, but for a fraction of the cost.
If you are going to buy new, shop around. HC Supplies have one of the most extensive ranges of robust kitchen worktops in the UK. Consider picking Quartz worktops over Granite as it does not need the sealing or polishing.
#Add a backsplash or retile to your walls.
In our kitchen we replaced grubby magnolia tiles with new grey Metro tiles from B&Q which at £9.60 for a pack of 40 is really reasonable. Tiles are a great way to personalise a kitchen to reflect your style and bring together the room.
If you haven’t got the money to replace tiles, then in our hall we used self-adhesive tiles covers. I was nervous about the look but was really impressed at how authentic they look. Practically, I find the edges do tend to easily peel so would not recommend their placement on an area that needs a lot of wiping or is essentially exposed to heat.
Another cheap kitchen hack I have picked up is to whiten up yellowing pointing with minimal hassle using a grout pen.
#Disguise an ugly floor.
Does the floor make you frown? Easy to clean Linoleum tiles and easy lay adhesive Vinyl flooring make stone tiles an unnecessary expense and are taking over Laminate flooring as my favourite budget friendly floor choice. If your budget doesn’t stretch this far grab a pot of the Pink Stuff to buff up floors and consider disguising it with a large, hardwearing Jute rug.
#Choose new lighting fixtures.
Light makes a room inviting, highlights detail, brings warmth and can create a feature in your kitchen. Although you want your space to look stylish, it’s important to ensure that your kitchen lighting is practical, too. Most kitchen will have LED spotlights but if you have the opportunity and the square footage, consider 2 or 3 hanging pendants over your table or kitchen island. Why not try experimenting with different lighting heights? Take a tip from the pro stylists and choose a group of three, or five. Personally, I love industrial style copper piping and vintage lightbulb combos.
Discoloured, old whitegoods and stoves are last on our list because they are expensive options. Not planning on replacing the dishwasher? You can cover an ugly fridge using contact paper or your oven with a stainless-steel finish. Create focal points with your jars, cutting boards, or cookbooks that draw the eyes away from any outdated appliances. Other decor such as wall art, greenery and towels will help you create a cohesive feel in your kitchen.
Have you transformed your kitchen recently and have any DIY tips or hacks? We would love to hear them!