my Old Workshop

Budget kitchen makeovers

Installing cabinets, a center island with a bar sink, or replacing all your appliances will give your kitchen a whole new look. But if you’d prefer to start small, here are some ideas to help you spruce up your kitchen without spending a lot.

Add crown molding to the top of your cabinet carcasses. This gives them a more traditional, custom look at minimal cost.

To break up a wall of cupboards, remove a door, paint the inside, and use it to display china or stemware. Or replace one cupboard door with a windowed cupboard door.

Don’t like your cabinets? Give them a facelift with a fresh coat of paint, and add new hardware. (To paint over glossy finishes, you’ll need to roughen the surface with fine sandpaper or steel wool.) Use alkyd paint or a latex formulated for easy cleaning.

Create a dramatic backsplash with glass instead of tile. Order a sheet of ordinary window glass, and paint one side a solid color or a pleasing design. Then cement the glass — paint-side to the wall — and caulk along the edges.

Change your dishwasher color by replacing the front panel.

A single overhead fixture gives blah lighting. Put a dimmer switch on it and add a track light which you can adjust to spotlight key areas. Hide florescent work station fixtures under your cabinets.

Inexpensive panelling topped by a chair rail is a frugal way to add wainscotting and give the room a traditional warmth.