Last week I showed you a sneak peek of some home renovation projects that FringeMan and I are working on. So today I thought I’d show you our DIY Kitchen Renovation, budget style with recycled cabinets.
Please understand we are not professional home renovators and we are working with no money. I don’t say that flippantly. We are really working with very little. Keep that in mind.
Thankfully recycling is in style.
We also are NOT finished with this project. This is only an update.
When we purchased our home, this was the kitchen. These were the only cabinets and counter space in the room. It doesn’t look terrible in the photo, but that sink had been leaking for many years and the inside of the cabinets were completely rotted. It was gross. You’ll have to trust me on that.
This photo is of the other side of the kitchen. The side I will not be featuring in updated pictures just yet. Again, this photo looks better than the in-person view. Please note, there was three inches of grease covering every surface in the kitchen.
That pantry is now closed to the kitchen and has become part of the bathroom behind the wall. We needed a bigger bathroom if we wanted a shower large enough to water our entire body.
On to the updates!
We did remove the window next to the sink/counter from the first ‘original kitchen’ photo. It’s a shame to lose a window, but the glass was compromised and I had a vision of what I wanted. I would not allow a window to stand between me and my dream. Besides, I have another window in the kitchen. If nothing else, we do not lack windows.
Are you ready?
Are you really ready?
Several months ago, FringeMan saw an add on Craigslist for FREE cabinets. He jumped on them. Excitement budded in my heart and grew as I heard the car pull into the driveway.
I ran outside and my excitement died.
‘ll try not to exaggerate…really, but these were the worst cabinets I’d ever seen. At that moment, I thought we should have kept the rotted, moldy original cabinets. Words like disgusting, horrendous, dilapidated, and puke come to mind and unfortunately for FringeMan, they also came to my mouth. Now I’m accustomed to renovating on a budget and I have imagination, but I was sure these cabinets could not work.
FringeMan and I fought about the cabinets for months. Yes we did.
The more hatred I would spew for the 1970’s dark brown ugliness, the more determined FringeMan would become to make these cabinets work.
And it took work. Believe me!
FringeMan had to build in an extra three cabinets to fit the space and we made all new doors.
The door pulls we bought at a liquidation warehouse for 49 cents a piece. They were a score!
Originally I was going to paint everything white, but after painting my living room tables, I couldn’t resist bringing color to the cabinets. I’m so happy with end result! I really LOVE this color combination.
We also made the butcherblock countertop. That wasn’t as difficult as I first imagined. FringeMan took some good advice from a professional countertop contractor and we were in business.
After much research, I learned that you oil butcherblock countertops and you do not polyurethane them.
They sell bottles of butcherblock oil (mineral oil) at the paint store in town for under $5. Maintenance is about once a month. I can spill (and I have) an entire glass of water on the countertop and it will just pool on the surface. It’s basically waterproof now.
I like that we were able to put the microwave under the counter. It was a last-minute decision that worked really well. FringeMan installed another outlet behind it, so we are cooking with power.
I wish I didn’t have the toaster oven on the counter, but it fits 4 frozen waffles in there at once and the kids can use it, so it must stay. I make any adjustments necessary for easy mornings.
Like I said, we are far from finished, but it’s come a long way. I am happy with the journey.
FringeMan did good, even if he chose ugly cabinets. 😉
Just wondering how much the butcher lock cost?!? Thx.
Stephanie Doud says
a gray back splash would look gorge with that!!!
Mr. and Mrs. Fringe savd me a fortune on my kitchen renovation just up the street from them. The shelf concept covered a long wall giving the place some seriously needed balance. My Vermont slate hearth screamed Dick VanDyke reruns.I thought I’d die painting natural stone but the realtors are raving about the updates! Thank you my Fringe Friends!
Jake Andrews says
You could have spent ten times more and not got any thing like the lovely family kitchen you have now. Made with love shows through every time.
Shelley @ Calypso in the Country says
I love how open it is! Great job!
I’m liking all the white open shelving! Looks surprisingly familiar to me! 😉
Katie@Little Things Bring Smiles says
great job with it, i am truly impressed. the color of the cabinets and the counter tops are stunning! i also love the open shelving–how fun is that?!!
thank you for commenting on my hairstyles post because now it has led me to your blog! going to poke around a bit longer, thanks for some good morning reads and amazing inspiration–like this kitchen, eek, so pretty!!
Love the open cabinets and your dessert dishes with the red ring!
Melissa @ HOUSEography says
Wow! I love the color of your cabinets and the open shelving. Great progress!! Thanks for linking up to my house tour party!!
I love the splash of color, and way to score on hardware. 49 cents?? That’s like a miracle!!
LOVE your blue kitchen cabinets and the open concept. So cool! I wanna see more!
~From a fellow Long Island-er
Frugal Mom says
Wow!! I absolutely love your kitchen. The open shelving is so beautiful and love the color combo too. You and hubby did a fantastic job!!
Sara Sophia says
Did you use maple wood for the counters? Do you LOOOOVE them?
We are remodeling (as you know) and been arguing over to marble or not to marble.
I’ve always been in love with the look of butcher block and would adore it in my kitchen.
I’m desperate and I’d love to find out if this is something we could afford to pursue. Your kitchen is lovely and I agree with Lisa-Jo –I WANT TO EAT IT:P
how did I miss this post?! The picture of your kitchen (done in my fav colour) caught my eye. I love it! You have amazing counter space and the low microwave is a truly inspired idea. Also, I am a big fan of having appliances out on the counter top…I, sadly, am too lazy to get stuff out and use it and then put it away again…ugh, why not just leave it out. So, I support your 4 slice toaster, let it shine in its convenient glory.
So amazing! That was a lot of work but definitely worth it! I love the accent colors in your kitchen. Great job!
I’ve been away for a while but just wanted you to know how much I love your new blog design and your new kitchen:)
I have a bathroom that needs a serious makeover….could I convince the two of you to travel to Dayton:)
Bonnie @ House of Grace says
Great job! I really like your work! It looks like a magazine!!! I can’t wait to read your other posts. I am your newest follower.
Sarah@ Life in the Parsonage says
I ADORE your kitchen!!!!!!!!!!!! *jumping up and down while clapping*
Great transformation! Thanks for linking up for Friday Favorites!
Love the color! Great work! I’m inspired to paint my ugly dark 1970’s cabinets now!
Stephanie Lynn says
This is an amazing transformation! Every detail is simply fabulous! Love the color! Great job! Thanks so much for stopping by and joining the Sunday Showcase Party! I greatly appreciate it. Hope you have a wonderful week. Hope to see you again next Sunday! ~ Stephanie Lynn
RJ @ A Life Designed says
Hopping over from Metamorphasis Monday… your kitchen makeover is looking fabulous! I love the colour you chose for the cabinets, it’s so fresh and vibrant!
WOW!! Awesome makeover!! Can’t believe it’s the same room…
Thanks for linking up to my Flaunt it Friday party, hope to see you next time!
Your kitchen looks awesome!!
I continue to love your renovations. It’s great that you brought color into the kitchen cabinets. You should link up with Turquoise Tuesday over at the singlenester tomorrow.
Wonderful! Would you mind posting how your husband made the butcher block countertop?
You have done a wonderful job on your kitchen. I love the aqua with the butcher block counters and white…it is so cheery.
I LOVE the countertops! Love them.. Must have them for my kitchen.
You’ve done a great job – pat DH on the back for me. The color is so bright and cheerful. Dropping by from BNOTP.
Oh, my goodness! What a difference! I love the look of your new kitchen! What a deal on the ‘free’ cabinets! How lucky you are to have a hubby who can do these things. I like your wooden counter tops too! Oh, I’m in love with those gorgeous shelves! I love these and how you’ve decorated them.
Great job! I’m ready to see what else you do.
Be a sweetie,
Black Eyed Susans Kitchen says
Wow, wow, wow!!! That was quite a challenge! It is gorgeous…can’t wait to see all of it finished…I am sure you feel that even more than I do, but really amazing transformation!
Linda@Coastal Charm says
WOW…looks like somebody has been really busy…great job on this makeover…luv the open cabients!
Tricia Rose says
Your husband did such a good job – I particularly like ENOUGH outlets, and spaced so they are part of the design! The wooden counters too: I can’t work out how everyone has been bamboozled into wanting granite.
I love love love what you have done. I also painted my lower cabinets green and put up open shelving, but I am liking yours even better. It has a bit of a retro vibe that I love (and your living room too)! Awesome job!
I love the colors,open shelves… I love it all!
Stephanie Lynn says
What an amazing transformation! The color, cabinets, shelving…all simply stunning! You must be super excited! Would love to have you stop by The Sunday Showcase Party if you get a chance! What a great find..you guys have done a fantastic job!
OMG I soooo love it!!. I found you from Beneath my heart. That is kinda close to looking at my dream kitchen.
Stephanie Cameron says
I really love the color. I think you would feel more free to do something a little more wild on cabinets that were more or less free…than you would if you bought the cabinets new. Great job! Huge improvement on the original!
Leslie, the Home Maker says
I won’t be “leeping” I will be keeping!
Leslie, the Home Maker says
You have to see my basement cafe’ kitchen!
It is almost the twin of yours!
I love love love yours!
I love that you and your hubby’s marriage survived “the cabinets”.
What you and Mr. Fringe have proven is that paint and love cover a multitude of sins 😉
I’ll be leeping an eye on you and your “new” kitchen!
Here’s my kitchen, if you’re interested:
your kitchen makeover is super! love how your kitchen looks now.. so nice!
For some reason the pictures are not really loading, only a few. But what I can see is awesome, I would love to see more. I think you have done a fabulous job!
I feature interior design posts on my blog, if you would be interested in having this project features on my blog, send me an email.
Me and my husband are redoing our home as money permits to, which has been a very drawn out process, 2 years and counting. Your kitchen looks great so far!
Kristi @ The Thrifty Gypsy says
Hi there, first time here tonight and I love, Love, LOVE your kitchen update!!!!!! You did a FANTASTIC job!!!!! You and your hubby should be patting yourselves on the back!!!
I did something similar but only in a laundry room!! You did an entire kitchen!! Can’t wait to see the other side!!
Dani Joy says
woohooo you two are amazing. Standing O from Spain!! I am in awe. I don´t think I would be so willing to do so much work. Good thing Fringe man seems good at it! 😉 you are gonna put your heart and soul into that house! And it will be home!
Love the result!
Oh my gosh – I am in LUST with your color combo!!! What color is it that you used on your cabinets? Tricia – that is just FANTASTIC!!!
You BOTH did fantastic!!! Go Fringeman!!!
Flower Patch Farmgirl says
Way impressed! WAY!!! Holy smokes. I adore the color of your cabinets. And the red and white touches are brilliant with it! I spied a super cute vintage curtain…I think? I need to see more. Fantastic job, girl!
LOOKIN’ GOOD!!! Can’t wait to see what else you do with the place!
Amy Hadley says
Inspiration!!! You make me think there’s hope for my kitchen, and that I might, just might, be able to conjure up the motivation to become one with my sander. Curious: how do you like the butcher block counters? Any special treatment/caution it requires?
Amy Hadley says
And there’s also the option to slow down, and not get so excited about the pics that you don’t read. So revised question: oiling once a month doesn’t sound bad, but is there anything you don’t love about the wood countertops so far? Or anything you love beyond words?
OK, one more question.
What kind of wood did you use for the counter top?
I like it. It looks really good.
Your vision knows no bounds. You guys did an awesome job. The kitchen looks so happy and inviting!
Wow. Y’all made a silk purse out of a sow’s ear! I love it. And I have to say that if your dishes were not so lovely it wouldn’t work as well.
Seriously. Y’all can work miracles. Maybe you should look into mission work for Habitat for Humanity. I’m only partially kidding. Great stuff! ~Mindy
Sandy@Life Began in a Garden says
Wow, the kitchen looks FANTASTIC!Love the open shelves. I am very impressed, you guys did a great job, can’t wait to see the other side of the room.
wow. i love it. so creative!
The Handyguys says
Looks good! Check out a kitchen I did for my parents last spring if ya want
Elizabeth Channel says
You are giving me hope about my wretched brown cabinets with center brass pulls. I just need to paint them! I love the blue–so cheerful!
Alyson (New England Living) says
I love, love, love it! The color combo is perfect! Kudos to you guys!
It looks great! I love that color–I think the room looks much bigger as well.
Is this the process your Fringeman used?
Or did he score one big piece?
LJ, Yes, that’s the basic process except without all the fancy machines. We didn’t cut the wood down into little strips either, but left them planks. On the countertop man’s instruction, we built the counter in place. The walls are super uneven…like inches in difference from one end to the other, so it was easier to build in place and we got an exact fit. Well, almost exact.
wow. So they are not sealed together with glue side by side? Almost sounds too easy.
Yup. They are also screwed in from the underside…so they stay in place on the cabinets…not that they wouldn’t anyway. I guess we just reinforced it that way.
We need new kitchen too. I should forward this page to my husband. Butcher block sounds like it would fit in our budget.
What a gorgeous space. I have to admit, those before pictures are downright scary! Can’t wait to see the other side of the reveal.
Once again, excellent! You have proven once again that a penny stretches very far!
Hey I love the color!!:) And the butcher block. We are in the process of buying a foreclosure house and have to do alot of remodeling. I love the butcher block. How much does that cost to install? And this may sound silly but can you cut on it? You have great taste.
Sharon, that much countertop cost us under $100. That includes the clamp, glue, oil, wood…everything. Butcherblocks are made for cutting. I haven’t done it yet though. I’ll probably still use a cutting board.
debbie york says
I sure hope the FringeMan was generously rewards for his hard work! It is fantastic. Do you have any idea how badly I want open shelves like that? ‘Course it would mean having to keep things clean, but I just love the look. I declare the turquoise/aqua color from henceforth be known as “Fringe” blue!
You have a real gift. I have no idea how you fit all the things into your schedule.
Praise God! I always wanted to “do” a craft, like finish floors, tile, etc.
Oh and what is that cute little window treatment I am seeing???
The curtain is a vintage table cloth. Once I get the window painted, I’ll show it off.
Can you hear my applause????? Seriously this is an unbelievable transformation! Isn’t it awesome what a little paint can do. I think the aqua is gorgeous but then I’m kinda partial to painted cabinets…LOL! I think it’s fun to decorate on a very low cost or no budget because you have to think outside the box and you guys did! I’m still applauding!!!
What do you think of my new curtains???
Please throw a party/parade in honor of your husband.
He deserves it.
Michelle "Chaos Caretaker" says
OH MY GOODNESS. Kitchen and bathroom renovations are such a huge undertaking. What amazing vision you both had. Thanks for visiting http://www.containchaos.com
Oh my goodness – just gorgeous WOW! Forget eating “in” it – I want to Eat THAT kitchen!! Or at least the cabinets. They remind me of superman icecream. Soo lovely. I am awed by folks who have the skills to make those kind of do-overs come to life! LOVE it!
I like it!! Looks cool! I like the blue – very different and very interesting spot for the microwave. Think you might need a few more outlets though. Can’t be too skimpy with the outlets. 😉 I like how open it looks and LOVE the butcher block counter – love love love it!!! Keep it going!!!! Sure and steady gets the job done!
Fab. u. lous. I love it! Kudos to Fringe Man and that wandering blue paintbrush. Those open shelves are so tres chic.