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Five DIY Ways To Make A Budget Kitchen *Feel* Expensive

Renovating Jun 17, 2019

Renovation Reveal: The Kitchen

Hand on heart, you don’t have to sell a kidney to have a great, fancy(ish) kitchen. I promise you!

One of the things we set out to do with our renovation was build something that we loved, but on a budget. And let’s be honest, it wasn’t that we wanted to stick to a budget, but we really didn’t have much of a choice. But we still wanted it to be great! So we set out about creating a few great hacks that make the house feel expensive when it isn’t, well not really.

The kitchen is one place hat a few tweaks and updates can make a huge difference. Obviously not renovating at all would have been the cheapest option, but you remember that kitchen, right? Awful! How’s Ben supposed to craft all his delights with no where to store his expansive knife collection?! Needless to say, the kitchen had to go. Here’s how we made it us, and a little bit fancy, but on a budget.

Skip the Cheap Bench top

This doesn’t mean you have to blow the budget completely, I mean, a marble bench top is seriously expensive and often not worth it. But it’s worth understanding what will wear well and look great, and what won’t. My pick? A wooden bench top that ages well. Laminate is obviously the cheapest option, but choose wisely for a matte finish that doesn’t scream basic. A little tip from Ben to you? Do a laminate bench top with a wooden edge. The best of both worlds and has a great feel.

Add Unexpected Lighting

Kitchens can be dull places, made even worse by stock standard lighting in the form of down lights, fluros or boring pendant fittings. Invest in an unexpected touch like a basket or an antique pendant for a space with personality.

Paint those cabinets

Surprise surprise. Geneva recommends painting your cabinets! Don’t hate me because I’m a broken record. But it’s true! The easiest way to add pizzazz (did I just say that?) to a basic cabinet is by painting it a custom colour. Most off the shelf cupboard options only have simple/boring colour ways but painting them a great colour scheme instantly makes a huge difference. See here to learn how.

Mix in antiques

You know what says fancy and well thought out? A mix of textures and materials that gives a space depth and personality. A secondhand island or workbench adds so much personality to a space, and says refined luxury without trying too hard. The one we bought wasn’t exactly a steal but it’s the showstopper of the whole room.

Swap out those knobs

I was thinking of using gold hardware in the kitchen, but Ben took one look at these timber bowl knobs and knew instantly that they would add depth to the room and an added element of surprise. Timber can add an organic feel that makes a space!

Choose Open shelving

Some of you might cringe at the thought of open shelving. But I’m a fan! Obviously you need to have other storage too (like cabinets) where you can store all your ugly, non Pinterest-y junk. But if you can make that happen, open shelving is an ideal addition, to have a space to style and pretty up! All adding luxe points to a basic space.


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