featuring guest authors; crafting tips and projects; recipes from food editor and sleuthing sidekick Cloris McWerther; and decorating, travel, fashion, health, beauty, and finance tips from the rest of the American Woman editors.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014


For those of you hooked on HGTV and the DIY Network, you probably drool over stainless steel appliances, granite countertops, and solid cherry cabinets while you stare glumly at your old appliances, chipped Formica countertops, and laminate cabinets. Even if you can’t afford the stainless and the granite and the cherry, there are ways to spruce up a tired kitchen for very little money.

For the cost of a can of primer and a can of paint, you can give your cabinets new life. The secret is knowing how to prep the surfaces properly. Home improvement centers offer classes. Invest a few hours in learning how to do the job right before tackling the project at home, and you’ll be ecstatic with the results.

Don’t stop with the cabinets. Consider painting your kitchen table and chairs. Then add new seat cushions. Upholstered kitchen chair seats are simple to reupholster. All you have to do is unscrew the seats from the bottom of the chairs. The fabric is merely stapled in place. Remove the staples, and use the old fabric as a pattern to cut new fabric. Staple on the new fabric, then screw the seats back in place. Ta-da! You’ll have a brand new looking table and chairs. Buy a little extra fabric, and make matching valances and/or curtains for your kitchen windows.

If you can afford to put a few extra dollars into your makeover, consider replacing the handles and drawer pulls on your cabinets and updating the lighting.

Finally, consider tiling your worn Formica countertops. If you have your heart set on granite, but your wallet won’t cooperate, consider granite tiles as an alternative. Once again, you can get how-to’s and advice at your local home center.

photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/kitchendesigner/482490489/">thekitchendesigner.org</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/">cc</a>


Angela Adams said...

What a great looking kitchen...I wished my kitchen looked this good. Thanks for the post.

Sara Welsh said...

I've been renovating my kitchen, and it's been the most fun I've had all year! I just had my kitchen cabinets put in, and now I'm just waiting on the appliances. I've been thinking about getting a new dining table set, but I think your idea to repaint them and give them a new texture is a fantastic idea!

Sara Welsh | http://www.kitchenadviser.net