The kitchen in our last house was a room that took some time (and happy accidents!) to come together, but by the time we moved, it looked GREAT! I was so sad to leave it behind. Since we were renting the house, we were advised not to paint the oak kitchen cabinets, but we managed to make some inexpensive updates to really taken them far-and-above builder grade.
Many of you have told me you love my kitchen, too (thank you!!), so I thought that I’d share with you 7 ways to bring this look into your own home. (You can read some past posts to get the full details on everything we did to the kitchen over time. Lots and lots of time…)
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Seven Ways to Update Your Kitchen
1. Update Oak Kitchen Cabinets — Without Painting!
Painted kitchen cabinets are very in-style right now, and I love the look of painted cabinets. But, if painting isn’t an option for you, you can still add some oomph (aka “architectural character”) to your cabinets by adding new hardware (I chose black to complement the dark tile grout) and adding crown molding to the top of the cabinets.
2. Keep It Modern
Replacing the outdated (and terrible!) fluorescent light with modern track lighting (from IKEA) helped the room feel so much more homey. Adding a modern industrial pendant light over the sink put the light where we needed it while making the space feel fresh and new. We purchased a black pendant light similar to this one on Amazon — and it’s also available in white, bronze, brushed nickel, red, and green, so you should be able to find one to fit your color scheme. That is the beauty of Amazon!
3. Get the Subway Look
The subway tile backsplash with dark grout really took this custom look to the next level. I’ll walk you through it all with our handy-dandy tutorial!
4. Add Function and Beauty
A trio of glass canisters helps keep oft-needed ingredients close at hand while also looking great on the counter. Try these glass jars with lids, or if you love the canning jar look, these big glass canning jars (with lids!) would look great, too.
5. Fancy It Up
Adding the columns and arch to the kitchen really just completed the custom look and made you doubt that this was ever a typical cookie-cutter home. It took us a loooong time to get there, though! Just look at the before pictures and know that you can do it, too! Get the tutorial for building the columns here — and when they transform your room, please send me a picture!
6. Add a Little Life
Adding a small plant (real or fake) helps the room feel fresh and alive. A fruit bowl helps, too, so long as it is fresh fruit and not the decaying stuff that sometimes shows up…
7. Color Me Happy
I fought the color of the tile in the kitchen until, as a happy accident, I added some orange to the adjoining living room and BAM! Suddenly the orangey tile didn’t feel so out of place anymore. And turquoise, well, turquoise goes with everything… I kept the kitchen mostly neutral, with the white subway tile and oak cabinets, but adding turquoise kitchen accents like my rugs and dishtowels and decor like my fruit bowl, plant pot, and photo frame really helped the simplicity blend into beauty.
Other kitchens who are rocking the wood cabinets:
source unknown, found via tumblr
Get more home inspiration from our other Get This Look posts, such as