A Budget Kitchen Makeover With Sparkle! (Part 1)

It has been SO long since I’ve posted, what with graduations, family vacations, prepping my home to put on the market, etc., that I thought I’d better make this post a really BIG one!  Are you ready for a lot of pictures?

I’m SO happy to finally share with you my Budget Kitchen Makeover!  It’s been a long time in the making and I only just finished up the final details of the transformation.  It’s funny, and kind of sad, that it took finding out that we’re going to move to motivate me to finally wrap things up.  Is there anyone else out there who moves mountains to accomplish big projects, but leaves the little details undone?  It’s a character defect of some sort, I’m sure!

Kitchen beforeThis is my kitchen before we began tearing things up.  We had already added the stainless steel fridge and dishwasher when the old black ones gave up the ghost.  You can only imagine how much darker those two black boxes made this room feel.

1-Kitchen demo 001-001As I’ve said before, my house isn’t large and my kitchen island is my only crafting space.  Mr. OTN was bound and determined to provide me with a larger (and prettier) counter space to work on.  Not to mention that he might just get a few more gourmet type meals out of me if my kitchen was a more appealing place to cook!

kitchen beforeIt is hard to see here, but the counter top was black tile, with white trim and the island was only about two feet deep with a raised bar.  This main living space in my home includes the kitchen, a dining area, a small sitting area behind the kitchen counter and the living room.

Kitchen before makeoverThe raised bar was higher then in the above picture and only served to separate it from the living room, making the kitchen feel darker,  and limiting counter space.  It also blocked some of the view from the kitchen out toward the lake, especially for a shorter gal like me.

2-Kitchen demo 014We planned and shopped and planned some more to make this the most budget friendly kitchen makeover we possibly could.  I’ll be sharing my secrets for shopping for appliances, how to get high-end granite slab for much less than what you see on the display room floors, painting your own cabinets, customizing an existing kitchen island, creating your own mirror and tile back splash online, and other tips for saving tons of money on a kitchen makeover.  All that for another post though.  Today, I will just show you some after pics.

1-Kitchen After 005This is it!  Can you believe it?  You might want to scroll up again to that first picture and look at that dark and dingy old kitchen before going any further.  That’s what I keep doing and I’m the one writing this post!

7-Kitchen After 018So much lighter and brighter.  So much more open to the rest of the living area.  So much more crafting . . . er . . . cooking space with the lowered bar and extended length of the island.

1-Kitchen After 006The original cabinets were solid and in good condition so I decided to paint over them with Annie Sloan chalk paint in Old White.  I love that this paint doesn’t require stripping, sanding or (in most cases) priming.

13-Kitchen after remodel 050I chose to distress my cabinets some because I happen to like the look, Farmhouse Glam girl that I am.  The added bonus to that is that, over time, you won’t notice the normal wear and tear as much.   I then added a bit of greyish color wash in the cabinet insets to add an additional aged appearance.

14-Kitchen after remodel 053I sealed my cabinets with soft wax and buffed them for a nice glow.

11-Kitchen after remodel 040When the morning sun comes in through the windows the light color cabinets reflect light all around the room!

08-Kitchen after remodel 030Next is my kitchen island which was nothing but a square box with drawers and cupboards.

4-Kitchen Island and Garlic Broccolini 008I added legs and corbels and painted it with Annie Sloan’s Graphite to ground the room.

09-Kitchen after remodel 032More distressing (and staining of the distressed areas)

3-Kitchen Island and Garlic Broccolini 006More buffing and waxing

1-Kitchen Island and Garlic Broccolini 003I was really glad that I invested in an electric buffer for this job.

12-Kitchen after remodel 043Next was my granite slab.  I wanted it to be white like marble.  I love marble but it doesn’t react well to acidic foods.  My master bath has marble and I’ve experienced the heart sinking feeling of seeing what vinegar and water cleaner does when sprayed on its surface (I’m still trying to figure out how to fix that mistake, short of hiring someone to come in and professionally buff out the spotty areas and reseal the marble).

2-Kitchen Remodel After (gems in granite) 003This piece (Glacier White) has “sparkles” in it when the light shines just right (I HEART sparkles) and small red garnets imbedded within the metamorphosed granitic rock.

1-Kitchen Remodel After (gems in granite) 001I’m constantly moving things people place on top of the sparkles so they aren’t hidden from my view!

6-Kitchen After 013I also wanted a piece of granite that had “waves”, to give it a feeling of movement.

23-Kitchen after remodel 087You’ll have to come back for the post that shows you how to find beautiful granite for less than you’d pay for granite tile!

01-Kitchen after remodel 002On to my back splash.   More sparkle, of course, from polished marble tiles.

4-Kitchen After 009I wasn’t as worried about using marble on the back splash because it isn’t heavily exposed to acidic food, especially since I do all of my chopping on the island.

5-Kitchen After 011The light from the windows shines in and reflects back off these small mosaic tiles, which I also happened to find at a great price!

02-Kitchen after remodel 004On to the custom back splash for my stove area.  I found a site online where you can choose your own tiles in any color and material and they will mount your design on netting.  This makes it easy to adhere in the area where you want a special pop of color.  Since I love blues and greens I mixed and matched mirrored and glass tiles in various shades of the same colors that I see when I look outside my windows.

2-Kitchen After 006

15-Kitchen after remodel 063To finish things off we added a new oil rubbed bronze faucet to match the new cabinet hardware,

24-Kitchen after remodel 080and some new mercury glass light fixtures for more sparkle.

20-Kitchen after remodel 078The new blue green paint color makes my creamy white cabinets and the new crown moulding “pop”.

04-Kitchen after remodel 012I placed a few new items placed atop the cabinets,

18-Kitchen after remodel 074

while some of the old things remain.

03-Kitchen after remodel 008We bought this mirror at an antique store when we first purchased our home.  I prefer a sink with a window over it but this is the next best thing as I can look at the lake behind me while I’m washing my dishes.

1-Kitchen After 009I added a little coffee station to this counter,

3-Kitchen After 007and my collection of special oils and vinegar in the corner area near the stove.

10-Kitchen after remodel 037The new double oven and gas range combo is great and I’ll be sharing tips with you soon on getting the best price possible for appliances.  The tile floor was in the kitchen when we purchased our home ten years ago and is still in good shape.  I like it, as it reminds me of a floor that might be found in a French Country Farmhouse.  So . . . no change needed here . . . except maybe a little bleaching of the grout!  That could be a future post as well as it certainly will need to be done before we put our home on the market!

2-Kitchen After 007Now for a few final pictures with the beautiful roses our Freedom Session Facilitators and Participants presented us with at their graduation ceremony last night.

4-Kitchen After 016How beautiful these creamy white flowers look in my kitchen.

5-Kitchen After 017My friends know the things that please me.

6-Kitchen After 019This is the view looking out toward my little sitting area with the lake beyond.

1-Kitchen After 001It is sort of strange that now that my kitchen is just the way I always wanted it, we have to turn around and sell our home.  As I look online at homes in the Greenville area I haven’t seen a single kitchen that looks like this, the one that was my dream kitchen for so long before we actually made it a reality.

Perhaps we’ll buy a home that needs a kitchen makeover.  If we do you better believe that I’ll be using the same materials again . . .  if I can find them.  Or perhaps we’ll find a home with a kitchen that is already updated and I’ll fall in love with something new . . . ???

I can’t know what the future holds but I CAN walk into the future without fear, knowing that my paths are prepared before me, by the One who cares about every single detail of my life . . . even kitchens!


My Signature-001PART 2 and PART 3 of this kitchen makeover can be seen HERE and HERE.

PART 4, where I’ll share my shopping secrets, is yet to come!

I’ve been known to link up to the following great parties!!!


  1. says

    Wow! LOL, I did have to go back up and then I read that sentence where you say we should do that! : ) This is an amazing transformation. I couldn’t believe it was a kitchen in the same house! Just gorgeous and I love all the changes you made. I love your backsplash tile. I need something like that for our kitchen as we are in a condo with no window in the kitchen. Right now there is no backsplash and it really needs something reflective. Marble wouldn’t be good for us though because I do get sauce that splashes up every so often. Great job!

  2. says

    I’m in love with your kitchen, too, dear friend!!!
    Those pendant lights are just the icing on the cake above your gorgeous granite island!!!
    Love the backsplash and the custom tiles above the range!!!
    The color choices for the cabinets, island, walls. . .exquisite!!!
    I think you should have fresh roses everyday on your island!!!
    It won’t be easy finding something like this when you move, but you’ll have a great reference file at hand!
    Looking forward to seeing more information on this post in the future.

  3. says

    It’s wonderful! I have very similar granite on the sink side of my kitchen, and I love it. Congratulations to your daughter.

  4. says

    I absolutely LOVE your new kitchen! I love everything about it and I really am excited about the mirror, that is one gorgeous piece!

    Gigi @ Old World Patina

  5. says

    Fantastic! I would love it if you joined and contribute your awesome posts at my link party at City of Creative Dreams, starts on Fridays 😀 Hope to see you there at City of Creative Dreams Link Party.

  6. says

    Patti, I’m in love with your gorgeous kitchen! That mirror, …. genius! The finishes you chose are perfect.
    The copper pieces are so lovely! Amazing job, sorry you have to leave it, but you can have the pleasure of doing it all over again. I know you are up to the challenge!

  7. says


    I am so sorry you have to sell your house with that beautiful kitchen, but I know you will create an amazing kitchen in your next house.

  8. says

    This is a stunningly beautiful transformation!! You have re-inspired me! I’ve been itching to update our boring blonde oak kitchen cabinets, but after painting some reclaimed cabinets white for the laundry room, I got disheartened with the finished look and have been hemming and hawing about starting in the kitchen. Chalk paint never occurred to me!! I’ll be checking back for your in-depth posts – I LOVE your backsplash!! Glad I found you at Savvy Southern Style!

  9. says

    What an amazing makeover! I love everything! I can’t thank you enough for all the inspiration. Now maybe I can get motivated to start on my kitchen!

  10. says

    Patti you and your hubs knocked it out of the park! As soon as I got to the first pic I went WOW! It looks amazing and I know you must just love it in there now. Thanx so much for linking your awesome new kitchen to THT!

  11. says

    Wow, when I first say the “after” photo, I thought you were going to say that was your “inspiration” photo! It is so professional and beautiful, I thought it was from a magazine or Houzz.com or something like that! It’s really gorgeous. I can’t wait for your post on painting the cabinets b/c I want to paint mine. Best wishes with the move, I hope you’ll find something equally as lovely. Thank you for joining the History & Home link party. -Dawn @ We Call It Junkin.com

  12. says

    Patti, your kitchen is amazing! I love the sparkles you added and that paint color really sets it all off. I also love the way you did the top of your cabinets. I’m working on that project right now. Gorgeous!!

  13. says

    WOW! What an amazing transformation – I love every thing you did in it … Now you have the wheels in my head turning and my hubby is going to most perplexed when I tell him what I have in mind. Beautiful…..Cathy

  14. says

    It is just stunning Patty! I’m a little sad for you that you have to leave it, but I know you are up to the challenge of creating one equally as beautiful in your new home. Thank you for sharing at What We Accomplished Wednesdays. Have a great weekend!
    Blessings, Deborah

  15. says

    You did a beautiful job. Much lighter and brighter! We push through big home projects and leave the details unfinished. Sometimes I just forget about them, sometimes its hard to work up the motivation to get all of the tools out just to work on something small. I’m looking forward to seeing the follow up posts on this remodel!

  16. says

    You and your hubs are SO cute!! I LOVE your kitchen transformation and it gives me hope that we can make ours as appealing (on our tiny budget)…hoping to get to that project within the next year…Thanks for linking up to the Link it or Lump it Party :)

  17. says

    Wow! I’m here visiting from the Nifty Thrifty Things Link Up. You did an amazing job! I love the bright, clean result. My favorites, though, are hands-down your thoughtful breadboard vignette, and of course the hilarious “Hey, Girl…” Cracking up! Well done. :)

  18. Sharon @ Elizabeth & Co. says

    Seriously? Is that really the same kitchen? Wow Patti, what an amazing transformation! It looks so big and light and bright now! And very sophisticated! You must never want to leave the kitchen!

  19. says

    Absolutely stunning kitchen….You two did a wonderful job!!! I hope your loving the granite slab as much as me (we have the same granite in my kitchen)

  20. says

    I’m popping in from Tweak it Tuesday to tell you how gorgeous your kitchen looks!!!! When I picked out the finishes for our kitchen, I had a photo of a kitchen with walls the color of yours. We painted the walls a rust color, but when I’m ready for a change (soon) I’m still loving the bluish green hue you’ve chosen. I could move right into your lovely kitchen!

  21. Beverley Leonie says

    My eyes almost popped out of my head. I will tell you what I love most about your kitchen……… EVERYTHING!!!!!!

  22. says

    Love, love, love what you did with your kitchen! It turned out beautiful! Saw a sneak-peak on Marty’s blog and I just had to take a look! Great job!

  23. says

    Wow, what a transformation Patti! Love how bright and cheery it all turned out! I must say, you two look like you were having so much fun with the demolition. lol! Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  24. says

    Oh, Patti. Wow, wow, wow, and WOW!! I’m so happy for you–and so proud of you! I can hardly even believe that this is the same space. I’m sure that’s what everyone says, but honestly, what a change! It’ll be fun to see all your budget tips as you lay out all the details. You must be loving this new space!!

  25. says

    Thank you for sharing this post at City of Creative Dream’s City of Links last Friday! I loved this post so much that I chose it to be featured for this weeks party. :) Go grab a button you deserve it!

  26. says

    Looks great! The new look is a big transformation from the before pictures. There is way more light shining through your kitchen now.

  27. says

    I love, love, love how this turned out Patti! I usually prefer darker cabinets but this post really has me changing my mind! I love the paint color and little sparkle you added in. I’ll be featuring this at the next Frugal Crafty Home Blog Hop! So glad you shared this with us!

  28. says

    Patti…your “new” kitchen is extraordinary!! I feel so badly that you won’t be able to enjoy it much longer…it’s so beautiful. Though at the same time, I’m excited for you upcoming new adventure!

    Glad you mentioned investing in a buffer, because before you wrote that I thought “oh! my arms!!!” 😉
    The new mercury glass pendants are perfect. There’s so much I love, I could go on and on…

    Come on over tonight to Project Inspire{d} tonight….you are my pick for the party!!

    Best wishes for An Extraordinary Day!!

  29. says

    I’ve just pinned this-what an incredible transformation! You guys are amazing!

    Thanks for joining the Say G’Day Saturday linky party. Hope you can join us again this weekend.

    Best wishes,
    Natasha in Oz

  30. says

    It’s so light and airy with a french feel! I loved this. I especially like that mirror you found and also love your kitchen range. You did a wonderful job at creating this beautiful kitchen:)

  31. says

    I LOVE your kitchen! That is exactly the look I am after for our remodel! Thanks for listing paint color and granite (my builder is talking me out of marble). I just love the idea of SPARKLE! I found you through Imparting Grace’s link up.

  32. Toni Floyd says

    I absolutely LOVE everything in your new kitchen! I am waiting with baited breath for your update on buying granite and appliances at budget prices!! I’m so ready to get started!

  33. Geri Colvin says

    I LOVE your Kitcen makeover top notch! The only thing That I question are your chairs at island/bar. They are sort of dark and your eyes go to them and stop. I think white same shade as cupboards would be a great choice or even gray as a possible second choice.

  34. says

    It’s absolutely spectacular – truly magazine worthy !!!
    LOVE the backsplash – and that mirror over the sink – ( and the corbels and the island the appliances and the granite and and and lol )
    What a transformation ♥

  35. says

    You have created a beautiful bright kitchen. However, I must say I would have been proud to have had your first kitchen. I loved the warm wood looks as well. Just call me old fashion.

  36. Lauren says

    Hi Patti,
    Fantastic job with your remodel! Would you mind sharing where you purchased your white marble back splash? It is my favorite part!

    Thank you!

  37. says

    I really love your kitchen and I am in the process of redoing mine. We plan on painting the cabinets so looking forward to that post. What I’m really interested in is the appliances…I have to buy those very soon and have a tight budget.


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