The question I’ve had the most since showing you our dream kitchen is, “How in the world did you do it?”
I have been so overwhelmed by your kind, kind words and encouragement!! Thank you so, so much. I love reading your comments and getting to know you!
However, I also experienced my first negative comments (even though it was only two, it still stung a little). There were also a lot of questions which made me question myself for how we truly did it. So, today, I’m trying to abate that discussion by sharing EXACTLY how we made it work when we literally had nothing in this kitchen but floors, a door, and windows! (I even had Lowe’s send me a spreadsheet to be sure I had the prices correct! We only came in a tiny bit over $5,000! Whew!)
With a LOT of sweat, TEARS, and lonnnnnngggg days and hours…we made it happen. Seriously, we got the
cheapest most inexpensive parts of this kitchen we could.
For example, we got STOCK UNFINISHED cabinets from Lowe’s and our gracious contractor helped us spray them. It took three coats of white paint (and notice walls and everything are white to try to cut costs) and a final coat to seal them but it saved us a ton of money. You may remember that we got a quote for custom and were heartbroken when we ran out of money, but in the long run, I’m so glad I won’t be paying for this kitchen for 30 years!
Cost $1,909 (cabinets)
We got our appliances on CLEARANCE. When we were searching (and we looked everywhere from a scratch and dent store to appliance centers), we truly found the best deals at Lowe’s. The guy showed us each appliance that was on clearance and one that had even JUST been marked down because of a tiny scratch somewhere (our oven came in around half price because of that!).
Cost $1,606 (oven $748, microwave $359, dishwasher $499)
We literally bought the cheapest countertops money could buy: Standard A Formica Calcutta Marble Laminate. (And we LOVE it. It can’t be messed up…even when I forget I turned the hot glue gun on and it drips on it…)
Cost $613.59 (countertop-Lowe’s installed which could easily be avoided because our contractor helped so much, as did my husband!)
Even though I drooled over huge pendants for months, I couldn’t justify $150 each when these (this link is brushed metal but ours are brushed nickel) were $49 EACH. The white chandelier was also on sale for around $40!
We researched our island a ton, too, and bought two pieces of butcher block from Lumber Liquidators and my dad (and Russ) planed it and stained it for us.
You may remember that the hood was my Christmas present last year!
The sink was $25 on Craigslist and we found the faucet on Amazon for $130!
The refrigerator was FREE and we picked up some magnetic primer (around $30) and used chalkboard paint (already had) and panels (a couple of dollars each) to make it look built in. We also already had the towel bars (that were supposed to be for our bathroom!).
Finally, for the open shelves, we used 2 1x4s and brackets for $7.47 each and leftover white paint!
Bringing the total to $5,347.59!
So a little bit over $5,000 but still on a $5K budget. Remember, we purchased it all at Lowe’s and because we used our Lowe’s credit card, we also got 5% off the total so that helped some.
I truly hope that helps and that even though we were little bit over $5,000, it helps you see that it can be done a reallllyyy tight budget. We truly used what we had or picked items up at thrift stores throughout the year to style it and bring the colors together. Remember, we just finished our second open shelf and I spent around $12 to finish off the look with dishes from our local THRIFT stores!
To have started with nothing because we weren’t able to salvage any of the cabinets left behind (and compared to a custom kitchen with an estimate of only cabinets and countertops that was $13,000), I feel pretty confident that $5,347.59 was a great deal!
What do you think?
You can catch up on the entire kitchen story here: Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, and The Reveal or pin it for later!
Sharing here: Tiny Sidekick, Home Stories A to Z, DIY Show Off, Tatertots and Jello, The Blissful Bee, One Kreiger Chick
I think it’s gorgeous, and absolutely remarkable that you achieved this on such a tiny budget!
Ignore the naysayers and negative comments, its not worth the emotion – what you’ve created here is worthy of happiness all around.
I dream of a kitchen this nice.
Pinned for future reference!
Thank you so much, Marika! I needed that reminder this morning!!! 🙂
I am so sorry that “found” a reason to post a negative comment about your kitchen renovation. You know, I swear some people just go around looking for things and people to push down and critique. On a positive note, cherish the positive comments and feedback since those far outweighed the negative ones. I know the mean posts stung, but your family’s kitchen is absolutely gorgeous! Thank you so much for sharing this project, and all of your sources!
Thank you so much, sweet friend!
I think everything looks beautiful! It’s amazing how awesome formica counter tops can look. I know how hard a kitchen remodel is but I also know the end result is totally worth it. Congrats on your gorgeous new kitchen!
Thank you so so much, Kat! I could NOT believe how good they looked because I was so bummed having to go that route. Now, I couldn’t be happier!
Thank you, again, for stopping by and for your kind words!
I think this kitchen is beautiful. We have done one kitchen on a budget less than $5000 and when we sold the home several years later it was the kitchen that did! We just started designing our present home with cabinets I bought off craigslist for $1300. We got so many as a home in the city was remodeling the whole house and the white cabinets were only 3 years old. This includes the vanities for our bathrooms,den and crafting room. We had found so many things I can hardly wait to start it. DO NOT let the negative effect you as your kitchen is a masterpiece filled with hard work and love. I have viewed so many sites that are getting negative words, delete the mean and embrace the good. May you have many meals and company filled times in this room. Be proud you deserve all the pats on the back you are getting.
Thank you so much, Chris!
HOW STUNNING!!! and what a budget!! You guys did a great job! I’d love to see a close up of that fridge – how creative, I love the chalkboard paint, and hello, FREE!! Well done!
Thank you so so much, Chelsea! Thank for taking the time to comment! 🙂
Oops, Chelsea, here’s the link to the fridge makeover! http://www.restlessarrow.com/2014/01/15/the-refrigerator/
Love this kitchen! Fantastic job! I am looking at that countertop for my kitxhen makeover…would you mind sharing the exact white paint you used on the cabinets? Thanks!
I posted the wrong email before so apologize if you see this twice. Would you mind sharing the cabinet paint color/brand? Love it all! Thanks!
Hi! I’m interested in the white color paint too! Did you ever find out? Thanks!
Hi! Yes! Search “paint colors” and the post should pop up for you!
What an absolutely beautiful kitchen! Thank you for sharing how you did this for 5k. It gives me hope that I too can have a dram kitchen and not have to break the bank. I just found you from Better After. I will check out around your site. But it’s clear to me that reading this post you are a sweet person.
Agree with the others….what’s to be negative about. Remember…it’s them…it’s not YOU.
Have a wonderful day!
Thanks so much for posting the exact details about your countertop. Last year, we did a total kitchen renovation, and I got Ikea wooden countertops (I don’t call them butcherblock, because it’s not end-grain, like real butcherblock) because they were the cheapest, and I thought they would be best, because I could sand away any damage I did. In retrospect, I think that was a big mistake, because I am not the best about keeping my kitchen clean, and I have lots of kids. Seeing your kitchen, I am so sorry I didn’t know it was possible to get laminate without the black edges. Your counters look like REAL marble! I have always wanted marble countertops, but even if I could afford them, I wouldn’t have gotten them because they stain so easily.
If ONLY, if ONLY you had done your kitchen before I did mine, and I had seen your post, and all that other good stuff. Either way, FANTASTIC job. I will keep it in mind, if we ever move again. Most houses in our price range have dogs of kitchens.
I didn’t see the negative comment, but sorry anybody brought you down. You have really accomplished something, here. Lowe’s should put you on their payroll. I really hope they use you in their advertising. If I had seen your kitchen before I embarked on my renovation,I might well hae done the whole thing at Lowe’s, too.
Wow!!!! Julie, what a nice compliment! I am so sorry it did not work out with yours. I am sure they look beautiful! I do love the butcher block! I am also surprised by the laminate marble! My husband had to talk me into it and I am so glad he did!
This is a fantastic renovation! As a Realtor, I see kitchens all day long and I am blown away by your stylish re-do! I am going to keep these photos and link near at hand for clients who are having trouble seeing past a dismal kitchen or who think they really need a big budget to get a really great look.
Thank you so much, Susan!!!!!!!!
I absolutely LOVE this kitchen!!! So inspiring, and thank you for links to sources. I heading to Lowe’s today to look at those stunning counters! (Elle Decor posted your link on FB today!)
Thank you so much, Alexandra! Thank you for letting me know and I am so glad it was helpful to you!!
OMG! Just in time. My daughter whose time and money is limited is trying to get her kitchen updated and we were at our wits end. She has a contractor who is trying to fix the necessary things but I’ve been completely inspired. I will give my daughter and early Christmas present. I’ve already started my remodeling list. Wish me luck! Btw, Absolutely beau-t-ful!!!
Aw, thank you so much, Denyce!!! I hope it is helpful!! It is absolutely possible!
Hi amber! beautiful job! were currently re-doing our kitchen on a very tight budget and convinced on putting in the formica counters in the same calcutta marble that you have. im wondering how the counter tops are holding up and whether you had any trouble with maintenance or staining? also what’s the edge that you picked? its beautiful. thanks so much!
Stopping by from Southern Hospitality blog link – your kitchen is great and who ever dissed your kitchen is beyond cray cray- provides inspiration for my 1980s era kitchen that needs to much help!
Thank you so much for your kind words!
What a brilliant job you did on your kitchen. I followed a link that promised an amazing countertop, and your kitchen delivered. I have often said that formica is the unsung hero of a budget kitchen. Back when I was growing up formica was in practically every modern kitchen in America. Of course its ubiquity eventually detracted from its popularity just as trends have moved from granite to quartz to concrete, etc., today. Everyone used decorative hot plates to protect formica when moving pots from the stove to the counter, usually in the form of decorative wrought-iron. Though I have granite now, I still cherish some old hot plates that were Mom gifts. I think vintage hot plates might be fun for young people to collect. Formica is easy to care for and cheap to replace, making it one of the best ways to brighten a tired kitchen even today. You can change it up every few years! And it looks a thousand times better today than in the 1960s with a zillion different patterns. A wise choice.
Aw, thanks so much for your kind words and for stopping by!! That means the world to me! 🙂
What a beautiful kitchen. I love love love the countertops. I’m going to update my kitchen this year and I am shopping countertops. But jeeze they can be pricey,so this alternative is going to be a must for me and my budget. I love how your kitchen looks. Just beautiful,
Thank you, Julie! Yes, it made such a difference and the laminate looks so similar!