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mush_01

Kitchen help - what can we do to make it look better?

Mush 01
7 years ago
We've just brought a new house and I've posted a picture of the kitchen.

We don't have the money to get a new kitchen at the moment so we need to work with what we've got, but we don't really like the wood surround and not overly keen on the cupboards. The work tops are a light grey.

I don't think the colours go and I really want to do something to make it look better but have no idea what!

Any advice or suggested are much appreciated

Comments (65)

  • Lauren
    7 years ago
    I'd definitely paint out the ugly orangey/brown surrounds in white, add a large jute rug (either plain or patterned) as someone further up suggested - this would look lovely paired with a wood or wood effect floor underneath but I understand you may not wish to fork out for this. Go with a warm linen or hessian blind to match the colours in the rug - either roman or roller. Finally I'd paint out the cupboard doors with white on top then a contrasting but complimentary colour on the bottom to inject some personality into the room. I've attached a crude photoshop job to give you the gist of what this could look like.
  • wobblylane
    7 years ago
    The cabinets are very dated. Use ANNIE SLOAN CHALK PAINT to paint them a beautiful shade of light gray. The color: Paris Grey. This paint sticks to ant surface and there's no priming, sanding neccessary. It will freshen up your entire kitchen. Then, add a nice fabric valance to the window with a pop of color.
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  • whinefest
    7 years ago
    An immediate fix for the units is to change all the door handles.to a new style (yes, it still works") :)

    As there’s a predominance of stainless steel, I’d suggest you follow that theme for the new, elongated door handles, as you can’t currently avoid it. A quick search on the internet would throw up many great and relatively inexpensive (not ‘trade only’) sources for new handles of every size you could desire.

    As a hint … for the single knob drawers where one hole exists in the middle of the drawer, use that original hole for one part of the new handle, and as the drawer set I see is to the left of your cooker, then set the other side of an new elongated handle to the right of each drawer front in a horizonal, and the drawers will be much easier to use, when standing in front of the cooker. (You also have no holes to try to fill in/camouflage in the drawer fronts.)

    When using the one existing hole on your cupboard units, it’s up to you whether you prefer new, longer handles situated on the horizontal plane, or the vertical.

    To give the room width, depth and height, I’d certainly paint out the current wood (laminate?) surrounds with exactly the same colour as the units currently are. This would lighten and brighten the room immediately, and make the units far less dominant. If the ceiling isn’t already painted white, then making it white would go with the tiles which you can’t currently change, and the white ceiling would again lighten and brighten the room and give the illusion of expanding the area.

    I can’t see the colour of the door(s) on the kitchen side, but if they’re a wood colour, why not continue the same colour on the flooring?

    The flooring could be changed to a wood effect vinyl. I’d use a deeper, warmer, softer tone of wood effect, to give the illusion of more width in the kitchen floor area.

    I’d most certainly, as mentioned, put up either a solid ‘pelmet’ above the window, done with a cheerful, bright print, including the unit cream tones and some varied greens in the material ~ or, do a curtain type pelmet (using the same tones in the material), placing the curtain rail very near to the actual ceiling height, and the curtain pelmet material of a length to hide the Venetian blinds I think I see (?), and this will give the windows an additional illusion of height.

    If possible, replace the worktops with a rich, deep, expensive looking green toned colour, and definitely a thicker worktop than you currently have inherited.

    Alternatively, but I haven’t recently researched this recently, I believe it is possible to paint existing worktops now, to avoid the disruption of possibly cracking tiles, and also re-siting your built in sink and hob et cetera.

    To inject greenery into the kitchen, why not buy, and paint (non-toxic paint!) the exteriors of, inexpensive, neat, ‘strawberry planters’. You know the ones which looks as though they have ‘pockets’?

    If you’re keen on herbs then plant them up with some, and/or you could really bring the outdoors inside and plant the strawberry planters with your favoured, or seasonal plants (even strawberries where the sunlight reaches!) ~ and for non-food plants, also add some variegated trailing ivy(s).

    I’d suggest one planter to each of the corners visible in the photo, making sure the height of the planters either fits under the upper unit height, or at least doesnn’t impede the opening of unit doors. Perhaps one planter also at the end of long runs of worktop.

    The planters and pelmet would be the focal points along with anything else of colour which you’d want to introduce to the kitchen walls, (as opposed to the stainless steel/cold grey being dominant), and bring in warmth and vibrancy, to what should appear to be a considerably larger, lighter, brighter and warmer kitchen area than you currently have, all without painting the current units or involving a great deal of expense.

    Have fun!
  • Mush 01
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    Thank you for all your great suggestions! I'm thinking we will paint the surrounds a light grey and keep the doors cream for now and change the handles to metal elongated handles.

    Not overly keen on curtains in the kitchen but we'll look for a new blind of some sort, maybe with some nice colour and a pattern included to brighten things up a bit. Our kettle and toaster is black and our new washing machine is a graphite colour, with a silver American style fridge.

    Thank you so much for the photoshopped pic, that really helps me visualise your suggestions. Do you know how I can use a similar approach to try out what these thoughts will look like?

    Thanks Houzzers, you're all great!
  • helen3107
    7 years ago
    I would paint the cupboards and the wood surround a grey colour or even an eggshell blue sort of colour. Then I'd get some white blinds to match the white tiles. Put a few hearts around the place, a nice chalk board and maybe a small vintagey kitchen table and chair could go in there?
  • Mush 01
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    Love this suggestion Helen... The rest of the house doesn't have a vintage feel though - do you think this will be ok?

    I'm wondering if painting it all grey will look too much with the silver fridge, light grey work tops and graphite washing machine (when it's in)?
  • Scott Hedger
    7 years ago
    If I were you get to some showrooms, have a look at some doors, slab doors are popular! Smaller rooms usually go for glossy finishes, though Matt finishes are just as nice! Personal preference really
    And integrated appliances are good for that flush finish!
    That mainly will give you an idea whether your looking at a more contemporary or traditional shaker door look!
  • pollyannagal
    7 years ago
    Regarding handles, as much as I love long handles (I'm using them in my current renovation project) I don't think they would suit your doors. They are very modern and look great on flat doors but not with the more traditional mouldings of your doors. If you want to update them I would use black or graphite knobs.
  • Matthew Decorator
    7 years ago
    Additional information is you can paint the tiles and even the work top but I find the work top painting to uneasy.
    I've painted plenty of tiles and once they're done they look better than brand new tiles. Bright white gloss, completely reflective, clean, no dirty grout etc
    Tile paint or zinnser
  • metalpetal
    7 years ago
    If you have a Smartphone try downloading a free app from Crown paints called MyRoomPainter. It will give an idea on how the kitchen would look using different colours. Its easier than Photoshopping.
  • Tony Arnold
    7 years ago
    I would suggest you keep to one colour for the doors and surrounds and even tiles to create a more modern look and to enlarge the kitchen. If you opt to paint I would use Farrow and Ball as they are extremely good paints and have great coverage. use a roller and buy the small ones-you will need a brush for the beveling on the doors. Buy synthetic brushes. They are far better than real 'hair'.
    For door handles I recently bought some extremely simple small modern ones in brush aluminium-approx 80 pence each. Discreet and classy finish and design. I would employ slatted blind-you can buy online cheaply and it will help give modernity and privacy. If you do a bad paint job they will look worse, so practice on the back of a door perhaps first. Use an acrylic undercoat-not the Farrow and Ball as its expensive and its an undercaoat. Good luck.
  • Tony Arnold
    7 years ago
    Here is photo of handle. ( aluminium brushed are better)
  • Sam Hill
    7 years ago
    It's the Orange coloured wood. It somehow needs change.
  • Tony Arnold
    7 years ago
    We are doing so. We are renovating the whole house.
  • Mush 01
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    Thanks for all your great suggestions, they've made me think and now I think I have a plan!

    We're going to paint the cupboards and the wood surround in Farrow & Ball Clunch - is the estate eggshell best for this? Do I need to sand and prime with this paint?

    We're then going to change the White tiles between the cupboards to sage green brick tiles.

    We're going to replace the worktops with an oak effect worktop and we're already planning to re floor the whole downstairs, including the kitchen to a washed oak effect floor, which will be slightly darker than the new worktop.

    We'll then paint the rest of the kitchen walls in farrow and ball corn forth, or perhaps a sage green colour to match the tiles.

    Would introducing a third colour, a light grey on the rest of the walls be too much and just stick with painting the walls sage to match?
  • Mush 01
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    Forgot to mention we'll also change the handles to metal square handles
  • wobblylane
    7 years ago
    The color palette for the kitchen needs to mirror what you have going on in the rest of the house, or at least other rooms visible to kitchen.
    The gray was just a suggestion based on what pic you gave us.
    Sage is an "earthy" color depicting foliage , etc. light gray is a cool color that depicts stones, pebbles, Ect. Light gray, in my opinion, works best in large doses (ie the cabinets) when it's paired with a pop of bright color such as lime green, bright yellow, orange, cobalt blue. I'm not a fan of light gray and the softness of sage. There's no pop of color in that..no 'wow' factor.
    The only reason you don't need priming or sanding with ANNIE Sloan paint is that it's unique to that line of paint. You will need primer and sanding with conventional paint.
    I hope I have been helpful. Good luck with your project!
  • iolosdad
    7 years ago
    If you want to keep costs down and a quick make over I'd undercoat and paint the wood in the same colour as the doors, you can take the door to a paint shop to get it colour matched. Painting all those doors drawers with hinges trims and runners is a lot of work to get a tidy job. Also to keep costs down ikea have some good wide roller blinds that are easy to fit. and get a colourful rug thats easy to keep clean? come back and show what you've achieved ?
  • Mush 01
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    I'll definitely come back and show photos of what we do. I like the idea of sage tiles white Ivory doors, it's very country and traditional which is in line with the style of these doors. The rest of the house isn't going to necessarily have a country feel to it, but we will have wood floor, oak furniture in the living room etc so not overtly modern feel either.

    We were thinking of having blue/turquoise/duck egg blue accents in the living room (which has a door to the kitchen) as our sofa is light, our curtains are sand colour and our furniture will be oak. I wasn't thinking of having the kitchen use the same accents - do you guys think this will be a problem if the colours are different??

    The living room also has a door to the dining room and would have the same blue colour accents in there, it would just be the kitchen that i was hoping to go off course with the same colour and go with the sage?
  • iolosdad
    7 years ago
    We fell in love with our new kitchen so much we contacted Howdens to find out what the wall colour was in the brochure so we could buy it, it's farrow and ball light blue a colour i would never have chosen to get a sample pot of as it looks really grey and boring but it's a very interesting colour as it looks very different in day light bright sun and different lighting sometimes grey sometimes green or even blue ish...
    Inside the chimney breast where the range is we have raspberry coloured glass on three sides, photos are not mine but gives you the idea ?
  • iolosdad
    7 years ago
    RAL colour 3027 (splashback from google) we also colour matched the door colour to use in the adjoining room. look forward to seeing your updates
  • headers13
    7 years ago
    I would paint the orange wood in a dark grey & the cream units in a paler grey - Annie Sloan does great paints for wood. Never think cream/grey go but white/grey/grey tones work. Buy a white roller blind from Ikea. Change the handles on the cupboard doors. Then lift with a few key items in an aqua colour maybe & rows of herbs on windows sill.
  • Mush 01
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    So do you guys not think sage tiles to replace the ugly white tiles between top and bottom cupboards?
  • Tony Arnold
    7 years ago
    I fitted these door knobs which are simple, stylish and knob.approx. 90p each from www.larkandlarks.co.uk. They call them the 'Aries' .
  • iolosdad
    7 years ago
    Paint or replace I say and if sage is your colour go for it
  • Tony Arnold
    7 years ago
    Highly advise Farrow and Ball as coverage is v good and finish also. Non oil based and quick drying. Roll it or if you have the adventurous spirit and facility, spray them. If the paint finish is poor you will have wasted your time.
  • christa1990
    7 years ago
    So some people prefer Annie Sloan and others F&B, does F&B need wood to be primed etc or just paint directly on to the wood?
  • Tony Arnold
    7 years ago
    It depends what you are doing but most painting requires a primer. For bare wood always use a primer. You don't need their primer-just get some from Wickes or Travis Perkins (trade). The local place here for FB is happy to advise me the same (he doesn't own the franchise though, just works in it).
    It is always best to Prime, Undercoat and Final coat.
  • Tony Arnold
    7 years ago
    If this is for you kitchen doors then I would suggest that you lightly rub down with fine abrasive to allow paint to adhere. Try FB on it's own since you have a paint base already presumably. (ie it is not bare wood). The trouble with some undercoats in acrylic they tend to dry too quickly so you will end up with a poor finish. It is probably better therefore to give 2 coats of FB paint-use interior eggshell. Great coverage and drying times and no odor.
  • pollyannagal
    7 years ago
    As Tony says, you would need to prime & undercoat the frames of the cupboards (use a good quality multi-purpose primer) as they don't have a painted finish and will need to sand down any sealed finish they have to provide a key for the paint or it just won't stick and you will waste a lot of time and money! The doors would also need rubbing down and a good wash (use sugar soap solution) to remove any grease residues from previous use of the kitchen. It's really boring but thorough preparation is essential for a good result. If you want a good finish you will need to remove the doors and drawers before trying to paint them and it will probably take a lot longer than you expect!

    Annie Sloan chalk paints can go on without a primer but you should still wash the doors and frames to remove any grease etc. These paints have a very matt chalky finish and should be finished with a coat of wax which you rub on with a soft cloth to seal the surface or you will find that any splashes, greasy fingers etc will mark the paint.

    If you aren't familiar with using these paints I suggest you spend a bit of time on the net looking at how to's for both products, both from the manufacturers and from general websites. There are lots of helpful YouTube videos that will give you a good idea of what is needed. I also suggest getting some samples and trying a few test areas on some scraps of wood to get an idea of how the paints feel to work with and the finished results as they are very different. From my own perspective, our kitchen cabinets are painted with FB eggshell and have lasted really well. I like chalk paint for other furniture projects such as side tables, bookcases etc.
  • mrsmcee74
    7 years ago
    Huge difference, well done.
  • pollyannagal
    7 years ago

    That looks great! Thanks for sharing.

  • iolosdad
    7 years ago
    Looks great ! Thanks for posting updates I wish more people would.
  • Catherine Hounslow
    7 years ago

    I would paint the wood in a darkish grey that provide a bit of contrast .

  • iolosdad
    7 years ago

    Bit late I think they've finished ?

  • maria galvano
    6 years ago
    looks great now well done tiles and tops totally transformed this kitchen
  • maria galvano
    6 years ago
    I would change the sink to a ceramic one they are inexpensive would just lift the kitchen and they look expensive not a fan of your present one sorry but work you have done so far very subtle but looks soooo much better already :)
  • PRO
    Amber Jeavons Ltd
    6 years ago

    Hello mush_01,

    Yes you made a significant change.. One thing though... the handles could be removed for a sleeker look... fill and paint holes.. easily done and instead put touch/open mechanism and nickel cup handles for the drawers..

    The other idea for suggestion is that possibly you could paint the kick plate and side panel to match the cupboard doors and the same above for overhead cupboards and the side panels.. So it's not just the doors that are a colour that doesn't match the cabinets they are situated on, they then view as a whole.. : ))


  • PRO
    Pipe dreams plumbing company
    6 years ago
    The units and orange skirting are number 1 priority. You should be able to paint them. Worktops are really quite cheap to buy and fit yourself. I would consider retiling the backs as well. Metro tiles are cheap and stylish. You can pick them up for about £10 a box 1 metre square. Probably need 3 or 4 then adhesive and grout looking at about £100 in total.
  • Helena Dixon
    6 years ago
    Looks great, love the tiles too, well done!
  • PRO
    Ensign Accessories
    6 years ago

    You have done extremely well, and completely changed the mood of the kitchen. Well done.

  • kazza_hayward
    6 years ago

    Am I the only person who dislikes rugs in kitchens and feel that grey has been done to death now? It looks great mush_01 and I love your sage tiles although I would definitely still paint the orange wood.

  • Cakelady
    6 years ago
    Wow what a difference, looks fantastic!
  • whiteleghorn
    6 years ago

    I am really impressed too. Clever you!

  • saki
    6 years ago
    I think you should add bright colour like red or yellow to the storage unite to make it stand out
  • PRO
    Kranston-Kitchens
    6 years ago
    Depending on how far you budget goes, I would look at adding traditional cornice and pelmet and replacing the plinth with a similar oyster colour. End panels for wall units could also be replaced / added. Some chessboard style tilling in 3 colours would also bring out the walls. It's hard to tell but is the oak surround also on the wall units? I haven't checked your location but this is something we can help with
  • Coco Nuts
    5 years ago

    Paint all the wood and doors the same neutral colour, update the handles and definitely lower the extractor fan. You'll need an extension piece or new longer stainless steel chimney part. Add some pelmet below the cupboards and install under cupboard lighting, can be done without requiring an electrician. Add colour with accessories and contrast with a black blind.

  • jenny_mullin64
    5 years ago
    I'd get back to basics; leave the cupboards cream and paint the rest white - take a step back and then see what colours you'd like to add? You could also accessorise; change the handles/door knobs. Sometimes it's just the simple things added that can alter the whole look.
  • PRO
    Create Perfect
    5 years ago
    This post was over 2 years ago!!!
    I think they are sorted... look further up in the thread to see the outcome and amazing transformation.
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