Making Pretty Spaces

Creating & Planning For a Budget-Friendly Mini Kitchen Makeover!

The kitchen! The heart of the home. In our last home, I waited over 5 years to tackle our kitchen and I vowed not to do that in this home. We spend the majority of our time in this space and even though we aren’t ready to tackle a full renovation (which will involve moving exterior walls)… it’s been at the top of my list to make this space as enjoyable and functional as possible.

Here’s a quick look at the design board…

The first decision I needed to make was whether or not to paint the cabinets. White isn’t terrible so I did go back and forth on this… but in the end, I decided that I am going to paint them in a neutral greige color called “Natural Cream” by Benjamin Moore. This is the tone I’m leaning towards when we fully renovate, so I thought it would be a great opportunity to live with it a while and see if I love it!

Here’s a laundry room via Studio McGee painted in natural cream.

Another paint color I considered was Revere Pewter. I’ve used this color quite a bit over the years and love the warmth it can add. I’ve also seen it lean purple in certain lights and my kitchen is lacking natural light so I decided against it in the end.

Here’s a kitchen from Brett and Kara using Revere Pewter that’s lovely with warm wood tones.

I’m competing with my orange wood tones as you can see below. I won’t replace these floors until we fully renovate this area so I had to take these into consideration when picking a paint color.

The biggest change and reason I wanted to move forward with a quick renovation is this hood. It is very low and does not make for a well functioning cooking space. I can’t count the number of times I’ve bumped my head on this! I will not be sad to see this go…

I had open shelves in my last home and really ended up loving them even more than I thought I would. I will be removing all the upper cabinets including this corner hutch and hopefully replacing it with a simple open hutch that functions better while still letting this room breathe.

In place of tiling, which can be costly and time consuming, my plan is to add a shiplap backsplash and some simple floating shelves. The Identite Collective has a kitchen will all shiplap everywhere and it’s gorgeous!

The goal for this Phase 1 Renovation is to stay on a tight budget of $1,500 and create a beautiful and functional space we want to cook in! I’m including only the building materials and fixtures in that budget and I already own quite a few accessories that will pull the space together in the end.

I’m giving myself 2 weeks… I hope that I can teach a few things along the way and inspire anyone following along to make small changes in their own home! Let’s go!!


  1. Shiplap MDF

2. Black Wall Sconces

3. Pendant Light

4. Floating Shelf Brackets

5. Cook Book

6. Sink Faucet

7. Kitchen Hand Towel

8. Ceramic Jugs

9. Savon Liquide Hand Soap

10. European Brass Pepper Mill

11. Stoneware Pitcher

12. Cabinet Knobs

13. Cabinet Handles

14. Stoneware Berry Bowls

15. Smeg Toaster

16. Loloi Runner

17. Peg & Awl Kitchen Step Stool

Read the Comments +

  1. Kathy Horricks says:

    I can’t wait to follow you on this project! I love your design. How did you decide to use shiplap? I know your taste is not to farmhouse… I struggle with shiplap as well because I also prefer a more modern aesthetic.

  2. Jenna Perez says:

    Hi Jennifer! I love love love the plans! I’m going through the same budget reno myself right now. I think we have the same granite (black galaxy), so I’m excited to see that our design plans are similar so I’m not way off base, haha. Can’t wait to follow along!

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