Move or Make Over

In association with Crown Paints

I love to cook and was delighted when my husband treated me to an amazing Aga oven for our 25th wedding anniversary. It is a beautiful pale green and looks great in the kitchen. Now that I have my new oven it has made me reconsider the look of the kitchen and I would love to make a few changes. I have wood flooring, pine cupboards, and a pale green tiled backsplash. Unfortunately, after the expense of the oven there is not a huge amount to fund the makeover. Any suggestions?

A: You are a very lucky woman, what a lovely 25th wedding anniversary gift. With such a great centrepiece I can understand why you want to make over your kitchen and the easiest and most affordable way to do that is with a can of paint.

Your kitchen has some great existing finishes to work with. I would first tackle the cupboards. It can be incredibly expensive to buy a new set, so I would recommend painting them and adding new fixtures. Since your back splash is green and the Aga is a pale green, I suggest painting the cupboards a rich cream, like Ice Cream or Snowdrop from the Crown Paint’s 2009 colour card. The cream will work perfectly with the warm greens you have in the room.

There is a three-step process when painting cupboards. First, you remove the cupboard doors and clean the surface. Then apply a primer. This will allow the top coat to adhere, as well as saving you time and effort as you do not need to sand down the surfaces.

After the primer is dry, apply the top coat with an oil base paint in a satin finish to give a soft sheen on the cupboards. To really spruce them up, use simple stainless steel handles and fixtures. You will find a wide array of these in your local DIY shop at affordable prices. Remember sometimes the simplest changes make the greatest impact.

One great way to breathe some new life into the kitchen is by giving your floorboards a facelift. The first step is to lightly sand them, you can use either a simple hand-held sander or purchase a small electrical sander. You do not need to use a large industrial sander as you are only taking off the first layer. Finish with a water-base varnish like Sadolin Extra Durable Floor Varnish. This varnish will bring out the natural tones of the wood and will look beautiful with the pale greens and creams in your kitchen.

To finish the look, painting the ceiling in a crisp white will add height and give a really clean and polished feel to the room.

Good lighting is really important in a kitchen as you spend so much of your time there. You can find some really inexpensive lighting in many of the DIY stores, so be bold and try something new like a mock chandelier above the kitchen table. It will really add something special to the space.

Check out some of the big department stores for some finishing touches like a new bread bin, spice rack, or kettle — there are some great finds out there. Add some planted herbs to your window; a little nature can make the kitchen really appealing and will pick up the beautiful natural palette you have chosen.

I hope these tips help you with your kitchen makeover on a shoestring budget and remember decorating should always be fun and a creative experience, so have fun with it and let your creative juices flow!


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