How We Transformed Our Kitchen For Less Than £950
A new kitchen can be bloody expensive. When we first bought our house, the newly renovated, modern kitchen was one of the reasons we went for it. The kitchen was simple - black and white with new laminate flooring and done the job nicely. With it being our first home, we weren't expecting a masterpiece, but this was a start and we were happy with it. However as we renovated every other room in the house, our kitchen began looking fairly lack lustre in comparison, and I couldn't help but have the bug to completely change that too. Unfortunately, with no money tree in our back garden and having more or less knocked down and rebuilt half of the walls in our house in the last three months, spare cash wasn't exactly flying. Google told me it would cost me around £7000 for a new kitchen - my budget told me otherwise. We spared the money set aside for our garden and managed to completely transform our kitchen on a pretty strict budget, we've made sacrifices and chose wisely to get the most bang for our buck, whilst still completely changing the feel and look of our space.
The main change to our kitchen was our wall tiles: previously, our kitchen space was tiled with a ceramic white tile that done little for the room. There was nothing wrong with them, but they were just a little 'meh', and done nothing to offer me the kitchen I really wanted. I came across UK Feature Walls almost by accident, and I fell in love with Old White Brick. Initially, the plan was to change the worktop, buy some cheap tiles and floor and keep our units in an effort to keep costs down. I hated the worktop, in fact I still do, but the size of our kitchen was just a smidgen to big for the ridiculously cheap pre-cut Ikea Worktops, and every other option was about four times as expensive. Instead of changing the worktop, we decided to go ahead with the wall tiles, in the hope that a feature wall might distract from the less than perfect worktop. I think it worked. Pictures will never do this justice, it's something you have to see in person to truly appreciate but believe me when I tell you, it looks good.
The flooring had to go unfortunately - when your entire house is grey and white, the orange laminate doesn't quite fit in. We decided to invest in flooring that was completely waterproof, which may have set us back slightly more now, but this should mean that when we flood the kitchen (almost inevitable at one point) - we might just be safe. The color choice wasn't so varied because of this, but we were lucky in that it matched quite closely to our worktop and has somehow managed to make that look significantly less tacky...
After the wall tiles - the biggest change has come from something that really didn't cost too much at all. We had a cooker hood that was probably older than I am in our kitchen when we moved in - it done what it needed to, but it was an eyesore and done nothing to open up our kitchen. We bought the cheapest aluminum one available from B&Q and a splash back to match, and the illusion of space it gave was amazing. For such a small change to make it's made an unbelievable difference to our kitchen.
Our dining table came from Wayfair - and whilst I would not recommend the service in the slightest, I don't think I could have been happier with an online purchase. I was terrified to buy online, as the look of the wood was so key in this kitchen that I didn't want to take the chance, but with the likes of the Next dining room tables racking up to £700 or so, it was a risk we took and it paid off. Finished off with some standard Ikea chairs and a vase and it finishes off the otherwise black and white room nicely.
When I decided to update my kitchen, Google told me it would cost me £7000. It could have, but instead, I decided to use what I already have, and make smart choices (such as not replacing a new worktop because I didn't like the color) that could last me through the next few years in this house. We found tiles that made a massive difference, and replaced the worn and wasted cooker hood that drew your eyes for all the wrong reasons. Could it have been done better? Yes. Could it have been done better for less than £900? Still yes, probably. But it was done well enough for us, and that's all that matters. Dare I say we are not finished yet. The windows are startlingly bare, there are plenty of places left for me to shove some plants and it's almost a liberty that I've not yet set the table - but it's a hell of a lot better than it used to be. These were my top tips for transforming a kitchen on a budget, let me know if you have any for transforming other rooms - I only have a full house left to go here...