Lots of us have dreamed of designing fantasy kitchens with all the bells and whistles. Then our actual budgets deliver a brutal reality check. That's the case with this "before," which belongs to a house that was bought to be fixed up and flipped. The owners couldn't spend a lot of money, so they made up for it with smart shopping and a barrel of elbow grease.
The folks over at Two Thirty-Five Designs initially wanted to replace the tacky cabinetry and even got a reasonable offer when they called for quotes. Then they realized that new cabinet faces, though doable, would add significantly to the cost of the renovation. Their philosophy of flipping is to fix up the houses without pricing them out of reach for the neighborhood.
So they resorted to a cheap but labor-intensive solution: white paint. They also replaced the floors, countertop and back splash, always searching high and low for bargains, like a $200 faucet purchased on sale for $60. To save more money, they stuck with the existing black appliances, which look a hundred times better against a white backdrop.
The result of this makeover is dramatic, and while it may not be a dream kitchen, it shows that a small budget and a willingness to work hard can rescue any room from terminal drabness.
Image: Two Thirty-Five Designs