Ideas for Old-Fashioned Kitchen?

Good Questions

Q: I just signed a lease on a lovely apartment in a great location, with plenty of light and hardwood floors. If we don't look at this kitchen it's basically a dream apartment.

The picture shows how the previous tenant arranged the kitchen — my initial thoughts are to remove the microwave off the counter, nix the spice rack, replace it with art, and place some wire shelving on top of the cabinets. Those are only minor fixes though — any ideas to completely change the cramped, old fashioned vibe of the place? Painting the cabinets/removing the doors is not an option, but painting the walls is. Thanks!

Sent by Maja

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(Image credits: Maja)