The "Low-Cost Built-In Lookalikes" Dining Room Makeover

The "Low-Cost Built-In Lookalikes" Dining Room Makeover

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Janel Laban
Feb 5, 2015

Project by: Katherine
Location: Wichita, KS

When we moved into our almost century-old house five years ago we were in the throes of planning a wedding (in the backyard of that house) and so a lot of things got the quick and dirty treatment. The dining room was one of those things. A coat of paint on the walls, a craigslist table and chairs, and a CB2 light fixture and call it good!

This past fall, my father-in-law gave us a massive amount of books and along with them, several shelves. Two of them were tall and narrow (plus!) but made out of cheap, particle board (minus!).

I decided to spruce up our dining space by turning these cheap shelves into "built ins" on either side of the windows that would make the space warmer and more inviting.


It was a really low-cost makeover (under $300 for the whole room) that centered around the built-ins and eventually snowballed to include new crown molding and paint. We got our dining room table for free from a bookstore that was going out of business and re-finished it from a golden oak color to this deep cherry. The new, padded chairs are all from thrift stores so we got slipcovers in a neutral color to make them all match. The wall paint color is Olympic's Stormy Weather, the door paint color is Olympic's Black Magic.


We re-purposed a left over piece of conduit (spray painted Oil Rubbed Bronze) to make the curtain rod and added some curtains that skimmed the floor to insulate sound and cover up where the built-ins slightly overlap the windows.

We couldn't be happier with the way this low-cost makeover really took the dining room to the next level. This room is 1,000 times more comfortable and inviting!

Read more about the project on Katherine's blog: Keep Smiling

Thanks, Katherine!

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