Before and After: A Mini Makeover Brings Some Pep to This Blah 2000s Kitchen

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Before: kitchen with brown cabinets and black counters
Credit: Devyn LaCamera

It isn’t always realistic to fall in love with every room in a new home. Your place might have dreamy, exposed bricks in the living area but a small bathroom, or a magical courtyard but cramped closets. For Devyn LaCamera, it was the kitchen that needed a makeover.

When Devyn purchased her new apartment over the summer, she said she “instantly knew” the kitchen could handle an upgrade. While she liked the dark, standard wood grain of the cabinets, they weren’t complimentary to her overall aesthetic. So, she decided to repaint them and elevate the appliances and hardware to give her kitchen a complete transformation.

Credit: Devyn LaCamera

“I love interior decorating, and am especially drawn to light airy tones in the blue, tan, and white color palette,” Devyn says. She wanted to make the black granite counters “feel less harsh,” so she decided to paint the cabinets a dusty sky blue.

Credit: Devyn LaCamera

First, Devyn replaced the dated appliances with modern stainless steel ones.

Next, with the help of her family, Devyn took all of the cabinet doors off their hinges and brought them to Devyn’s aunt, Michele LaCamera—a pro who refinishes furniture at Vintage Reclaimed. For the next week, Michele painted the faces of the cabinets while Devyn got to work sanding, shellacking, priming and painting in the mornings and on her lunch breaks.

Credit: Devyn LaCamera

Meanwhile, Devyn styled the kitchen with a light, dusty pink rug from West Elm for $400, Brainerd brushed brass hardware from Lowe’s, a handful of cookbooks purchased second-hand on Amazon, and pieces from the rest of her home.

Credit: Devyn LaCamera

“I love how everything turned out,” Devyn says. “The color—Soft Chinchilla from Benjamin Moore—works perfectly in my home and makes my whole apartment feel finished. The gold fixtures bring a modern and girly element that help brighten up the space.”

While she says her kitchen finally feels complete, in the future she might add a new tile backsplash and a matte black sink.

Credit: Devyn LaCamera

Devyn was able to upgrade her kitchen from an early 2000s time capsule to a modern, open area that perfectly fits in with the rest of her home in just a week. “Overall, the transformation was a lot of work but 100 percent worth it,” she says.