See How a Windowless Kitchen Gets a Bright New Look (for $250!)

published Feb 2, 2024
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About this before & after
Home Type
Studio Apartment
Project Type
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Rental Friendly

When Jacqueline Cipolla moved into her sun-drenched, 400-square-foot studio apartment in Boston, she wanted to ensure every inch of the home had personality. One major way she did that? Lots of color. “Because I really wanted to avoid the feeling of an all-white, cold, and stark living space, I made sure to add colorful rugs, green plants, a colorful bedspread, and lots of mirrors to reflect the sunlight,” Jacqueline says.

But one room that was really lacking pizzazz was the kitchen — Jacqueline even described the original space as “so white and ugly.” 

“The kitchen was completely white and had zero color; it was already a super small space with no windows, and I felt like the lack of color made it even worse,” Jacqueline shares. “So, I immediately knew I wanted to add some color and charm to the space as soon as I moved in.” And that’s exactly what she did.

Green paint and a floating shelf liven up the walls.

It didn’t take much to completely reimagine the bland kitchen — and all together it cost less than $250. The biggest change happened on the walls. Jacqueline wanted the space to feel warmer, so she painted over the white walls with a cozy olive-sage shade, Benjamin Moore’s Misted Fern.

But Cipolla’s favorite part of the kitchen is likely the simplest addition: the medium wood floating shelf from Wayfair she uses to display artwork and glassware. “I think it adds the perfect amount of warmth and lets me display whatever I want on it to make the space feel like my own,” she shares.

$13 peel-and-stick floors added retro charm.

Tired tan floors were replaced with retro peel-and-stick floor tiles from Amazon; the patterned tiles and warm green walls make the space feel refreshed and alive. To complete the space, Jacqueline swapped out the existing knobs with new hardware, and added a new woven rug from Amazon

Jacqueline loves how a few simple updates made a “world of a difference” in the space. “The whole project was very easy and affordable, and I’m so happy with how it came out,” she says. If you want to make an impactful difference in your home, you don’t always need a full-scale renovation, whether you’re a renter or not. Jacqueline’s refreshing upgrade proved that a few hardware tweaks and a can of paint can create an entirely new room. 

However, the kitchen in her apartment isn’t the only gorgeous room in the home. If you want to see more of Jacqueline’s space, visit the full home tour on Apartment Therapy

This post originally ran on The Kitchn. See it there: Before & After: A “Colorless, Windowless” Kitchen Gets a Gorgeous Green Makeover — For Just $250