Before & After: A Dated $80 Craigslist Bar Cart Turns into a Gorgeous Kitchen Island

updated Dec 28, 2020
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Before: Dark cherry bar cart
Credit: Jill Mansfield

A kitchen redo is one of the larger, more involved renovations you can take on at home — and also one of the most expensive. If you’re looking to save money, it’s important to get creative wherever possible. Take this smart redo from Jill Mansfield, who was on the hunt for a small, moveable island in her kitchen renovation. She didn’t find exactly what she was looking for, but she did find something reasonably close: a cherry wood bar cart, which she snapped up for just $80 on Craigslist.

“It was in great shape, the drawers functioned well, and it was already on casters,” Jill says — all pros. But there was one con: “It just did not match my style at all!”

Credit: Jill Mansfield

Thankfully, that was easy enough to fix. Jill started by painting the cart in a soft blue (Amy Howard Home’s Credenza). The chalky finish paint was easy to use and required no sanding or priming, Jill says.

For the top, she turned back to Craigslist. “I scoured Craigslist day and night until I found a coffee table with a beautiful marble top that would fit perfectly on top of my bar cart,” Jill says. After removing the fold-down wood wings on the side of the cart, Jill attached the new marble top with construction adhesive.

Finally, Jill swapped out the top drawer’s metal knobs for delicate glass ones. The total cost for this redo? Just $250, including the cart, coffee table, paint, and other supplies.

Credit: Jill Mansfield/WYNREIS

“I love this cart as my kitchen island, and it’s functioned so perfectly so far,” Jill says. “It’s a great prep space, a drink serving station, a place to display flowers, and generally a place where my husband and I make dinner and have a glass of wine or beer and talk about our day. Everyone who comes to visit wants to buy it off me, but I have to tell them ‘sorry, not for sale!'”

Inspired? Submit your own project here.

This post originally appeared on Apartment Therapy. See it there: Before and After: A Dated $80 Craigslist Bar Cart Turned Modern Kitchen Island