Kate’s Creatively Renovated Rental Kitchen

published May 4, 2010
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(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Who cooks here? katemtsui + mmicire
Location: Lowell, MA
Owned or rented? Rented
Kitchen size: 83 square feet

What challenge have you overcome in your kitchen? Our kitchen was renovated a few years ago with plain white cabinets and appliances. Oddly, the builders chose a dark blue laminate counter top. Challenge #1: customizing the kitchen with paint! To make the kitchen feel cozier and like its own space within an open loft, we painted the kitchen a chocolate brown to marry the white cabinets and blue counter top. Continued…

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What challenge have you overcome in your kitchen? Continued…
… It took one who three day weekend and three coats of paint to bring the kitchen to life! To prevent it from feeling too much like a cave, we left the ceiling white and installed under cabinet lighting. Total cost: $120

Challenge #2: not enough cabinet or counter space, and nowhere to eat! Solution: built an island.

The base of the island is two Ikea cabinets (base Akurum cabinets in Applad white; 2x$105). We screwed the two cabinets together and replaced the legs with six casters ($60). The back side is simply 1/8″ plywood painted flat white. One cabinet is used for pantry items. The other holds our recycling bins and garbage; we left the drawer fronts off for easy access. The island’s surface is our main prep surface (Ikea Numerar in black-brown; $59).

We also lofted a custom stainless steel shelf (interdynesystems.com; $300) with four Ikea Capita brackets ($20). We added two bar stools (Ikea Henriksdal; 2x$80), and this is our eating space. The eating area is complete with two small lights hanging over the island. Total cost: $810

What’s the story of your kitchen?
Chocolate loft kitchen with custom built island for meal prep and dining.

What is your favorite meal to cook here?
Lasagna with sauce and cheese filling from scratch!

Go to Small Kitchens contest page and see all entries so far
(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)