Before & After: A Dated, Orangey Kitchen Gets a Breath of Fresh Air with Projects That Start Around $50

published Mar 13, 2022
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Post Image
Credit: Liz Campbell

Bold and unexpected colors can adds tons of personality and whimsy to a home — case in point: this Scottish home that’s positively bursting with color — but they can also be a bit overwhelming. And a big, bold color choice can lock you into specific decor, whether you like it or not.

DIYer Liz Campbell’s (@lizcampbell22) 1998 kitchen was the definition of an all-over color. “The best way I can describe it was orange,” Liz says. “Orange cabinets, orange floors, orange walls! It felt outdated and too dark for my taste.”

She says the bones of the kitchen — the cabinets, the appliances, and counters — were in great shape, so she wanted to transform them with low-budget cosmetic upgrades that would eliminate the orange and bring a “clean, bright and modern” aesthetic to the kitchen.

Credit: Liz Campbell

“I’ve always wanted a white kitchen,” Liz shared on her Instagram story, and she brought her vision to life by painting her cabinets and island with Benjamin Moore’s Simply White.

Liz says on Instagram that she decided to keep her dark appliances because she didn’t want to “put [herself] into debt trying to buy new ones,” so she balanced out the black by painting her window frame black, a great way to add some character to an often-ignored feature.

But Liz did want to do something about the incredibly dark backsplash from before, so she removed it and installed a peel-and-stick wallpaper with a marble pattern that cost her about $50.

Credit: Liz Campbell

She also painted her laminate countertops using two coats of primer and white paint over top — a low-budget way to create brand-new looking counters that brighten the whole room.

“I had someone lay the flooring for me, but other than that it was 100 percent designed and executed by me,” Liz says of her remodel. “I spent my nights and weekends working on this project for four weeks.” On Instagram, she joked that her daily painting sessions were replacing her trips to the gym. (Upgrading your home and getting exercise in the process? That’s a win-win!)

Liz says she is most proud of doing the majority of the reno herself, particularly the plumbing and swapping out the sink. “I tackled a lot of “firsts” with this one,” she recalls. “Removing the kitchen sink and redoing all of the plumbing was intimidating but was such an amazing feeling when it was done — and with no leaks!”

Credit: Liz Campbell

Her new faucet is a U-shaped industrial pick from Home Depot, and she also swapped out other hardware in the space for more modern-looking finishes: long, sleek brassy pulls for the drawers and rounded knobs for the cabinet doors.

“It fits my style perfectly, and I wouldn’t change a thing,” Liz says of her final result. “I spend a lot of time in the kitchen and wanted a place that felt like me!”

The stylish white kitchen is a far cry from the old orange, with a bright and spacious look that feels like a breath of fresh air.