Category Archives: Do It

1920′s Budget Kitchen Makeover

This 1920′s kitchen was in desperate need of a makeover.  New custom crafted cabinets were added for around $75 in materials,new  counters for less than $200, sink $120, faucet $150, lighting $60, new stainless backsplash $200 and appliances were added.  The old linoleum floor was pulled up to reveal wood floors that could be sanded and refinished.  The result?  See for yourself.

Kitchen Before

Kitchen before

Kitchen Before

Stove area before hot water heater was moved to attic and a new custom built cabinet was added

Kitchen floor once linoleum was pulled up

Kitchen After

Kitchen after

1920′s home renovation portfolio of before and after photos (kitchen)

One of the biggest transformations occurred in the kitchen.  I loved the custom built cabinets, but there was only one.  I also loved the idea of converting the “indoor/outdoor utility room” to be fully enclosed so that I could add a dishwasher to modernize the space.  It was a big job, but here is what was done:

Demo:  removed all pine tongue and groove slat walls, relocated back door from its current spot and removed half window, used Craigslist to dispose of all old appliances, reconfigure stainless counter top to fit a modern sink

Here is what I started with; in this photo you can see the slat walls, the back door in its current location and the lack of an additional upper cabinet:

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Quick and Low Cost Kitchen or Bathroom Cabinet Makeover

Your natural wood cabinets looking a little old and tired lately?   Try painting them!   For the cost of a can of paint and primer, you can give your cabinets a fresh new appearance.

Using a color that is anything but neutral can give your kitchen a customized look but for resale value, neutral is the safest bet.  White and black are always classic but if you want the cabinets to still appear to be wood, I love Behr’s Paint and Primer in One in the Espresso brown tint.  I’ve also noticed a trend toward grays or sage greens, but those get a little more personalized.  Some like the eggshell finish, I like the satin.  Choose the sheen you like the best for your own project.

Ready to do it?  Here are 5 easy steps to give your kitchen cabinets a quick makeover:

Step 1) Remove doors and drawer fronts.  Remove any door hardware.  A quick tip for hardware is to secure them with masking tape to the inside of the cabinet or drawer with masking tape so they won’t get lost or mixed up.
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Oops, wrong hole! How to fix cabinet hardware blunders.

Ok so we’ve talked about how to install cabinet hardware and you have decided to take on the challenge. http://agirlcandoit.com/2010/04/26/cabinet-hardware-how-to-install/

Yeah for you! Using the template I recommended, everything is moving along smoothly and then oops!  You find you drilled a hole in your cabinets in the wrong spot, even with your best attempts to be careful.  Or, the hole you drilled is too big and now your hardware is loose.  How can you fix this?  No fear, its easy!

1)    Cabinet hole in the wrong spot

You can use some wood putty and fill the wrong hole and sand smooth.  There are wood stain touch up pens in a variety of colors; match the one closest to your wood color.  Even better if your cabinet is painted; simply fill the hole with wood putty, sand and retouch your paint.  Usually these holes are so small and so close visually to your existing hardware, no one will even notice the mistake.

2)    Hole is too big

Place a few toothpicks in the hole dipped in wood glue and let dry.  Break off the toothpicks flush with the cabinet with some needle-nose pliers and reinsert your screw.  Sometimes just the little extra wood will be all you need.

Another way is to wrap your screw in wood putty, leaving the end that attaches to the hardware clean, then reinsert the screw into the hole and let dry.

Finally, another option is to insert the screw into a washer and let the washer come to a rest on the backside of your cabinet door.  The washer will keep the screw from slipping through the hole in the backside of your cabinet.  If the hole lets the hardware wiggle too much, you might have to use the toothpicks or wood putty along with the washer to ensure a good snug fit.

Hope that helps!

A Home Remodel Series (Part 3-How to replace a kitchen sink and faucet)

Day 3 has everyone hopping at my friend’s house!  With white cabinets and dark granite, she decided to switch from a stainless sink and faucet to a nice white Kohler sink with a Delta oil rubbed bronze faucet.  I love the contrast the new sink provides.  I think she’ll be very happy with the finished project.

Continuing with our series on quick and easy home improvement projects, lets move into the kitchen:

http://agirlcandoit.com/2010/04/27/a-home-remodel-series-part-1-before-demo/

Advice:  This type of project requires a little more advanced plumbing know how since it may involve some modification of the underside drain plumbing if a new sink’s drains don’t match up exactly to the old ones.  However, this is not a complex job that takes many hours, so if you do decide to hire a plumber, allow 3-4 hours at the most in their estimate; the parts should also be relatively inexpensive since they are standard PVC pieces that they are reassembling.  A little time and money can be saved though if you do the removal yourself following the steps below!

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A Home Remodel Series (Part 1-Before Demo)

One of my friends recently purchased a beautiful new home and has decided to complete certain improvements before moving day.  Basically, with ivory walls and beige carpet along with white tiles in all baths, the home is a virtual blank canvas for aspiring do-it-yourself’ers!!  My friend has generously agreed to let me take photos of the work before, during and after in order to follow the progress; at the same time, I will provide step-by-step advice on how to complete some of the work so that you may choose to do the same in your own home!  Some of the projects have a varying level of difficulty that you may opt to hire profession help for.

Stay tuned!!!

The blank canvas awaits:

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Cabinet Hardware-How to Install

Once you’ve determined the type of cabinet hardware you’d like to put into your kitchen or bathroom, its time to put the icing on the cake!

Cabinet Hardware-The icing on the cake!

The installation process is easy.  Here’s how:

1)     There are a couple of easy ways to determine placement of installation.   For cabinet doors, the lower right corner is the typical location.  For drawers, you will need a measuring tape to measure the middle distance between the two horizontal edges as well as the vertical edges.

Measure to find the middle of your vertical rise on drawers for correct location

Measure to find the middle point of the horizontal length on drawers Continue reading