Kitchen Makeover: Painter’s Block

Why haven’t I posted about my fabulous low-budget paint-only kitchen makeover? Because a week after I painted my cabinets green I started to… [face in palms] hate them. Oh the shame! I was supposed to transform my kitchen into something like the inspiration photo of this Parisian flat.

DIY, kitchen makeover, paint chips, benjamin moore, home on the range, olive green

I felt like a failure.  


And remember those 30-year-old GE ovens I raved about? Spoke too soon. Minutes after I published that post a gasket caught alight and rendered one unusable for Thanksgiving. I contacted GE. Naturally, they do not make replacement gaskets for ancient artifacts.


Oh, yeah, and our dishwasher, washing machine and clothes dryer? All kaput within the same week.


We got a new dishwasher (thanks, mom and dad), and bought a new washing machine and dryer. That’s all we’re getting for now. The oven can still be used for warming purposes. Not ideal, but at least we have the other oven for real cooking.


But guess what? I love the green cabinets again. Who has home on the range green cabinets? I DO!


So I continued with the makeover. And I busted out the Degreaser.

kitchen makeover, hood fan, high heat paint, degreaser, DIY

No, it’s not a long lost Pixies track, it’s just something you have to use when decades of the previous owner’s chicken fat have accumulated on something you’d like to paint. Degreasing is actually quite satisfying in that way that cleaning can sometimes be. You really see results instantly— just like in the infomercials.

kitchen makeover, hood fan, high heat paint, degreaser, DIY

I used high-heat appliance spray paint from a fireplace equipment store. I thought it would look like brushed steel when painted “pewter”. Wrong. It looked like, well, pewter. It had a weird blue tint. Like a steel-colored plastic toy hood. Huge disappointment.

kitchen makeover, hood fan, high heat paint, degreaser, DIY

I couldn’t reattach this. But I wasn’t going to buy a new hood fan just because this one was ugly. SO I went back to the paint store and bought brown.

kitchen makeover, hood fan, high heat paint, degreaser, DIY

I like it. The room is starting to become its own thing. I didn’t expect to go retro, but that’s what’s happening. And in our 1959 ranch, it works.

kitchen makeover, retro, vintage kitchen, DIY hood fan, DIY backsplash, olive cabinets, home on the range, benjamin moore

Next up is backsplash. I’m obsessed with Heath tiles, but I can’t afford them. Certainly not for a wall I intend to tear down within 5 years. So I’ve decided to paint a tile pattern with paint samples I’ve accumulated. Constantly telling myself that “we’re going to tear down the walls one day and remodel anyway” has given me a sense of freedom to experiment.


Wish me luck. What I’m about to do just might push us one step closer to the sledgehammer!



1 Comment

  • Reply vi February 20, 2014 at 12:04 pm

    ok i am looking at this again for you…..
    if you squint at the granite….there is a yellowish/tan earthy color going on…..
    so this is how you deal with that…. first off the green you have speaks a different ‘language’ it’s grayed out……. and not in a compatible way.
    so if you paint with the color that you see when you squint at the granite… go lighter if you’d like for the uppers and a few shades darker for the bottom…
    that will be better i think…. and the floor tile….i am so hoping that the color paint you get will go with the floor tile too…
    you may not like the stainless appliances against that either…. (there’s paint for that too)
    now if you get the shades right it should read as ‘white-ish’ and should also tone that granite down to something you can live with
    and a very simple way to do accent colors is to pick up stuff at the flea market (cheapo glass vases or stuff like that) and either spray paint or use that gallery glass stuff…. this way if it doesn’t work can either change the color or recycle it
    you can actually have some fun with this ….. but i think the green has you blindsided right now

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