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  • Writer's pictureEileen Kupperman

Reno-Free Ways to Style Up Your Kitchen

New kitchen, no contractor! Here are some seriously simple ways to style up your cook space...

1. Add a Peel-and-Stick Backsplash

These days, faux tile you stick right on the wall looks like the real deal! Take it all the way to the ceiling for a wall of wow.

2. Get Really Glam Barstools

A new row of seats can make a big impact, especially when they’re metallic and have cool legs.

3. Paint Your Island

Got all-white cabinets? The contrast of dark gray painted on an island creates drama — the good kind.

4. Give Cabinets a Paintover

These cabinets may look brand-new, but they’re actually from the ’80s. Their dark wood finish quickly became a distant memory after a fresh paint job — crisp white on top and golden yellow below. For the smoothest result, always sand cabinets before painting.

5. Put Up Open Shelves

They make empty wall space functional. Style them with brackets and use a diamond drill bit if you’re mounting shelves on a backsplash.

6. Change Your Faucet

It’s one of those things people live with forever, yet a swap helps take years off a kitchen. A kind with a repositionable spout makes doing dishes a little bit easier.

7. Switch Out Your Stove

It’s not hard, as long as the one you want fits the same spot as the old stove. Suddenly your kitchen has a new centerpiece!

8. Hang a Pendant

A pendant in a natural material looks pretty in any style of kitchen. It’s a real game changer if your current light is made of an entirely different material, such as glass or metal.

9. Bring In an Island

Score extra counter and seating space personality, too, when it’s a bright color.

10. Upgrade Your Cabinet Knobs and Pulls

Knobs are easiest because one size fits all. When changing pulls, simplify things by getting newbies that are the same width as the old ones to avoid a patch-and-drill job.

11. Try a Totally New Shape of Light

When you have only one ceiling light box for a fixture, a wide style like this delivers four times the light — and the chicness!

12. Dress Up a Window With a Punchy Shade

If you have basic blinds, replace them with a Roman shade. You can have it made in a cool pattern.



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