How To Remodel A Kitchen On a Budget

How To Remodel A Kitchen On a Budget



In other states across this country people are “over the moon.”

Or “wicked excited.”

Or “walking on air.”

Or they are “tickled pink.”

Not in Kentucky.


Here in the bluegrass state we have “a come apart.”


Having a come apart is when you own a gatehouse and you are shopping in IKEA with your sister-in-law and you can’t decide how you are going to decorate the kitchen because your husband has put you on a budget…..and then you see this orange and white polka-dotted rug with the cutest polka dots ever in the history of ever across the store…..and you realize that rug is exactly in the rug you have been looking for your entire life.

And you run to the rug.

And it’s only $39.99.

And your mouth opens and you stand there….kind of in a polka dot rug daze and kind of trying to grab the rug with one hand while wildly gesturing at your sister-in-law and pointing at the polka dots without ever making a sound.

You are speechless.

And totally not rugless.

That’s exactly what it means to have “a come apart.”


Remember the kitchen that started like this?


And this?

It wasn’t too bad.

The flooring was kind of cute….except it was peeling up at the edges and had all kinds of random stuff on it from when the gatehouse was a beauty shop.

It was fine….nothing special.

Until now…..


Can you even believe it?


And I stayed within budget.

We remodeled the kitchen for $294.17 (not counting the new refrigerator).

I’ve got so many fun projects to show you in the next couple of weeks….but in the meantime….here’s a few ideas on how to remodel a kitchen on a budget.


How To Remodel a Kitchen On a Budget

1.  I bought this lamp super cheap and re-did the shade.

It’s sale fabric from Hobby Lobby with orange ribbon hot glued to the top.

2.  We took off the cabinet doors on the top cabinet and striped the back of the cabinets.

3.  I shopped the house and some of the milk glass migrated over to the gatehouse.

I know you are surprised. 🙂


4.  The chairs and table are from a thrift store and painted white.

5.  We painted the walls white with SW Alabaster.

Then we striped the walls with gray horizontal stripes in SW Silverplate and painted orange letters above each gray stripe.


To paint the letters….I just traced chipboard letters with a pencil.

Then I painted the letter outlines with basic acrylic orange paint.


6.  I shopped the house and found these old baskets.

I spray painted them white and then spray painted orange numbers on them just like this project.

7.  All the melamine plates and dish towels are from IKEA.


8.  The sign above the new fridge (which currently only holds diet coke, water and one lemon) came from Hobby Lobby.

It didn’t look like this when I started.

I repainted it and distressed it a little.


All this shopping the house and gray stripes and orange painted reminders to keep your elbows off the table…..make my heart smile.


It’s bright and fun and wonderful kitchen.

And it all started with a trip to IKEA and a rug….

….and a good old-fashioned Kentucky “come apart.”  🙂

PS  If you missed the front of the gatehouse remodel with some fun curb appeal ideas….click here.

PPS  Sharing this over at Thrifty Decor Chick’s Before and After Party.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...


  1. Very nice job! Love how it looks so cheery and relaxing.

  2. I’m amazed how you put color together! The orange polka dot rug is perfect. Everything looks so pretty. It’s hard to believe you did all this on budget, very inspiring! I look forward to seeing more. Hope you have a great week!

  3. I’m “over the moon” with the transformation –so stinkin’ cute! Kudos!

  4. You have such a style! Not afraid to take risks either. Do you start with an idea in mind? Or does one piece – like the rug – inspire the whole room? I can’t make ANY decisions … and my house stays stuck in neutral. I think I’m afraid of making a mistake. I don’t want to spend money on a mistake. Good for you with the gatehouse! It’s fun and happy and carefree! Enjoy!

  5. Here in the Cornhusker state, I’m JUST THRILLED to see this bright, fresh, fun kitchen! Love the rug and the wall words! What a darling little kitchen, so fun and so bright (in more ways than one!)

  6. Well done! 🙂

  7. What a fun space. I love the color palette and the new floor. Great job!

  8. just darling.


    OMG…..The kitchen looks like something that you would see in a design magazine….it is just GORGEOUS…….Love the colors,love the table and chairs,love the rug,love the writing on the walls….oh and love the ceiling light shade!!!!! I think that you were a designer in a previous life!!!!!!!Great job as usual.

  10. Cindy brown :

    This room makeover made me smile! Love the white and orange combo! You are so talented!

  11. I am only skimming as I am getting ready to go to work. Immediately I loved the words on the wall. I have yet to experiment at all with such.

    Have a lovely day!

  12. Yep, Im from the WICKED CUTE zone. Love it. The rug is perfect! Your kids must think this is their own little house!

  13. Very cute, I would never have thought of using orange, but it’s perfect!

  14. You are very talented!! What a cute room! I can never come up with decorating ideas like this. Mine are so…traditional always. Even though I love different, my own mind never seems to go there when I am decorating. I draw a blank so just keep more of the same. Well, I do little “twists” but that’s it. Could be too that I want to keep my husbands “freaking out” to a minimum. 😉

  15. Awesome! (yeah, we still say awesome on LI) I love orange, it is one of my favorite colors.
    You did a great job…. how can I get myself a gatehouse? I think I’d move in myself! I love everything you do over here at Thistlewood Karianne!

  16. I just love the gray and white with pops of color, fabulous! I also didn’t realize you are in KY! We are getting ready to move to Louisville from Virginia… I’m hoping to find some good places to shop! Thanks for sharing your super cute space!

  17. Oh my goodness! What a transformation!!! I can see why you have “a come apart!” You are such a gifted designer and decorator. You truly have a vision for beauty! Everything about the gatehouse kitchen is adorable, just like you :-)!

  18. This looks fabulous, that rug is awesome, what an eye for detail you have! I love the gray stripes too and the lamp is perfect! ~Diane

  19. It is just plain FUN to see this. You did a great job on a small budget and you are entitled to a come apart. lol GREAT PLACE!!!! xo Diana

  20. Happy Monday, my sweet friend. The kitchen is fabulous – and fun! First time I have heard “a come apart”. Hmmm?!!! Definitely different.

  21. How clever, and very nicely done. As always!

    Is that the Ikea commercial looking faucet? I had sourced that for my mountain home (where all sides are done by hand :), but now I can’t find it online….. It may be in-store only.

  22. That would be…..all DISHES are done by hand…..

  23. F.U.N. you and the gatehouse 🙂 See you Thursday!

  24. Absolutely perfect. I can’t wait for details.

  25. Love the look. It turned out great!

  26. Seriously resourceful! That is the cutest kitchen I ever saw. I love the punch of color. GREAT JOB!
    xo Nancy

  27. You had me at polka dot rug and striped walls. I have never met a stripe I didn’t like. Fabulous!

  28. Barbara Moore :

    This southern girl just had a hissy fit over your precious gatehouse kitchen. I’m tickled pink you let us see it. And lastly…..bless your heart (of course!). Everything is absolutely adorable!

  29. Penny @ The Comforts of Home :

    What a happy place! I love it to pieces.

  30. So cute, Karianne!! It must be so fun to get to decorate a space that you don’t have to take too seriously…I really love all the pops of color!!

  31. It looks so darn stinkin’ cute! Love that spark of orange! 😉

  32. Well, butter my butt and call me a biscuit!! This is fabulous!! Love the gray and white stripes with the words!!! And, of course, ORANGE!! I bet you were coming apart from start to finish on this room! Love, love!!~~Angela

  33. Unbelievable. You never cease to amaze me me with your originality and creativity. Golly gee.

  34. Cool beans again!! My favorites are the pillows and the windowshade above the kitchen sink!! Of course, you will have to share how you did that:) From the Indiana state to the Kentucky state where we are great friends except for basketball season:)

  35. such a happy place!

  36. You have me at orange polka dots …

    Love, love, LOVE your budget kitchen makeover!!!!!!!!!!!! It’s exclamation point worthy or my love!!!

    🙂 me

  37. Wow – what a gorgeous space! You’re such a fabulous decorator, I am always in awe of what you do. Love the baskets on the tops of the cabinets, too.

    Happy Monday KariAnne!

  38. So cute! I love the cheerful feeling in the kitchen! You always amaze me!

  39. Looking good!! So bright and cheerful!

  40. Those are MY chairs! I have a set, also a thrift store find, also painted white and I have been looking for a couple more. Those chairs are hard to find. At least when you are looking high and low for them. Love the rug.

  41. Love it! It’s like you are a magician, or something.

  42. What a great look..Bright and cheerful..Love the colors..

  43. I am “beside myself” over this transformation! So cheerful and happy with all the charming details. Another wonderful job, KariAnne!

  44. Girl….. I am tickled pink and orange….Those are 2 of my favorite colors together…..An AMAZING job……. I hope that gatehouse is going to have a bed in it….because, if I ever make it to Kentucky, I would be over the moon to just come by and see it in person….Once again , your photography is just fantastic…WOW

    amy watson

  45. That extra .17 cents really makes this room! My daughter has that light in her room – love it! I’ve got my panties in a twist over this!

  46. Once again you have left me speechless… what an amazingly beautiful kitchen this is! I would be in heaven if I woke up every day and got to pour my coffee in this gorgeous space! Pink is my favorite color and orange is my 2nd… put them together and I am just “tickled pink” !!

  47. This is so adorable!!! I love the color scheme who would have thought one rug could inspire all this!! Can’t wait to see what you do with the rest! You go girl!

  48. I’m having a “come apart,” “freak out,” and “meltdown” (in a good way) all at the same time at the overwhelming cuteness of the gatehouse!

  49. I have come-aparts often. Usually in places like Ikea, Tuesday Morning, TJ Maxx . . . and my family just smiles and shakes their collective heads. 🙂 Rugs, lamps, dishes. Some of my favorite come-apart items.

    I love your lettering on the walls – I can’t even get my toenail polish on without overshooting the lines. Not sure if I would EVER be able to do THAT! My husband, on the other hand, would be great. He’s the “cut-in-king” at our house! LOL

  50. Oh Karianne, it is so perky! It definitely reflects your personality… I LOVE it!!! Yes your personality and the kitchen!! Great job!

  51. great colour combination and not too “over-the-top” – the calmness of the white and silver really let the orange pop – makes it look sunny and bright!

  52. Sha-zam! Pow! Ka-Boom!

    A-mazing transformation (I would have expected nothing less, you know?).

    It’s beautiful.

    And how exciting that you did it within your budget? Honestly, does that EVER happen?


    Congrats! It’s a beauty!

  53. It looks lovely!!! I love the lettering above the stripes…whimsical and “teachable”. So fabulous!

  54. How do I LOVE this…let me count the ways!!! It is rockin in red!!! love eat your veggies (but of course I would : ) the details details details are simply Amazing…WOW…did you hear me…WOW WOW WOW!!!!! You are so the read deal my friend…HGTV should scoop you up now!!!!! : ) hugs…

  55. Yep… I would have taken someone out for the rug!! The kitchen is just fabulous! Can’t wait to give you a squeeze in a few days!

    Take care,


  56. THIS makes me love color. It looks so awesome, Kari! I actually had a vision for a kindasorta similar wall treatment in my front living room, but I was going to roll on a chalkboard coating over the gray stripes and write little memories and quotes whenever my kids say something cute or funny with a chalk pen. I’m quite happy that I thought like you for a sec! 😉 I love how you did the lettering above the stripes though and accented with the orange! I even thought the countertop was new until I scrolled back up. As always, you. are. amazing. and I would love to pal around IKEA or thrift haunts with you someday, but no IKEA and no KARI nearby. 🙁

  57. Super cute – I absolutely love it. The big orange words on the wall are my favorite. Taking off the doors and painting the stripes in the back of the cabinet was a great way to liven up those basic cabinets. What did you use for the flooring? It is very pretty and I am guessing inexpensive as well?
    Really fun – thank you so much for sharing!

  58. WOW!!! You are one amazing decorator friend! I love the grey and the orange! It’s so lovely! I love getting that inspiration from just one thing and then working everything else around it. LOVE the stripes with saying on the wall! Great idea!!!


  59. I can’t wait to hear more details–it looks fabulous! Our kitchen is in need of a remodel BUT yes, that budget thing…so any budget tips you have would be most appreciated. 🙂

  60. I would so have “a come apart” if I had such a fun place to play. Loving the orange and gray.

  61. You made $294 look like a million! And I know the faucet was a chunk of that. Girlfriend, you make paint sing…:)

  62. Once again you delight and amaze!! So fun and charming, love the rug! My friend has the black and white version in her daughter’s nursery – so cute!

  63. I’m bespotted–and so is your kitchen. It is absolutely adorable. And all that color, color, color–be still my heart. I want to sip a cup tea there and eat tiny little tea cakes, no wait, BIG tea cakes. Now we’re talking. Can’t wait to see more.

  64. SO DARN CUTE!!!!!!!!!! Happy and fun, just like YOU!!!

    Great job, penny pincher!!! You rocked it!!!

    Can’t wait to see your face at HAVEN!

  65. Love the room…love the colors!!! What a happy place. My daughter and I shopped at Ikea (Potomac Mills, VA) last month and she bought the exact same rug for the reading area in her classroom. We both loved it and it was only ( I hate to tell you) 19.99……we love it even more now. Years ago (in the 70’s) I hated orange, the avocado and orange theme was everywhere and it seemed too loud to me. I have started to enjoy orange in the last few years, especially when paired with white, tourquoise or pink. You have great color sense and I love your kitchen remodel!

  66. I had never heard of a ‘come apart’. Your kitchen is just presh!

  67. Adorable, adorable, adorable. My dear, I do think you’ve done the impossible!

  68. Seriously, you are the most creative person ever! I love the gate house!

  69. Tell me about that window covering….?

  70. Seeing the reveal of the kitchen makes me want to do the “mixer” (it is a kitchen afterall, so the lawnmower wouldn’t be appropriate, right?). It’s bright and fun and so very Karieanne! Can’t wait to see the rest of the rooms.

  71. What a happy and “alive” kitchen, KariAnne … incredible job, once again! IKEA rocks!

  72. Just amazing, Karianne! You are a creative genius and I’m going to squeeze you to death when I see you!

  73. absolutely adorable. perfect and fun…

    above all, the low budget is when my jaw just dropped! you are one talented girl!

  74. Amazeballs! That is the most gorgeous thing I’ve ever seen.

  75. Absolutely beautiful! I love the stripes and orange words and that you were able to do so much on a budget! You are one talented lady! 🙂


  76. Your posts are always entertaining as well as beautiful! Adorable kitchen!

  77. So beautiful and fun! Love everything! What kind of flooring is that? Looking for a new kitchen floor that is budget friendly. About to look at your post about your bedroom flooring and leave another question.:) Love your home!

  78. It’s looking fab Karianne! I love the orange. Great ideas.

  79. You have taken that kitchen from worn and tired to fun and fabulous! I can see the ideas inspiring many, including young people off to dorms and shared housing in the next few weeks. This is going to be in a magazine(s), I can feel it.

  80.! Can’t wait to see you ‘a come apart’ at Haven Kari!! 2 more sleeps! Love the paint colors you used! xo Heather

  81. Lovely, Karianne. It’s so cheery and welcoming and fun- just like you. See you soon! 😀

  82. I don’t know what we call it in Minnesota, but whatever it is it’s not as exciting as a come apart.

  83. I absolutely love it – so bright and light and perfectly KariAnne!

  84. Hey now, Miz karianne….I am tickled pink to finally see this adorable gate house kitchen! That’s quite an awesome job of staying on your budget….if it’d been me, I’d probably have pitched a fit, or had a hissy…so thank goodness you didn’t have witness that scene. 😉 But, after all these years it’s interesting to find out that what I’ve been really been doing is having a come apart…huh, who knew! And all that ‘wicked’ this ‘n that has trickled over to the boonies in Kansas and Missouri….and that’s Missouri with an UH, not an I, on the end, by the way…but personally I just prefer to say, AWESOME…YOU GO GIRL!

    • It’s interesting how, at the end of a very long day, I tend to leave some words out, while repeating others…..sigh…

  85. Your gatehouse kitchen can make anyone “come apart” with excitement as it is just the cutest kitchen in Kentucky!….and to think it all began with that adorable rug!…

  86. I love this kitchen! I love, love, love it. As in, there is no part of it I don’t love. Can’t wait to see you soon! Did I mention that I love this kitchen?? I might be having one of those come apart things!

  87. So awesome! I actually have that rug but in black in my livingroom! It’s shown in my livingroom makeover post, and then again in my product post!

  88. So awesome! I actually have that rug but in black in my livingroom! It’s shown in my livingroom makeover post, and then again in my product post!

    hope you don’t mind i linked back to this post of yours to show people how else they can use that rug.

  89. I love it! That is seriously the cutest, most adorable kitchen I’ve seen! Love it!

  90. Karianne, to use your words, YOU ARE A ROCKSTAR! It’s clean, crisp, and beautiful! I LOVE it!

  91. oh you know – just comment #94 here 😉 fabulous kitchen Karianne!

  92. Fabulous! x

  93. It is so, so darling! LOVE the rug. The walls and words are too much fun. I love to see the terrific ideas and projects people come up with and make happen. My creativity is miniscule, so I just enjoy other people’s! 🙂

  94. One word, no three words: Cute cute and Cute!!! Great tips, I LOVE the lettering, and the colors you chose! It makes the kitchen pop and look so fresh and inviting! Fantastic job!

  95. Wicked cool! Says the Maine-ah!

  96. Absolutely, positively LOVE it! Another fantastic job!

  97. I want to be your next door neighbor! You make playing house look so fun! I love the shelves & all the stylin’.

  98. I don’t want to speak for all Australians…. but I think our expressions would contain too many words of the four letter variety! Lets just say there are so many ways to say the planets are aligned and it’s meant to be…Cool Bananas being my fav!

  99. What a bright and cheerful kitchen! You are so creative, one of a kind! Such a pleasure having you share at Amaze Me Monday!

  100. Love it! I’m coming apart here in New England. So many ideas to steal! 🙂

  101. I never knew that polka dot designs can have this kind of effect to a kitchen room. It was such a great makeover. I really like how it turned out to be.

  102. Karianne,
    I could look at your decorating skillz all day long…

  103. What a fun and cheery space! I love love love it. 🙂

  104. I LOVE that you wrote those sayings on the wall. It’s so so perfect, but I wouldn’t be brave enough to do it. I love it!! Can I move in? 😉