My Kitchen Makeover: Yellow & Gray!

September 17, 2013 | by Jocie (email) |

This post on my kitchen makeover originally ran on One Project Closer in April 2013 but I wanted to share it with those who are new to us! Thank you for reading and I’m so happy to have you all!

Kitchen Makeover - OPC The Better Half

“Before” Kitchen

In June 2012, I began the makeover of my kitchen….yes, it took me 9 months. It wasn’t that big of a makeover, but I got a bit distracted and anxious to start new projects. The kitchen makeover started because, while I have a 7 year old kitchen, the design and feel was darker and more formal than my style has become. I was hoping to transform the kitchen into something bright and trendy.

That being said, I did NOT want to paint the cabinets, even though that is the style. I know, painted cabinets are beautiful and can really open up a small kitchen like mine. You see, the problem is that its hard to restore wood back to a wood finish once painted (without even more work). So I don’t want to paint my nearly new cabinets just to have dark cabinets come back into style.

But the cabinets are so dark and take up so much of the kitchen, it is a real design challenge to brighten up the kitchen without painting the cabinets.




OPC The Better Half

“After” Kitchen

You have most likely seen bits and pieces of the kitchen in the past 9 months as I have slowly worked on different elements, But now, here they all are in one fabulous place!

I started by painting chevrons in the backsplash, and shared with you my easy chevron tutorial. Some readers at the time asked how the chevrons hold up to scrubbing, since backsplash sees a lot of action. Surprisingly, it has been fabulous! It scrubs really well, and what I can’t get off with an easy washcloth wiping, I use my magic eraser. It honestly looks like new!

Next up, I made a no-sew valence for the window. Well, if I’m being honest, I made two! lol. The first one, while beautifully constructed, ended up not being the right look I was going for.

Then, I made a pallet sign for over the sink that says, “I Kiss Better Than I Cook.” I realize that makes me sound a bit easy and cocky, but I promise, Ethan is the only guy I’m kissing! Or maybe it just means I’m a bad cook. Lol.

Be sure to check out my video tutorial and deconstructing pallets and making pallet signs.

I Kiss Better Than I Cook - OPC The Better Half

Then, probably the most fabulous element of the kitchen is a collaboration with Ethan – a custom spice rack! He built it and I painted the outside white and the insides yellow with scrapbook paper backing. I also bought bunches of containers and spice jars from Ikea to fill it. While its pretty in the pictures, it is even more fabulous in real life!

Oh, and I added a quick free-hand painted pallet above…because why not?

Spice Rack and Pallet Sign - OPC The Better Half

Next, I revamped a chalkboard from IKEA that I found at a yard sale for $1 and freshened it up with some paint and fabric flowers. I also ModPodged scrapbook paper to wooden letters to place above the chalkboard.

Chalkboard and Wooden Letters - OPC The Better Half

Finally, I painted my pantry door yellow! It is FABULOUS! My sister isn’t a big fan, but I love it. It adds a pop of color without being over the top.

Oh, I found this cute birdcage photo display at Michael’s for 50% off.

Yellow Door - OPC The Better Half

Photo Birdcage - OPC The Better Half

I also painted the inside of the door so we could enjoy the pop of color even when its open. Do you recognize Izzie with her straight hair? (she begged and begged for me to straighten it)

Yellow Door - OPC The Better Half

And of course, my boxed wine holder sits proudly on the counter! Pay no attention to the fact there is no boxed wine in it. Hahaha

Boxed Wine Holder - OPC The Better Half

And here is the whole kitchen! Ta-Da!

Kitchen Makeover - OPC The Better Half

I also bought a rug from HomeGoods to go in front of the sink. In the pictures, it looks a little dark and bold in comparison to the rest of the room but in real life, it looks cute! πŸ™‚

Kitchen Makeover - OPC The Better Half

Kitchen Makeover - OPC The Better Half

Kitchen Makeover - OPC The Better Half

Kitchen Makeover - OPC The Better Half

DIY Kitchen Makeover - OPC The Better Half

Need More Kitchen Inspiration?

Haven’t got enough kitchen from my house? Well, I have been hanging out over on Hometalk getting some inspiration of my own! Feel free to check out my kitchen clipboard and see what I love in a kitchen.

22 Inspiring Kitchen ideas - OPC The Better Half

If you haven’t heard, Hometalk is a home & garden community where DIYers and pros share ideas, inspiration, and advice for their homes. You can browse through anything from DIY cleaners and repurposed pallets to successful gardening secrets and beautiful remodels from the pros. It’s a really cool way to get great home ideas and connect with other DIYers!

What do you think? Any great ideas for brightening up a kitchen without painting the dark cabinets?

Thanks so much for reading along and sharing in my excitement over my new kitchen makeover!

Don’t forget to check us out on Facebook and Pinterest!

42 Responses
  1. cute!!! Love that yellow door…it’s bright and happy!

  2. It looks so so so good. Love the yellow door and chevron backsplash!

  3. cassie says:

    so fun! i love the yellow door! πŸ™‚
    we are about to start our kitchen makeover soon and i am ITCHING i can’t wait!!!!

  4. I must say, your kitchen is one of a kind. Great job fighting the trend to paint your cabinets. They really do look lovely as-is. I think my favorite part is the yellow pantry door. That is a beautiful shade of yellow – so cheery and fun!

  5. Megan says:

    It’s so beautiful, Jocie! I love the spice rack and the valance.

  6. paintergal says:

    I really like the yellow door. It’s so cheery and fun. Love the spice rack too.
    Did you do the writing on the boards? Pretty script.

  7. That is one fabulous kitchen! I love the yellow and signs! Just lovely!

  8. Jocie…this is amazing. Yellow and gray is my fav color combo and chevrons are my favorite pattern. I love the pallet signs that you do. You are very good at free handing the text. Everything looks gorgeous!

  9. Your kitchen looks wonderful, Jocie. I’m glad you didn’t paint the cabinets. I love to paint furniture, but in the back of my mind, I keep thinking, This is going to be a bear to refinish when natural wood comes back into style!

  10. Jacque says:

    Your kitchen is so awesome!!! I love the colors i bet you just love being in there!

  11. Jacqueline says:

    Amazing! I love the chevron wall the best and the fun yellow bits everywhere!

  12. Tanya says:

    I love your updates!! The yellow door is so happy and goes great with the rest of the space. And the wine box holder? BRILLZ!!

    xo, Tanya

  13. Maureen says:

    Love the yellow door! and wow what a difference on everything else

  14. Ooooo, I love everything about it especially your pallet creations, spice rack and that poppin’ yellow door!

  15. I love this, so unique! It’s colorful, but not overly so, and everything matches so well. I think my favorite part is the yellow pantry door πŸ™‚ And I kiss better than I cook too…way better. There’s really no comparison, haha.

  16. Reuben says:

    My favorite part is the chevron backsplash. very cool look. good job.

  17. JustME says:

    I love the finishing touches you added Jocie. The yellow door is awesome. I love a happy yellow like you picked.
    Though a yellow backsplash would have been cute I think the chevron works with better with yellow accents. Maybe you can find some vintage yellow canisters.

  18. poiboybf says:

    Those chevrons on the rug go great with the ones on the backsplash. FWIW I actually really like unpainted cabinets. Maybe it’s the horrible ones that I grew up with, but I think seeing the natural wood is much nicer looking.

  19. Beautiful! This year I’m loving that yellow-gray combination. You really opened it up without painting the cabinets! I love the spice rack and the chevron!

  20. It looks fantastic! I love all the details…

  21. Kate says:

    You took a beautiful kitchen…. and made it have SPICE! I love this space with all the character and charm!! Great work girly!!!

  22. Trace says:

    Really love your signs…original and cute. Your kitchen certainly got spiced up and the yellow made it pop! The chevron deserves an award I bet it was hard to do all the taping and painting, any tips? How long did the project take? Awesome job, now go eat and relax!

  23. Super cute! I love the yellow… I am pinning!

  24. Lindsey says:

    Love the yellow! We just painted our kitchen door yellow too. I love how yellow makes everything so bright and cheery. πŸ™‚ You have such great space in your kitchen… so jealous that you have a pantry!

  25. Jamie says:

    So I totally love this kitchen the grey and yellow rock, I was wondering if you could tell me what color of paint you used for the pantry door. I have a citrus theme in my kitchen and have wanted to paint my pantry door for over a year now but I just haven’t. I think I am ready now that I’ve seen yours πŸ™‚

  26. mom2kaelyn says:

    I absolutely love the colored door! The color scheme is so great for a kitchen. My dream kitchen will be mostly blue and white with splashes of yellow, I think. And a yellow door will be the best “splash” ever!

  27. Nichole says:

    Love the yellow. Moving my store to a new location and I am going to paint the entrance Door yellow…can I ask what colour and brand of yellow you used???

  28. cassie says:

    such a great happy space! love that backsplash! pining. πŸ™‚

  29. Shannon says:

    I love everything about this kitchen – especially the “spice” corner with all of your yellow accents! πŸ™‚

  30. supimeister says:

    I don’t plan on telling her, but I think the sign about cooking is true for my wife too πŸ™‚ haha

  31. Looks amazing Jocie! I love the yellow accents!

  32. Looooove that kitchen, Jocie! So bright and cheerful and I love all the DIY touches!

  33. Carissa says:

    LOVE your kitchen remodel! What is the color of paint that you used on the door?

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