Budget transformation! Blasé Before, High-Class After!

Okay! Hold onto your hats folks! This before and after just might surprise you when you find out how much impact you can accomplish with a relatively small budget.

I have a client that purchased a new home and wanted to do a facelift to her kitchen before moving in. She asked for my assistance to figure out the design plan. SMART GIRL! There were a few things about the kitchen that my client wasn’t thrilled about when she bought the home. Her list of “must haves” were:

  • Make the kitchen feel brighter and more updated
  • Keep the construction to a minimum
  • All-in budget of $5000

$5000 to re-do a kitchen?!?! Are you thinking “Tisha, have you lost your marbles?” While the possession of my marbles may be up for debate, working within a budget is what I do. Here was our plan to make her list of must haves a reality.


First we decided on the color palette. She liked the idea of a bright white kitchen with blue as the background. We decided to put the majority of her budget into a classic subway tile backsplash and new countertops. Those came out UH-MAZING! Then the rest of the budget was used for a few clever upgrades and some paint.

The before cabinets were much too small for the kitchen especially relating to the ceiling height.  My idea was to have a simple box constructed on top of each cabinet creating an open shelf look and then top each box with crown moulding. This simple addition creates the look of custom cabinets, expands the cabinet space and fits the room much better. The hardest part was explaining my vision to our fantastic carpenter.  I told him that I wanted a box on each of the cabinets and he tilted his head like my dog does when I say his name. However, we were able to get on the same page and as you can see below, the results came out wonderfully.

one more look at the before…..

Building out the open shelving above the cabinets.

The keys to recreating this kind of transformation in your own home is a little paint, creativity and maybe you have to make friends with a nice handyman who can build you a box to put on top of your cabinets. Thank you for hanging in with us here at Blue Eye DIY! Feel free to share if you think we are cool :).

7 thoughts on “Budget transformation! Blasé Before, High-Class After!

    1. Letisha Perry Post author

      Thanks Mona! It was a really fun project and particularly exciting to see it all come together.

  1. Sarah Bryce

    Absolutely gorgeous!!!! Inspiration for our kitchen remodel!!!! Any way we could get a tutorial on how to paint cabinets?!?! I have heard it is quite a task but it is what we want to do in our kitchen! White painted cabinets but have no clue the best paint to use, etc.!

    1. Letisha Perry Post author

      Hey Girl, Thank you for your kind words. In this kitchen we had my painter sand lightly first and then spray a primer and then spray a couple coats of paint. If you would like a good tutorial on how to paint cabinets yourself I have a friend that has done a great one on how to paint your cabinets with chalk paint found here How To Paint Your Cabinets With Chalk Paint. Good Luck! Be sure to share pictures!

  2. Jessica

    Yes – I’d love to see how you refinished the cabinets – they look great and I’d love to do the same to my kitchen! Are you able to pass along names of your contractors for those of us who live in ABQ? We’re also thinking about new countertops and those look great!

    1. Letisha Perry Post author

      Jessica check out the link I shared in link below. The tutorial by Sincerely Sara D is fantastic on How To Paint Your Cabinets With Chalk Paint. Also I have a great relationship with Angie the owner of New Leaf a great shop here in town that has Annie Sloan Chalk paint. She also teaches classes on all the fun techniques. If you need any contractors I would suggest contacting me directly and I can give you the right one for the your specific job. Good luck all you DIYers!!!


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