A Farmhouse Kitchen Redo for $564


A farmhouse kitchen is a classic and timeless design that brings warmth, comfort and charm to any home. However, as trends and styles change over the years, an outdated farmhouse kitchen can start to feel dark, closed in, and disconnected from the rest of the home. The good news is that with some strategic updates and DIY projects, you can give your farmhouse kitchen a fresh, modern redo without breaking the bank! In this article, we’ll explore how to transform a tired farmhouse kitchen into an inviting space with light, bright colors, open shelving, and modern touches – all for $564 or less. Whether your goals are to lighten things up, increase storage, or give the heart of your home a budget-friendly facelift, read on for tips, inspiration, and step-by-step instructions for a farmhouse kitchen redo that won’t disappoint. Let’s dive in!

Take Down Wallpaper and Paint the Walls White

Wallpaper was very popular in old farmhouse kitchens, but it can really date the space and make it feel dark and closed in. Taking it down and giving the walls a fresh coat of bright, white paint is one of the best ways to instantly lighten up the space.

First, you’ll need to remove the existing wallpaper. Fill a spray bottle with hot water and adding a little dish soap and vinegar, then spray the walls generously. Let it soak in for 5-10 minutes. Use a putty knife or wallpaper scoring tool to gently scrape off the paper. Take your time with this step – going slowly helps get all the little paper fragments up.

Once the walls are bare, properly prepare them for painting by washing with TSP substitute to remove residue, then sanding glossy areas and filling any holes or imperfections with spackle. Allow any patched areas to fully dry before priming the walls. Opt for a high quality primer in the $15-$30 range – this helps the paint coverage and makes for a uniform surface. Allow the primer to dry completely before painting.

Finally, choose a bright white, semi-gloss paint for the walls – we recommend Behr Premium Plus Ultra White in semi-gloss which runs about $30 per gallon. Paint the walls in a “W” pattern, working in 3 x 3 foot sections. Allow each section to dry before moving on. This technique helps avoid drips. Apply two coats of paint for best coverage.

Take your time prepping the walls and choosing a high quality primer and paint – this will ensure your fresh white walls stand up nicely to wear and tear.

Estimated Project Cost: $110
($30 primer, $30 paint, $50 supplies)

Update Cabinets with New Hardware and Light Stain

Updating old, damaged cabinets can seem like an insurmountable task. But with some simple hardware swaps and a light stain, you can give your existing farmhouse cabinets a modern facelift on a budget. Here are the steps:

First, remove all doors and hardware – hinges, pulls and knobs. Fill any holes or imperfections with wood filler and sand until smooth. Then use a liquid deglosser like Krud Kutter to remove any residue or shine from the cabinet frames and doors.

Choose a light toned stain like Minwax Honey, Pine or Maple ($12 per quart) that will lightly warm the wood without darkening it too much. Use a stain pad or lint-free cloths to apply the stain in smooth, even coats following the grain. Allow to dry completely then add a second coat if needed. Apply a protective polyurethane top coat to protect the fresh stain.

For new hardware, matte black is a trendy choice that pops against light wood. Look for simple cabinet pulls ($2-$3 each) and knobs ($1-$2 each) in black – you’ll need 1-2 pulls/knobs per drawer/door, so measure to determine exactly how many you need. Install new hardware using a drill.

Finally, rehang doors and drawers. If hinges are loose or damaged, pick up inexpensive replacements.

With some basic DIY, you can update existing cabinets for around $150. Opt for high quality stain and protective top coats so your efforts stand the test of time.

Estimated Project Cost: $150
($30 stain, $100 hardware, $20 supplies)

Add Open Shelving for Display and Storage

Closed cabinet kitchens can seem gloomy and restrictive. A quick way to open up the space is by adding open shelving. This allows you to display decorative dishware while also keeping daily essentials within reach.

First decide on the size, number and placement of your new shelves. Measure the area above cabinets or on available walls to determine sizing. For a light, airy look, wider is better. Aim for 10-14 inches deep if going above lower cabinets. Take existing windows and electrical into consideration so shelves don’t block or obscure these elements.

Standard pine boards make inexpensive but attractive shelving. They come in 8 and 10 foot lengths so purchase accordingly for your needs. Sand the boards lightly then stain or paint to coordinate with your kitchen update. You can install floating shelves with sturdy L-brackets for a clean look. Measure and mark stud locations if affixing to a wall to ensure each bracket hits a stud. Or, attach a hanging rail directly to cabinets and place shelving atop for a floating look.

When styling your new shelves, place heavier dishware and glasses towards the back, and lightweight decorative elements towards the front. Keep items from looking cluttered by only displaying your favorites or most beautiful pieces.

Simple pine boards cut to size plus stain/paint and hardware can add up to around $100 depending on how much shelving you’d like to include. Take advantage of vertical space to open up your farmhouse kitchen.

Estimated Project Cost: $100
($30 boards, $30 stain/paint, $40 brackets)

Add a Brick or Stone Backsplash

Nothing says farmhouse kitchen like a brick or stone backsplash. Weathered bricks add charming character while providing an affordable alternative to pricier tile. Here’s how to achieve this look:

Gather your materials – old brick or stone, mortar and grout. Look for secondhand bricks salvaged from old buildings and homes. Limestone and other stone can often be found at rock yards. For mortar, use a premixed variety designed for tiling.

Prep the area by removing any existing backsplash and thoroughly cleaning the walls. Apply mortar generously using a grout float. Press bricks or stones in place, working row by row. Use spacers for consistent grout width. Allow mortar to set overnight before grouting.

Mix grout per package directions. Apply grout with a rubber grout float, using a sweeping motion to work into crevices. Allow to set for 5-10 minutes then clean excess grout with a damp sponge. Remove any remaining film with a cloth once fully set.

Seal the finished backsplash with a penetrating stone sealer to prevent staining and increase durability. Let cure fully.

With secondhand bricks or stone, you can achieve a charming backsplash for around $50 in materials. Take your time laying the bricks for a classic farmhouse look.

Estimated Project Cost: $50
($10 mortar, $10 grout, $30 sealer and supplies)

Add Curtains for Softness and Charm

Bright white walls and updated cabinetry looks crisp, clean and modern – but can also come across as stark and cold. An easy way to inject warmth and softness back into a redone farmhouse kitchen is by adding pretty curtains in natural fabrics like linen or cotton.

Measure each window carefully, and purchase readymade curtains a few inches wider than your windows so they hang nicely. Look for muted solids or subtle patterns that complement your new color scheme. Linen or cotton in lightweight fabrics provide a breezy, casual feel.

Rods should extend 4-6 inches beyond the window frame. Opt for wood rods painted to match the walls, or modern metal in black for an industrial vibe. Hang rods securely, using anchors for drywall or drilling into studs. Iron wrinkles from curtains, then hang them high and wide to maximize light and draw the eye up.

Add character with layered curtains – choose in gradients of white/ecru to keep the ethereal farmhouse vibe. Finish with pretty curtain tiebacks to round out the look.

Quality readymade curtains run around $30 per panel. With multiple windows, project costs here can quickly climb but are worth it to give your updated kitchen cozy charm.

Estimated Project Cost: $150
($100 Curtains, $30 Rods, $20 Tiebacks)

Remove Doors for an Open Concept

Many old farmhouse kitchens have doorways sectioning off different areas like pantries and the dining room. While this can make spaces feel small and cramped, opening things up creates an airier, modern feel.

If possible, removing doors leading into dining rooms, sitting rooms and pantries can really expand the space. Make sure walls are not load bearing first! Use a reciprocating saw to cut door frames from the studs. Remove frames carefully to avoid damaging walls.

Patch walls with drywall compound, sanding smooth. Texture walls to match surroundings and blend patches seamlessly. Prime and paint. Install wider casings around doorless openings – a visual frame gives definition without closing things off.

If removing doors altogether isn’t feasible, consider glass French doors. The transparency maintains an open, connected feel while still allowing you to close off spaces if needed. Pre-hung two panel doors cost around $100 and make a stylish addition to a remodeled farmhouse kitchen.

Deleting doors helps modernize a farmhouse kitchen and promote flow, though improvements can run $200-300 depending on the scope. But allowing light and space to move freely is worth the investment to prevent a cramped, closed-off feel.

Estimated Project Cost: $200
($50 Supplies, $150 New doors if applicable)

Add a Statement Light Fixture

With fresh white walls, updated cabinets and open spaces, the stage is set to choose a showstopping new light fixture. A statement fixture provides an instant focal point and brings farmhouse flair through vintage elements.

Look for multi-globe pendants, antique-inspired fixtures with Edison bulbs, or hammered metal lights with a handmade artisan vibe. Polished metal finishes like brass, gold or nickel provide warmth against cool whites. Opt for three shorter pendants over an island, or a long linear fixture for visual impact.

When selecting your statement piece, look for quality materials like solid metals, glass globes and fabric cords. Budget $150-$300 for something that makes an impression but fits with your overall redo cost. Measure carefully and purchase the properly scaled light for your space.

Some statement fixtures can be heavy, so make sure the junction box and wiring in place can support the weight. If additional electrical work is needed, add $100-$200 to your budget. Watch video tutorials to guide you through safely installing your showstopping new pendant or chandelier. Then stand back and enjoy how your bold light transforms the kitchen after dark.

Estimated Project Cost: $200
($150 fixture, $50 supplies/electrical if needed)

Add Farmhouse Accents on a Budget

After completing structural changes and updates, it’s time to accessorize your refreshed farmhouse kitchen. Vintage-style accents and touches of natural elements can round out the look without overspending. Here are budget-friendly ways to give your space that welcoming farmhouse charm:

  • Dry Sink – Beloved in many farmhouse designs, dry sinks offer additional counter space and display nooks. Find an antique one, or DIY your own using an old dresser fitted with a butcher block top for less than $50.
  • Botanical Prints – Frame inexpensive floral prints or botanical art pages from old books for easy vintage appeal. Buy a pack of thrifted frames and print downloadable art for around $30 total.
  • Baskets – In natural materials like rattan, baskets make charming storage bins for produce and pantry essentials. Group them on open shelves or in a dry sink. Opt for secondhand baskets to stay on budget.
  • Gingham Curtains – Small touches of classic gingham print add quintessential farmhouse flair. Make valances from bandanas, or add gingham chair cushions or cafe curtains. Shop fabric outlets like JoAnn for deals.
  • Fresh Flowers – Nothing says welcoming farmhouse kitchen like fresh picked blooms in Ball jars on the table. Pick up inexpensive wildflowers and greenery from the market.

With clever thrifting and DIY accents, you can add vintage farmhouse charm for $50 or less. Focus on small touches versus big ticket items to complete your new look.

Estimated Project Cost: $50


Reviving a tired farmhouse kitchen doesn’t require expensive overhauls or designer renovations. With strategic updates like fresh white paint, new hardware and lighting, opening up doorways, and vintage-inspired accents, you can give your farmhouse kitchen new life for $500-$600 dollars in materials. Refinishing existing elements saves costs while still making a noticeable impact. So don’t shy away from your outdated farmhouse kitchen – a budget-friendly redo can restore the heart of your home with charm and modern appeal. Use these projects and tips to craft a light, welcoming space your family and friends will gather in for years to come.