Katherine Thewlis didn’t let being a renter stop her from tackling the kitchen in her 1,200-square-foot Johnson City, Tennessee, home last fall. The e-designer and blogger was more than ready to say goodbye to many features within the space, which included what she called an Easter egg yellow hue, wood paneling, and linoleum floors. However, given that she wouldn’t be able to take on a major renovation, Katherine had to get creative. She needed to keep the kitchen’s original flat panel cabinets intact for storage purposes but did give them a major facelift. “I sanded and repainted them myself to match the wall paint color,” she says. “I wanted it to have a built-in look. I purchased some two-inch wood balls as the cabinet knobs, which I painted to match the doors.”
Sometimes it’s love at first sight with real estate, and that was very much the case for blogger and author Melissa Coleman of the Faux Martha. When her husband spotted the 1970s Minnesota A-frame online, they made a beeline for the property with their five-year-old in tow. They put in an offer on the way home and, Melissa satisfyingly acknowledges, “the rest is history.” Cut to a plumbing issue, which found Melissa and her husband opting to slightly bump out the kitchen to accommodate more people, add counter seating, and bring the material and colors up to date while still paying homage to the kitchen’s original quaint roots. The color palette was inspired by nature or, alternately, as Melissa half-jokingly notes, “that inspiration could also be attributed to the neon green shag carpet that once lined the first floor.” Though the color of the painted kitchen cabinets became a bit of a saga, it was well worth it.