How to Create a Farmhouse Kitchen for Less Than $200

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Yes, you read the title of this post correctly. I was able to completely makeover my kitchen for less than $200! How, you ask? Blood, Sweat, Tears and some paint supplies.

Last week, I shared a post about how to prep your kitchen to be painted and this post is an extension of that. Just as I suspected I am now blinded by the beauty that is my new farmhouse style kitchen and I have almost forgotten all of the hardships along the way to get it to where it is now.

When I began the research phase of this project nearly every blog post I read had a disclaimer somewhere about mentally and emotionally preparing yourself for this intense of a project. So here is mine: This project takes time. Lots of time. And this project takes patience. LOTS of patience. No two kitchens are alike so researching and preparing are great, but unexpected things will definitely come up. You will probably make several unplanned trips to the hardware store for various items you never knew you'd need. You will probably come to a point where you wish you could hit the backspace button and never start painting your cabinets in the first place but trust me... IT IS WORTH IT!

I am not kidding when I say that I would do this over and over and over again! I thought I would never hear myself say that I'd paint another kitchen but I totally would! Actually, I told my husband I'd be glad to do another kitchen makeover because I actually have some sort of idea what I'm doing now! To me, the scariest part of a project is the unknown. Not knowing what a certain step should look like, how a certain paint should look if it's drying correctly, etc. I honestly feel like I have officially graduated from an amateur DIY'er to intermediate (I'm giving myself these titles, obviously, haha). In short, if you're thinking about painting your cabinets to give yourself a new kitchen on a major budget I say GO FOR IT!

Now, let's get to the good stuff shall we? What does it take to do a complete kitchen renovation for $200? As I stated at the beginning of this post it takes blood, sweat and tears... and some paint supplies... but that's about it!

Here is what you will need (this post may contain affiliate links, you can read my full disclosure here):
If you read last week's post then some of this may be familiar but I wanted to make sure to combine it all in one big post for you!

Day 1: Disassemble Kitchen (1 hour)

I thought this part would be the WORST of it, I really did, but it was actually pretty simple. I made sure to label our cabinets by simply using numbers and putting a piece of tape on the inside of the frame where the coordinating door/drawer belongs.

Day 2: Clean Cabinets (2 hours)

I was honestly prepared for our cabinets and drawers to be so dirty that I'd have to spend hours cleaning them but it wasn't as bad as I thought. I tried a few different methods and finally settled on spraying each cabinet/drawer with a TSP substitute solution (came in a spray bottle) and using the rough side of a sponge to scrub them down. Using this cleaner I didn't have to scrub too hard.

Once I had scrubbed them down with TSP, I used a different sponge and some warm water to 'rinse' each cabinet and remove any residue left behind.

Then, I simply patted them down this a clean towel to remove any excess water.

Day 2: Sand Cabinets (1.5 hours)

After cleaning my cabinets, I let them dry for about 30 minutes. Then, I started sanding. I really went back and forth on this step. I first tried using deglosser but honestly did not know what I was doing and couldn't tell if anything was happening. There was also some weird white residue being left behind so I decided to simply use sanding blocks.

I'll be real honest, I still don't know if I sanded the cabinets enough because I never felt like any gloss or sheen was really gone but I decided to just give every surface a light sand and then hope the primer did it's magic. Some people skip the sanding and/or deglossing step all together so I felt confident in this decision (er... somewhat confident... we will see over time!).

Day 3: Prime Cabinets (4 hours)

Once the cabinets were cleaned and sanded it was time to start priming. I'm afraid what I'm about to say may scare some people but after sanding I decided there wasn't enough dust to justify a second cleaning so I simply used tack cloth to clean them one last time before applying the first coat of primer.

I chose to use Kilz Max primer simply because I had seen it recommended by several other bloggers. I'm not sponsored or endorsed in any way, shape or form here just a product I liked!

I started with a small 1 inch. angled brush in the corners and detailed areas applying a very thin coat so as not to let any paint pool in the corners.

Then I went back with a small 3/8 nap foam roller. I chose this roller because it is supposed to be most like spraying (which I wish I had the guts to do..... I won't tell you that I have a paint sprayer and didn't use it for this project... whoops I just did).

This is what the first coat of prime should look like.

I repeated this process on each side of each cabinet, then again for a second coat. It is completely up to you whether or not to do two coats of primer but I had a few people tell me they wish they had so I went for it. In total, priming the cabinets took about 4 hours (over two days with drying time).

Day 4: Prep & Prime Frames (4 hours)

Prepping your frames to be painted is similar but also a much different process than your cabinets and drawers. You will still want to clean them the same way (TSP Substitute + Rinse with water + Towel dry) but then you also need to tape off all the edges and corners. It is completely up to you whether or not you'd like to paint the inside of your cabinets but I chose not to. I did, however, paint any of the inner corners that were a dark brown.

I'm the worst blogger ever and completely forgot to take before pictures of everything taped off but it is a pretty self explanatory step.

Now you're ready to paint!

Day 5: Start Painting

The paint that I chose required 16 hours between coats and I actually gave them about 24 hours just to be safe. I also started this project outside in my garage but it was so hot at the time of day I was able to get out and paint that I decided to move things inside where I felt they'd have a better chance of drying properly. My plan had been for Day 5 to be painting the backs of the cabients and the frames, then day 6 would be the front of the cabinets, then Day 7 would be backs and frames and day 8 would be fronts. Well, based on moving the project things got push back a day. So on Day 5 I was only able to paint the first coat on the frames.

After painting frames
Day 6: Paint first coat on backs of cabinets (2 hours)

I applied my paint with both a 1 in. angled brush and a foam roller. I started by painting the detailed areas and then going over the whole thing with the roller.

Day 7: Paint first coat on fronts of cabinets and second coats on frames (4 hours)

When painting the frames, I mostly used a brush and I made sure to do thin even coats to avoid any pooling or drips.

Once the detail work was complete, I went over the large areas with a foam roller.

I used the foam roller at an angle to get the detail on the edges of each cabinet to keep them uniform.

Before drying the cabinets may look like the paint is uneven but that is the beauty of the BM Advance paint- self leveling!

Day 8: Paint second coat on backs of cabinets (2 hours)

Welp, things don't always go as planned and day 8 brought me to tears as I realized I was going to need a third coat of paint on the cabinet doors. I think it was a mixture of exhaustion and fear that pushed me to a breaking point. I was so worried that so many coats of paint would lead to pooling and/or paint drips.

Day 9: Paint third coat on front of cabinets (2 hours)

What. A. Day this was! I was so excited to be done painting these cabinets! I let them dry for 24 hours and then began to re-assemble my kitchen!


Okay- let's get to the good stuff, shall we? The REVEAL!

Here is where we started.

Our kitchen seemed so dark and dated.

These cherry cabinets just were not my style.

And this is what my new farmhouse kitchen looks like!

I still cannot believe I am looking at my kitchen!

I had so much fun adding in all of the little details in this space.

I shopped my home for most the kitchen accessories but I did decide to splurge on some new dish soap and a fun bamboo dish brush. I put it all on this fun cake plate I found in the Target Dollar Spot!

This is my view when I walk into the house!

I just cannot believe how much lighter it looks!

I traded in my old coffee station for a baking station!

How fun are these pendant lights I picked out on Amazon for $30 a piece! They definitely bring in a fun farmhouse element without being too dark or heavy.

I also tied in the glass element with these fun chalkboard mason jar mugs that I've had sitting around for years. I love how fun they look on this mug rack!

In terms of decor, I shopped my home for most of what you see pictured. The only purchases I made were a new rug, some decorative dish soap and a bamboo dish brush- less than $30! I did also get the glass pendant lights you see above as a birthday gift but I included those in my $200 budget. Here is a source list for the rest of the accessories in the kitchen or similar links:
As most of you know, this was only phase 1 of our kitchen makeover but it was definitely the biggest and most time consuming part. I am not sure when we will get around to the rest of the makeover but here is an updated kitchen to-do list:
  • Paint Cabinets
  • Install faux shiplap on Island
  • Finish DIY Wood Barstools
  • Make and install barn doors to replace bifold pantry doors
  • Pick and install backsplash
  • Paint kitchen walls
  • Update chandelier
I hope you enjoyed this reveal! I am so beyond thrilled with the outcome of this project!

Update: I have added a few pieces to the kitchen! I am loving these new stools I found on Marketplace and this fun hook system from Ikea!

Thank you so much for visiting R&R at home! I hope you enjoyed this kitchen reveal!


  1. Replies
    1. Hi Tim! Thank you for stopping by! I am actually unsure of the actual paint name as this was on the walls when we bought this house and the only can of touch up paint left behind was a custom color match but if you'd like to send me your email address I can send a picture of the color details from the paint can!

    2. I would love the paint information if you could send it to me as well. Thank you! It looks amazing.

    3. Hi Jenn- I am so sorry. I have since moved and no longer have the paint can to share!

  2. Wow! What a transformation. At first I thought you had made a whole lot of other changes. I can't get over how it seems to have really opened up the space. Love it!

    1. Hi Kelli! Thank you so much for stopping by the blog! Isn't it such a drastic difference what paint (and hard work) can do?! Still pinching myself that this is my kitchen!

  3. This looks terrific. The white cabinets make the kitchen look so much lighter and bring out the warmth and beauty of the wood floor. Also think clean refrigerator doors are a plus. Great job.

    1. Hi Diane! Thank you so much for stopping by! You are so right about the refrigerator! It really helps the space feel put together!

  4. Wow, cool post. I’d like to write like this too – taking time and real hard work to make a great article… but I put things off too much and never seem to get started. Thanks though. wooden kitchen cabinet

  5. You have a good point here!I totally agree with what you have said!!Thanks for sharing your views...hope more people will read this article!!!


Share your thoughts with me!

Latest Instagrams

© R&R at home. Design by FCD.