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The Kitchen Makeover: Five Inexpensive Ways to Update Your Kitchen

by Susanne Clemenz

Is your kitchen visually boring to you? Perhaps your vinyl wallpaper looks dated, or the lighting looks commercial, or you've been coveting new counter tops. These kitchen makeover ideas deal more with the looks of a kitchen than its functions:

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  1. Replace or remove the wallpaper. If you want to transition to a painted surface, wash the stripped walls with a wallpaper stripping solution to get rid of every bit of paste, as paste residue crackles paint. A simpler choice: Shop for papers with solid or subtly mottled colors and textures. Vinyl wallpaper is still a great choice for clean-ability.
  2. Choose a new paint color scheme. It can do wonders for a kitchen makeover. Besides the wall color, consider remodeling kitchen cabinets with new doors and drawer fronts. Or paint cabinet doors to contrast with painted cabinet cases.
  3. Read up on today's kitchen lighting ideas. Track, task, and island lighting have greatly expanded styles that are also energy efficient.
  4. Do something special with the wall space between counter tops and upper cabinets. Maybe a textured tile with an accent line of mosaic-size glass tiles? Play with ideas on graph paper.
  5. Splurge on new counter tops. Counter tops are available in a variety of solid materials, or choose from the many laminate options to get a similar look for a fraction of the cost.

Why not spend your money where you spend so much of your time--the kitchen! You'll enjoy it more, and remember, an up-to-date kitchen is a big resale asset.


About the Author

Suzanne Clemenz designed her passive solar home and interacted with the contractors every day of the 6-month project. She started drawing floor plans and making models in the early '70s after purchasing several building lots. Recently she expanded and

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