Easy, Affordable Ways to Spruce Up Your Kitchen

A kitchen towel hanging on a vintage handle

If you hate your kitchen but can’t afford a big remodel, you can still make a few tweaks that will have a big impact. Here are a few of the easiest, most affordable ways to spruce up your kitchen without breaking the bank.


Refinishing cabinets, even simply by painting them, can be fairly time-consuming. And, while you complete your project, your kitchen might be out of use, causing you to spend more money eating out. Stick to smaller cabinet projects to change up your kitchen while still keeping it functional.

Install New Hardware

Installing new hardware is one of the easiest, most affordable ways to change up the kitchen.

First, open cabinet doors to determine the size of hardware you need. Measure between the screw holes in the doors. Cabinet handles are often made with a 3-inch or 4-inch spread (the space between the screws). After measuring, pick out your favorite pieces from a home improvement store. You can also check garage sales or thrift stores to collect quirky knobs and pulls that can be repainted. Or, leave them as they are to add character to your cabinets.

Use an ordinary screwdriver to remove all the existing hardware and attach the new pieces to your cabinets and drawers.

Bring Color In

You don’t have to change the cabinets to change the color of the kitchen. Instead, you can do it with fabric. Takedown old curtains and re-upholster chairs to freshen up the room. If you’ve been using hanging curtains, try Roman shades instead.

Adding a few new matching throw rugs to the room will add even more color. Fruit bowls, magnets, and vases will, too.

Add a Backsplash

If you work on one area at a time, you can install a backsplash in your kitchen without disrupting the kitchen's functionality. And, if you do your own tile work, you can save a lot of money on this easy project. Remember to measure the wall space you want to cover first; this allows you to calculate how much material you will need. Tiles are purchased by the box, so try to keep the project down to a single box to spend the least amount of money.

Add Organizational Tools

A few small touches here and there will give the kitchen a completely different look. Make the space feel new again by tidying it. Organize your kitchen by eliminating all the things you don’t need, and find a way to display the items you want to keep. A few floating shelves look great on a plain wall and give you valuable storage space for commonly used items. Add big baskets or decorative boxes to keep items accessible yet still attractively stored.

Collect Unusual Items

Add unusual items, as an antique door handle repurposed as a towel rack. Look for eye-catching plates and kitchen items at thrift stores, and add them to the room as decorative pieces. That 30s-era coffee maker that doesn’t work can still be a beautiful accent in a vintage-style kitchen. Use paint to make used items look new, and color them to match your new room design.

You don’t need to remodel your entire kitchen to create a new, big look. You just need a few items and your creativity.