before and after: creative kitchen redo

We’ve featured a couple of Sibylle Roessler’s Before & After projects before; her dining room was a huge hit back in August, and her airy, curated bedroom makeover was equally popular. For these rooms, Sibylle has employed a pretty simple but highly effective method of creating big change while keeping costs to a minimum. She brightens things up with a lovely coat of fresh white paint, layers in touches of black and wood for an elegant contrast, then finishes with pops of bright color and fun repurposed vintage accessories.

Her kitchen makeover today is another great example of this technique, and I think the results are lovely. I particularly love the twig wall unit for her rolling pin and the planter made from an old meat grinder. A little bird told me that Sibylle might me moving soon, and I can’t wait to see what creative solutions she’ll employ in her next abode. Awesome job, Sibylle! — Kate

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Read more about Sibylle’s kitchen redo after the jump!

Time: about one month (one day of painting)

Cost: $0 (The landlord provided the paint. All other items on hand.)

Basic Steps: We had an ugly fridge, and I painted it with chalk paint. Now it serves as our sketch board/calendar/notebook. I once purchased this vintage meat grinder and decided to use it as a flower pot (I have a chili growing in there). Next to it is a mirror, which I also painted with chalk paint. I made my own spice rack — just screwed the jar lids to a shelf and screwed the jars onto it. Due to the small space, I hang a metal wire basket upside down and use it as a holder for all my big spoons, scissors, etc. I love simple and clean, so I kept everything kind of black and white. Hardwood floors help warm up the room.

Here’s the advice I always give: Don’t throw anything away; rather, repurpose it (if you have the time!) and go to flea markets and thrift stores to score a good deal! Reinterpreting flea-market finds is not only green, it can also be terribly charming and what’s old can be new, and 2011 is the year to prove it; –) Living in a small space forces you to prioritize. Having only what you love, need and use simplifies things, is more economical, and leaves time and money for fun! — Sibylle

  1. amy says:

    this is beautiful. clean and functional. i love it.

  2. Can I live here please? :)

  3. i totally love this kitchen. so many lamazing little details that make it outstanding and special. i just pinned it ;-)

  4. suncica says:

    so inspiring…

  5. sibylle says:

    @Natasha: Yes, we are renting it out as of today;-)

  6. Amazing that this cost $0.!! I love those shiny wood floors and the brightness of the room. Very homely and inviting…..

  7. Crystal says:

    I have a fridge I’d love to paint! Did she use any special techniques, like a metal paint or primer or anything?

  8. amazing transformation for no money! that’s a kitchen to be proud of.

  9. I absolutely adore this kitchen. Gorgeous mix of accessories, colour and materials.

  10. Katie says:

    I’m in love with that little spice shelf! Actually, I’m in love with everything. But especially that :)

  11. Wow! Such a fun kitchen. I love the details. Great work!!

  12. Wow! What a contrast! I love the use of the blackboards to create interesting, changeable art. So clever.

  13. Nicole says:

    Adorable, love it! Wonderful job. Such an inviting, fun space.

  14. Kasey M. says:

    Are those counter tops blue? They look like they’ve got a navy hue in that after picture. Can we see a close up?

    Love your use of chaulk board paint. I’m so worried that it’s getting used so frequently and I might get sick of it soon. But let’s be honest, it’s not even close to happening!

  15. sibylle says:

    I just painted it with chalk paint, no primer

  16. Michelle H says:

    very nice!

  17. sarah says:

    i think its a little too much chalk board paint in one place IMHO

  18. LOVE this! Love, love, love it! Everything about it!

    I’ve been trying to talk my sister into painting her refrigerator like this (it’s the only horrifically dated appliance left in her kitchen). I’m emailing this to her!

    Thanks for sharing!

  19. pps says:

    i love what she has done, but i always wonder – is chalkboard everywhere messy and dusty?

  20. Chelsea says:

    Suggestion for those who rent: I did the chalkboard paint idea for my fridge, only I first painted the chalkboard paint on contact paper and then applied the paper to the fridge. That way, when you leave, all you have to do is peel the contact paper off!

    My brother first adhered the contact paper then painted and I learned from him that it goes through the paper and leaves a mess on the fridge.

  21. brittany says:

    I really like this. It is so nice and bright. I would love to bake something in that kitchen!

  22. Kathleen says:

    This is one of the most creative kitchen ideas I’ve ever seen! I absolutely love the chalkboard fridge! I also think that the idea for chalkboard paint on contact paper for renters is brilliant, I sooo want to try that, thanks!

  23. Katie says:

    This is WONDERFUL! This makes me so excited to help my in-laws with their little kitchen. I have SO many ideas now! thanks!

  24. winlove says:

    amazingly simple and great!only an artistic fun mind can perceive and open minds receive with open arms and drooling lips (sorry) i did. :-p

  25. Heather says:

    love the rolling pin thing…

  26. Libby says:

    I absolutely LOVE the chalkboard fridge idea. What a fantastic, simple update to an ugly but functional fridge.

    @ Chelsea, great idea for renters!! Did you do enough contact paper to cover the whole fridge, or did you just make a mini chalkboard area on the fridge?

  27. kellilu says:

    What a fun space! I love that it’s down-to-earth, warm and welcoming yet full of clever details and re-imaginings. Thanks for sharing!

  28. Kerry says:

    Certainly a perky and cheery update, but I agree with Sarah, the chalkboard paint would be best featured on the refrigerator (concealing its ugliness, artfully) rather than spreading to so many other surfaces.

  29. katya says:

    I love the transformation. Especially the chalkboard fridge, brilliant! How is the paint holding up and did you use a primer first?

  30. Erica W. says:

    I love $0 makeovers. Anybody can do something fab with lots of money, but the freegan version is the best.

  31. Josephine says:

    Love it! Can’t seem to see the first two thumbnails enlarged though. Tech glitch?

  32. Hannah says:

    Amazing what a difference a bit of paint and a few blackboards can make. I really like the plant growing out of the meat grinder as well.

  33. Wall Unit says:

    I like the table that says EAT! Don’t have to tell me twice :)

  34. Kirsten Maxx says:

    Amazing transformation! I love looking at those pictures and looking through the details. I can’t believe how you could be trendy yet organize at the same time (as seen in the latter picture). Overall, it looks clean and fresh! Great job! Kudos!

  35. Chelsea says:

    @ Libby: I covered the entire fridge with the painted contact paper. It looks pretty seamless, just make sure you smooth out air bubbles. Also, I painted more contact paper than I needed just to ensure to cover everything with as few seams as possible. Good luck!

  36. Anda Panda says:

    I just discovered that black gesso works just like black chalkboard paint! Its often cheaper too!

  37. veronica pineda says:

    Need. Help my kitchen. Is very small…don’t. Know. How I can seand. A picture…. thank you hope you can help. Me


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