Have you fallen out of love with your current rented kitchen? In this post, I’m sharing an easy rental kitchen update – how to create open plan shelving from existing cabinets.
** This post has been sponsored by Argos Home and may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure page here
Renting has its perks.
However, bathrooms and kitchens are rarely ever included in that ‘perks package’ You either get a great kitchen or bathroom – or you dont. It’s just one of those things you learn to accept when you rent- especially if the rest of the house happens to be in good condition. . . and if your landlord isn’t half bad.
Whilst you can’t make any drastic changes to a rented kitchen (as most of it will have been built in before your arrival), you can customise it somewhat. And often you can do so, in a way that doesn’t cost you your security deposit at the end of your tenancy (music to any renters ears right?)
Small changes, big impact – and all that.
After living with my mediocre kitchen for over 3 years, a few weeks ago I finally decided it was time to put that thought process into practice. I mean, as far as kitchens go, mine wasn’t that bad. It was just so very basic . . and so very not me. And more than anything I craved a kitchen that felt like me.
Here is a peek of it from my dining room (which is a space that IS me) .
Winter is coming (anyone else read that and think of Jon Snow?). To be honest, it’s kind of unofficially here already. Since the colder weather usually meant I’d be spending a lot more time indoors, it was especially important that I liked how the inside of my home looked – in particular the kitchen.
PART 1 OF RENTAL KITCHEN UPDATE: OPEN PLAN SHELVING
The idea was to go with an open plan look for the top cabinets that I hoped would brighten and lift the flow of the room, you know, like I mention in my book. But of course, as I rent, I wasn’t about to rip everything out and install wall shelves. So I had to figure out a way achieve that concept using the existing cabinets.
Now, I’m not a naturally tidy person
And trust me, it’s taken me a long time to finally admit that to myself (being married to an incredibly organised person for 9 years might have had a hand with helping that realisation along) You see, my husband will put things back after he has used them without a moments hesitation. I on the other hand, will take things out, and make a note to put it back later.
Except ‘later’, sometimes ends up being ‘never’. And things start to build up. Like really build up. Then I get overwhelmed, I do a major clean and vow to be more tidier, more organised, more everything, and then it starts again.
There is a clause to this cycle of mine though. And that is design. There are times when I manage to keep things tidy for the sake of keeping up a good design. . and this recent kitchen update is a good example of that.
HOW TO CREATE OPEN SHELVING FROM EXISTING CABINETS
WATCH MY VIDEO TO SEE THE PROGRESS IN REAL TIME!
Step one: Remove the doors from the top cabinets.
And store them somewhere safe – screws included. Simple. Or at least I had hoped it would be. Which brings me to . . . .
Step two: Asses the ‘damage’
Once the doors were removed, I noticed that the inside of the cabinets didn’t look great. They were stained, and had a yellowish tinge to them. I decided to paint them white. I wont go into too much detail about this part , as I’ve already walked through the process of painting melamine or laminate in a previous tutorial.
Important to note here that you will need to get permission from your before you start any type of painting in your rental.
There were also holes where the doors had been. If you dont plan to put the doors back on, you can fill the holes in with white wood filler. Here is a great article on how to repair wood.
Step three: Add a striking feature!
Painting the insides a bold colour was an option (I had done similar to the shelves in my living room). However, I wanted something a little less permanent so chose to apply the magical stuff I’m always raving about instead.
Yes. Removable wallpaper. The paper you can apply and remove at your leisure. Its pretty awesome. Here is where I bought mine from.
Step four: Declutter and display
This is where Argos Home comes in.
They are usually my go to place for stylish homeware items at affordable prices. Their same day delivery Fast Track feature isn’t bad either, but I digress.
Here are a few items that I selected from Argos Home that I felt would add some style and colour to the shelves.
- Ribbed Glass jars Canisters in various sizes
My top cabinets housed a lot of dried food like pasta, herbs, powders, etc so putting them in to containers like this has really helped to streamline everything.
I used the larger jars for pasta and rice, and the smaller jars to store coffee , tea etc. These jars have an air tight seal on them and a gorgeous wooden lid to match! And of course I labelled everything with my new label maker!
- A chrome rail with hooks attached to the underside of the cupboards.
I spray painted this brass! This rail was used to hang mugs and other utensils with the aim of keeping the countertops a little less cluttered. You might need permission from your landlord for this step, as you’ll be screwing into the wood. Alternatively you can use adhesive hooks.
A lot of the dish-ware in my cabinets were either mismatched or chipped. It worked, when you couldn’t see them. But now that everything is on show – things needed to look a little more cohesive.
These mustard yellow plates and bowls are the perfect addition to my new open shelving.
A large portion of my kitchen wall consists of tiles so I hung these cloths using self adhesive hooks (that I spray painted brass) .
A few other updates to this rental kitchen included :
- Replacing the silver handles with these black modern ones
- Hanging some art on the wall
- Buying a new toaster!
- Adding a warm rug to the floor
Let me know what you think of this update?
I’ll be sharing more of my rental kitchen update on my instagram stories! There’s still quite a few things that need to be done
- Change flooring
- Change bottom cabinet doors
- Re-caulk the counter tops
- Paint the walls
- Change the lighting
- Add in more storage for spices ie. Locker perhaps?
- Add curtains/blinds
***This post was sponsored by Argos home. I received products and payment for my time creating this post. I only partner with brands I LOVE and think you will LOVE too! All ideas, photos and opinions are 100% my own.