12 Ways to Revamp Your Kitchen Cabinets for the Ultimate Makeover


Marisa Vitale

Your kitchen is the hub of your home, and you likely spend a good amount of time in it. It's where you cook, gather, and a space you want to feel proud of. Perhaps you're thinking of doing a full-on kitchen renovation to really bring your space to the next level, but remodels are expensive. Maybe you're not ready to invest that much money into your kitchen, but you do want to do a refresh that will make a big visual impact.

Start with your kitchen cabinets. Old, outdated cabinets can really dampen the vibe in a kitchen, and simply repainting them or switching out the hardware is a simple way to upgrade your space.

Read on for 12 ways to revamp your kitchen cabinets for the ultimate kitchen upgrade.

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Go Bold

kitchen cabinets

Ginger Hearts

Go bold—we are giving you permission. Bold kitchen cabinet colors always come as an unexpected yet very welcome surprise. If you're leaning toward repainting your cabinets a bold color such as a navy blue or deep emerald, we say go for it.

If you're concerned that it might be too much for your space to have a bold color on both your upper and lower cabinets, go bold just on the lower ones, as Amy of Ginger Hearts did.

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Try White and Bright

Studio KT

Studio KT

You can never go wrong with white kitchen cabinets. They're light, fresh, airy, and will make your space seem bigger and brighter. Isn't that what we all hope for in our kitchens? Opting to repaint your kitchen cabinets white is a classic choice, and if you're looking for an easy, fresh upgrade, this is it.

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Add Washi Tape

washi tape

Marisa Vitale

Not ready to paint your kitchen cabinets or just looking for a rental-friendly option? Try washi tape. Salvatore and Amina have an amazingly colorful apartment in L.A. full of creative DIY's, such as covering your kitchen cabinets in washi tape. They used 50 rolls of tape in total and eight washi tape sheets for their appliances.

This rental-friendly color upgrade took about 12 hours to complete, and the process is documented here.

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Go Neutral


Whittney Parkinson

White kitchen cabinets are always a sure choice, but perhaps you're worried about how much dirt they'll show. Bold cabinet colors are a fun way to show off your personality, but maybe you'd rather use bold accents somewhere else in your space. You don't feel like doing anything exceptionally crafty, you just want a cabinet refresh that will last for a long time.

Consider going neutral. Neutral cabinet colors such as beige or light gray still give the calming, light effect of white cabinets without being quite so bright, and they'll be able to blend with your other kitchen accents and trends as they evolve through the years.

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Or Opt for a Mix


Marisa Vitale

Can't decide? Don't be afraid to mix your colors. Mixing cabinet colors with the traditional white on the upper cabinets and a more fun color option on the lower cabinets add some interest to your space without making too big of a splash.

Opting for a neutral or calming pastel on the lower cabinets keeps the vibes calm while going for a bolder, darker color makes more of a statement.

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Embrace Bare Bones Beauty


House on Heatherfield

While repainting your kitchen cabinets is a go-to refresh, the not-so-obvious option is to strip away all those layers of trendy paint colors and reveal your cabinet wood's natural beauty. Stripping away paint colors with layers of Citristrip might not be your idea of a fun afternoon, but the final result is swoon-worthy and authentic.

Even if you don't refurbish all your cabinets, picking one to serve as a small island or shelf-like Sharon of House on Heatherfield did—can spruce up the look of your kitchen and bring in some natural elements.

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Switch Out Your Hardware


Whittney Parkinson

Adding new hardware to your cabinets is an easy way to take your cabinets from blah to stunning. Even if you don't want to spend the time or money getting new cabinets or repainting, just switching out the hardware is going to make a huge visual difference.

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Add Leather Pulls


Lisa Clark Design

Changing out the hardware on your cabinets and drawers is a quick, easy refresh. Why not take it a step further and swap them with an interesting material, such as leather? These leather handles showcased by Lisa Clark Design add some "wow factor" to her drawers while also remaining highly functional.

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Opt for Open Shelving

diy kitchen

Almost Makes Perfect

When Molly Madfis of Almost Makes Perfect moved into her place, there were a lot of things she didn't like about her kitchen. And one was the dark, dilapidated cabinets. Instead of repainting them, she totally ripped them out and put up open shelving instead.

By painting the walls white and sticking with a calming, neutral palette throughout the space, the final product shows you don't have to have upper cabinets at all for a beautiful, thoughtful kitchen makeover.

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Mix Traditional Cabinets and Open Shelving

open mix

Reena Sotropa

Don't know if you want to repaint your cabinets or just rip them all out and install open shelving? Why not try a mix? Choosing to mix open shelving with traditional cabinets is not only visually pleasing, but it takes the pressure off of your future #shelfie.

Display your favorite dishware, glasses, and plants on your open shelves while reserving the cabinets for food, storage containers, utensils, and all the other kitchen items that you don't want to have in plain view.

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DIY Glass Cabinet Doors

glass door

Tara Kantor Interiors

Like the look of open shelving, but your space isn't conducive to it? Or perhaps you love your cabinets, but you'd just like to show off some of your favorite dishes and ceramics, too? Can you do both?

Yes. With a glass cabinet door, you can tuck your items safely behind a door and still show them off. If you are DIYing this and cutting glass is an issue, you can even opt for plexiglass, as Christy of Confessions of a Serial DIYer shows in her tutorial.

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Build Cabinets Out of Plywood

DIY kitchen cabinet

Woodshop Diaries

Perhaps you're looking for more than just a paint refresh or hardware switch. Maybe you hate your kitchen cabinets so much you'd rather just start anew, and you have too many things for open shelving: you want cabinets.

Shara of Woodshop Diaries built her own kitchen cabinets out of plywood and swears that it's not as daunting as it sounds. She shows her full process here.

You don't have to do a full kitchen renovation to upgrade your space. Repaint your kitchen cabinets a fun, bold color or classic white. Switch out the hardware. Get creative and add strips of Washi tape, or create your own custom glass doors to your cabinets. The options are limitless if you're willing to put in a little bit of elbow grease—and the payoff will definitely be worth it.