Help Me Paint My Kitchen!

Don’t worry, I’m not asking you to do any manual labor….

Over the last 8 years we’ve done significant work on every room in the house except our kitchen.  We plan on remodeling it, but that realistically isn’t going to happen for probably 10-15 years.  The kitchen was by far the most agreeable as far as color palette and functionality, so we were in no rush to do anything to it.  My husband has repainted the ceiling, turned the coat closet into a walk-in pantry, and installed a dishwasher – that’s about all that’s been done.

About a month or two ago I was moving something and hit the bottom of one of the drawers next to the fridge and took out a chunk of the veneer on the drawer face.  I decided then I’m sick of how the kitchen looks we need to do something to it in the interim. If you look closely, some of the veneer on the cabinets is starting to get worn and chipped, and the stuff in front of the sink has some water damage.  Nothing is bad, it all just needs some freshening up.

We don’t want to invest much, so a few coats of paint with new handles and hinges on the cabinets is all we’re looking to do at this point.  However, I’m probably the most indecisive person on the planet, and coupled with the fact that I’m not the kind of person who can envision what the final product will look like, I’m in need of ideas.

Many of these photos are from way back in the archives… these are photos we took back when we first toured the house and right after we moved in.  Without all the clutter you’ll hopefully get an idea of the project we’re looking to do.




We no longer have that stove.  I’m not sure if it matters, but this is our current stove:


The only thing I’m sure of is that the windowsills are going to get painted white – the same white that is on almost every other windowsill in the house.  We’re also going to take this opportunity to remove the scallops over the windows.  The countertop is going to stay.  I don’t love it, but I also don’t love the idea of spending money to replace it.  It’s in good condition, so it’ll do for now.

My primary objective is to paint the cabinets and backsplash.  I know, who would want to paint that lovely backsplash!?!?  News flash, that’s not real brick.  I don’t plan on taking off the faux brick (because quite frankly, I don’t want to know what’s behind it), but I think it might look interesting painted.  But what color?!?!

Here is the third wall of the kitchen.  The fourth wall is the same as this one.  This wallpaper is by far the least objectionable wallpaper we had…

100_1924.jpg(Pardon the mess, we were literally moving in when this picture was taken)


I have nothing against it, and if it works with the new paint colors that we choose I have no problems with leaving it.  I’m also indifferent about the wainscoting.  We could take it off, we could paint it, or we could leave it alone.  I don’t love it, but it’s easy to clean.

When I’m describing the wallpaper as “the least objectionable,” I can’t help but take a moment here to revisit all the wallpapers that are no longer with us…

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Weren’t they wonderful?  We’ve scraped all that wallpaper off and those walls have all been repainted.  The fireplace was taken out, the paneling taken off, and that whole wall was refinished too.

So, if you have a better eye for design than I have, I’m looking for ideas for the kitchen cabinets and backsplash.  Those are the top priority.  I’ll also entertain any ideas for the wallpapered walls and the wainscoting.  We’re not afraid of color, but would prefer something that if we ever did move we wouldn’t completely alienate a potential buyer.

My sister-in-law quickly vetoed my idea of painting the cabinet doors one color and the frame another.  Probably for the better… it would show off how uneven my cabinet doors are…

What fresh, exciting ideas do you have for me?



15 thoughts on “Help Me Paint My Kitchen!

  1. We have enjoyed yellow in our kitchens over the years. Bright and cheery. Shermin- Williams has a new 2017 paint line that has some nice pallets you might want to check. It’s a big project. Have fun with it!!!


  2. I am thinking white cupboards with a matching back splash and walls. There is also filler you can put over the wainscoting if you decide you don’t want that anymore.


  3. If you want to seriously freshen up the room and feel cheerful, I’d suggest a light butter yellow for the walls and a shade of pure white for the cabinetry. Put on some really pretty handles or knobs on all the cabinet doors to bring it into the 21st century. White cabs also make the space look bigger and tie into the windowsills throughout the house. Butter yellow (get the sherwin-williams one coat paint and save yourself a LOT of time) is soothing to the eye and it is neither too feminine nor is it masculine. It also accents almost every other color you can imagine.


      • no it wouldn’t be wierd. It would be pretty. the main thing to remember when painting each room a different color is to take the main color of a room and use it as an accent color in a room that directly connects to it. So if you have a cream room and the one next to it is a blue, use the cream as an accent in the blue room and the blue as an accent in the cream room. It ties it all together and is pleasing to the eye instead of jarring.


  4. white cabinets-maybe red-true brick red for the backsplash-I did this with a williamsburg red and painted the grout white-fine if some of the gray shows thru in spots. Looks real and is not hard as you think. wainescting white with red walls-or whatever color-I love white everywhere-I will tell you red is a hard color to get even, I don’t know why-it will take 3 coats but is beautiful if you get the right shade. good luck! post whatever you decide-I LOVE make overs-and good thing as the rabbit patch needed it, too!


  5. I am having the same dilemma in our kitchen. I want to distress my cabinet and use teal but that is not for everyone. We live in a cabin on the lake so I can get away with it. My advice to myself was to start with the smallest project and go from there. I agree with a nice shade of white for the cabinets with updated hardware. For the wall-definitely add some color, it just makes for a cheerful space. If it were me I would not touch the brick (I would be afraid that the paint would chip when cleaning it). You have a nice space to work in-wish my kitchen was that big. Benjamin Moore has an interactive space on their website where you can upload your photos and test colors. I’m sure other companies do as well. I have yet to tackle ours-saving it for a wintertime project. Good luck-keep us all updated. 🙂


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