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Easy Kitchen Updates That Make a Big Impact

The average kitchen remodel comes in at a whopping $18,856, with high-end remodels averaging $54,909. “That's a whole lotta cash,” says Lisa Freedman, Good Housekeeping. “But you don't need to shell out big bucks to make a big impact in an outdated kitchen.”

The average kitchen remodel comes in at a whopping $18,856, with high-end remodels averaging $54,909.

“That’s a whole lotta cash,” says Lisa Freedman, Good Housekeeping. “But you don’t need to shell out big bucks to make a big impact in an outdated kitchen.”

Simple Kitchen Remodeling

The National Kitchen and Bath Association recommends homeowners spend at least six months planning their kitchen remodel. But in the immortal words of Kimberly “Sweet Brown” Wilkins, “Ain’t nobody got time for that!” You need quick and affordable ways to make a big impact. You don’t have six months to spend updating your kitchen. We’ve got you covered.

Here are our top choices for easy kitchen updates that make a big impact.

New Window Treatments

New blinds, shades, or shutters can “really spruce up a space,” says Freedman, “but think twice about the type of treatment you hang on the window above your sink.”  The kitchen is a messy place. It’s the “hardest-working room in your home,” says Lauren West, HGTV, “so you’ll need durable kitchen window treatments and window coverings that can stand up to potential heat and moisture while still giving you the style and functionality you need.”  Fortunately, you have several options.

Faux Wood Blinds

While wood blinds may not be the best fit for such a high-moisture, high-humidity area, Faux Wood Blinds can stand up to such harsh environments and still look great. Made from 100 percent vinyl, these window treatments provide the “elegant look of real wood with more durability,” says Katie Christopher, Houzz contributor. Plus, “[faux wood] can be substantially less expensive [than real wood], and it’s not as susceptible to moisture issues, which makes it a great choice for bathrooms, kitchens and clammy climates,” adds Becky Dietrich, another Houzz contributor.

Vinyl Shutters

Similar to our above recommendation, Vinyl Shutters are able to withstand the wear and tear of the kitchen. “Using shutters is a low-maintenance alternative to drapery that still controls light levels and views,” says interior designer Karen Sealy. These window treatments look great, and they are easy to clean – perfect for spills, splatters, and other kitchen-related messes.

Honeycomb Shades

“Whether you are fortunate to have a large sprawling kitchen that has plenty of options for lighting, or your kitchen seems too dark to feel comfortable, you may want to consider letting in some natural light,” writes Ronique Gibson, Decoist. Honeycomb Shades can do all that and more! Both aesthetically pleasing and incredibly energy efficient, top down/bottom up Honeycomb Shades are a great way to balance natural light and privacy.

Wood Blinds & Woven Wood Shades

However, if the windows are set away from some of more mess-inducing areas of the kitchen, any window treatment would work! For example, we love of the organic textures of Wood Blinds and Woven Wood Shades pair with the cooler tones found in most kitchen appliances and finishes.


Cabinet Updates

Your cabinets are some of the most visible components of your kitchen. They are also one of the first areas that can begin to look dates. However, think twice before ripping out those old cabinets for something new and flashy. A few simple updates could be all you need to give your cabinets a facelift.

  • New Handles and Pulls: “Changing out cabinetry hardware is one of the easiest and quickest updates,” says HGTV’s Scott McGillivray, author of How to Add Value to Your Home. Swapping out your old handles for something a bit more trendy could be all you need to really liven up your kitchen and bring it into the new year.
  • New Paint: A can of fresh paint will run you around $30. Doesn’t sound a lot better than paying for new cabinets? Your wallet will thank us, and your guests will still be wowed.
  • Cabinet Doors: If neither of the above options are in the cards, swapping out the cabinet doors could be a cost-effective way to update your cabinets without much demolition.

bathroom fresh coat of paint

Working the Walls

When it comes to your kitchen walls, you have a few options as well. For starters, an accent wall can give your room a more designer look and feel. “Go darker than you usually would,” says McGillivray. “If I’m painting a room light gray, I’d add an accent wall that’s two shades deeper.” Another option would be adding a backsplash.

“The beauty of it is that it’s very limited in square footage,” says McGillivray. “The average backsplash is between 10 and 40 square feet.” So, again, instead of reworking each and every wall, you can make a big impact while working in a significantly smaller area.

Overhead Updates

If you want to put your kitchen over the top, consider one or two of these overhead updates.

  • Pot Rack: “Save cabinet space by hanging cookware overhead,” says Amy R. Hughes, This Old House. This not only helps free up cabinet space, but also makes a statement.
  • Lighting: Your kitchen is one room where you can never have too much lighting. Consider adding task lighting under cabinets, and, if you decide against the pot rack, you can “put pendants above the kitchen island,” says Hughes. “They’re classier than track lighting or recessed cans, and can cost less, too.”

Founded in 1993, Next Day Blinds is a fully integrated, full-service custom window covering company located in Jessup, MD, just 25 miles from Washington, DC, and 15 miles from Baltimore, MD. From sales and design to manufacturing, measuring, installation, and service, we do it all. Our goal is to help you create a better tomorrow by providing a superior result--blinds, shades and shutters that look nicer, last longer, and are there when you want them.