Vintage Eclectic Kitchen on a Budget

by Tim Layton on March 27, 2014 Google+

in Kitchens

I’ve been wanting to remodel the kitchen in our house for a few years now. I haven’t started yet for good reason…not enough money to finish the job! I can’t do just part of it. Kitchen’s are often all-or-nothing kind of remodels. As Master Yoda said, “When remodel kitchen you must, do or do not do… there is no try.”

So we’ve held our horses for a few years now, but the day when sledge hammer meets decrepit broken down cabinet is fast approaching. The budget is still tight, but there finally is one. It just might be enough if we watch the spending and take advantage of some of the steals & deals you can find if you really do your homework.

Inspiration Image found on Pinterest and originally from:

To my great surprise, my tastes have changed since I first proclaimed the kitchen that would one day be mine back in 09. Now I’m kind of glad we didn’t have the budget at the time. I’m not sure I could have handled that high color look for long. Some mornings you’re just not in the zone for all that.

Vintage Eclectic — With a Splash of Color

I’ve always been a suspicious fan of the pure eclectic look. It always looked fun, in a blindfolded bungee jumping sort of way, but I’ve never been brave enough to really go for it. My feelings for the pure vintage look are much the same. I like it, but how much vintage can we really mix-in without things just seeming, er, vintage. Downton Abbey has helped.

Enter “Vintage Eclectic”, a style that combines the two and allows for a fun kitschy look without going full-on hoarder or “what would grandma do?”

5 Design Elements For My New Kitchen

Open Shelves

Part of the eclectic look is the idea of having your stuff “out there” where you can see it. That works perfectly with my budgetary constraints because open shelves are much less costly than enclosed cabinets.

Some Soft Colors

While I may have backed off from the colorbomb of a kitchen I had my heart set-on back in the day, we’ll still want to include some light touches of color such as this soft yellow open shelving unit from Sauder and maybe a subdued tile on the backsplash walls.

A Mix of Surfaces

I prefer a kitchen that doesn’t look like it was designed for a model home just last week. By that I mean kitchens where every counter is the same granite or every cabinet door the exact same finish. A mix of surfaces, such as using one counter on the main cabinets and a different surface on the island cabinet makes things look more real and inviting. IMHO.

Vintage Look Hardware & Fixtures

One of my most favorite things in all the world is the vintage looking filament light-bulbs. I’ll get some fixtures that feature really cool bulbs and let the rest flow out from there. I think a cool vintagey toaster would be nice too. This light fixture is from Restoration Hardware.

DIY Components

The possibilities of what you can actually make/assemble yourself nowadays is vastly increased. An email from Sauder, the company that invented Ready-to-Assemble furniture and made some of the first furniture I ever owned as an adult, opened my eyes to just how much furniture you can find and how much money you can save by assembling it yourself. I read that they put six new designs out every week! You can get some great ideas and inspiration at Sauder’s Pinterest Page.

You Do Need a Budget But it Need Not Be Ginormous

​The bottom line, which I hope to prove very soon is that you can get a beautiful new kitchen on a tight budget by taking advantage of some of the lower cost but better looking products and getting creative with a mix of older/found items and newer parts mixed in.

I wonder how low can you go? If you’ve got a low-budget kitchen remodel to share, please let me know. I need all the inspiration I can get!

~ Tim

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Sauder Woodworking. The opinions and text are all mine.


Never miss a post:

Enter your email address:

20 Small Space Storage Ideas

by Tim Layton on February 6, 2014 Google+

in Design,Small Spaces


Here’s one thing I know for sure… no matter how big your house is, you need more storage! People have an uncanny knack for filling whatever space they have available. If you do live in a small house (mine is a little cottage by the water at a cozy 1000 square feet) you really need more storage!  I’ve collected a group of ideas and links below that might offer you some glimpse of hope or a dose of inspiration!

Read the full article…

Remodeling Market Steady at Ten Year High

When I first started in early 2009, the economy was pretty stinky to say the least. Remodeling contractors everywhere were shutting their doors or cutting way back on staff. The direction went toward smaller houses, simpler (cheaper) projects, and more DIY home improvements. A licensed contractor in Florida from the ripe young age of […]

Read the full article →

Use MDF to Create Living Spaces as Art

Thumbnail image for Use MDF to Create Living Spaces as Art

I ran across this picture, along with quite a few more awesome kid’s rooms at a cool Australian community site here. I’ve always been a fan of really cool themed kids rooms, so I naturally took a moment to look at what was going on in this room and it just reminded me how creative […]

Read the full article →

Pantone Color of The Year — It’s Happening Already!

Thumbnail image for Pantone Color of The Year — It’s Happening Already!

It’s happening just as I feared it would.  And much faster than I expected. Just today I wrote a post expressing my chagrin at the chosen Pantone Color of the Year, Radiant Orchid. Not only was I just not happy with the color, I was also very concerned that the global marketing machine would cause […]

Read the full article →

Color of The Year 2014 — They Must Have Misplaced My Vote

Thumbnail image for Color of The Year 2014 — They Must Have Misplaced My Vote

Amidst breathtaking anticipation, Pantone has announced this year’s winner of the coveted Color of The Year award.  Each year aspiring colors from around the globe train for months with tireless dedication reaching to the black depths of their limits in an all out effort to be the champion. But only one can win. And oh […]

Read the full article →

5 Reasons Pro Electricians Depend on The Home Depot

Thumbnail image for 5 Reasons Pro Electricians Depend on The Home Depot

The average consumer thinks of The Home Depot as “their store” for all things remodeling and home improvement.  Most people probably don’t think of it as much of a “professional” supply house.  Pros know different. The Home Depot is, in fact, one of the best sources for professionals to buy materials, supplies, and tools. For many […]

Read the full article →

Affordable and Easy Doorbell Video from VTech

I’ve installed many a new front door in my time on houses of every size and style and all across the budget range.  In the process of selecting every one of those doors, one question always comes up… “glass or no glass?” People like doors with glass in them not only for the natural light, […]

Read the full article →

5 Green Building Ideas You Can Use

Thumbnail image for 5 Green Building Ideas You Can Use

5 Green Building Ideas You Can Use  (from the Net-Zero Energy House of the Future!) Have you ever heard the term “Net-Zero Energy House”?  If you have and you know what it means then I probably already have your interest.  But if you don’t know that term, let me explain it in the way that […]

Read the full article →

Ryobi One 18V Cordless Drill Price Drops

I was reading my favorite remodeling blog this morning and noticed a Home Depot ad at the top of the screen. Maybe all I need to say is that the ad was so compelling I took a screenshot: I could leave it at that, I suppose. But that would be far too few words for […]

Read the full article →

How to Light A Whole Village Using a Mirror or Two

Thumbnail image for How to Light A Whole Village Using a Mirror or Two

I’m a huge fan of innovative uses of solar energy. I’ve always been fascinated by the possibilities that come with any 100% renewable resource and solar represents one of the most promising opportunities out there. In a recent article for, I wrote about a creative soul who figured out a way to use a […]

Read the full article →

Incredible Timberland PRO Boots — Oh, And Phase Two of The Deck Repairs

Thumbnail image for Incredible Timberland PRO Boots — Oh, And Phase Two of The Deck Repairs

I guess it’s no secret that footwear can be exciting. Kim (my lovely wife) has been aware of this fact for years.  And I’m not going to say I’ve never had a new pair of shoes or boots that got my blood pumping a little bit before, but I will say I’ve never had a […]

Read the full article →

Hexagon Tiles for Green Wall Finishing

I came across the video below a month or so back and I’ve been thinking about it ever since. This wall tile is made of a combination of cement and ground up “wood wool” whatever that is. The video is pretty interesting to watch and the idea of a cool looking hexagon wall tile seems […]

Read the full article →

One Month of Wearing Dickies “Work Clothes”

Thumbnail image for One Month of Wearing Dickies “Work Clothes”

I’ve had an interesting month or two in the area of “work attire”.  Various connections made through blogging have landed a couple of “try em and see if you like em” boxes on my front porch.  I have an awesome pair of heavy duty workboots from Timberland that are apparently top-secret for awhile longer, and […]

Read the full article →
Use of this site constitutes agreement with the SAFETY DISCLAIMER!, Privacy Policy