DIY-Budget Kitchen makeover , review & Tile Mountain giveaway
Hi Guys !
I apologize in advance for the length of this post but even tho i tried to keep things to the bare minimum it will still be long as i have included my guide to tiling- so grab your tea or coffee - or gin for that matter and sit yourself down x
I recently posted on Instagram my "new-old" kitchen makeover which received a lot of positive feedback which made me extremely grateful for such an amazing insta community .
As most of you know my little council kitchen was never posted before - due to the fact that i didn't find it insta worthy - i dint like cooking in it or simply being in it - I need to add here that we are extremely grateful for a roof under our heads - and this is also why i am doing everything i can to keep the place in a tip top condition.
Our kitchen was rather dated , i have updated it with black tiles and lino flooring 10 years ago as cream tiles and green lino did not go , but i didn't want to do anything to the doors without getting a permission first , there were few options i could do to the existing doors which i will explain in details later for those of you who do not want to change the doors but on the end i opted for changing the style of the doors .
Finding a bargain takes some time - so i started my search last year in order to purchase items that i wanted to change at the best price available , then i watched few tutorials on how to do ceratin things and decided to do all the work myself -to save money and allow me to "have a kitchen earlier" - if you are handy with a drill then there is nothing stopping you -You just have to have a little faith in yourself. (For those wondering why my husband didn't do it for me - my husband is disabled so all DIY around the house falls on me ) - All in all after selling worktops and doors off - i have spent £650 for the whole lot! (tiles and doors included in the total )
How i done it
I am not the one for making big plans , or mood boards simply because i am known for changing my mind the last moment - so i just improvised as i went along .I knew one thing- i wanted a industrial -rustic and eclectic kitchen within my budget .
It all started with white metro tiles that were free ... Tesco clubcard used to have a promotion where you can tipple your points and get tiles ! - i "bought" them last year and they were living under my sofa while i saved up for the rest of the items
Then i found those amazing wood effect tiles from Tile Mountain Rural range that were also cheap !!! (£12.99 a square meter !) - compared to other companies Tile Mountain range offered a fantastic value for money with a lot of tile options as well as fantastic customer support and a lot of How to videos - be sure to check them out as they cover everything from tiling to drilling into a tile.
Another handy feature Tile Mountain offers is " Tile visualizer" where you can view your choice of tiles in example bathrooms and kitchens
I was a little worried that quality will reflect the price but surprisingly when they arrived i was blown away by them!! - the wood effect as well as grain is just beautiful , they are non slip thanks to groves on the tile. Tile mountain also carry a range of tile accessories , as well as adhesives and grout so you could have everything delivered to your door by the click of a button , if you have any questions - team is friendly and knowledgeable . Delivery was free if you spend over £150 unlike many other companies - saving you money in the long run . If i haven't had my tiling tools and accessories needed to do the kitchen already at home i would purchase everything at TM
When i finished laying tiles they fooled quite a lot of people - they couldn't believe that their aren't wood - unless you touch them you cant tell the difference.!
Time passed and wickes had an offer for wood effect laminate worktops - i jumped straight in.
In an ideal world id love to have a real wood worktops but i couldn't afford them- not i could fit a worktop with a butt and scribble method as i am not a carpenter.
I opted for the easiest way to fit them - using aluminum worktop joint trim it might not be as flawless as the method mentioned above but - hey - it saved me a ton of money and it was dead easy !
Sink and Tap - i picked cheaply also ;) - sadly i had to pay a plumber to plumb in the sink - but that was only thing i wasn't prepared to do on my own
My kitchen doors were a bit of a nightmare - they are not a standard sized doors and besides being darn ugly there weren't many places i could look for offers i knew that i wanted to remove top and bottom unit and replace both with 1 tall ladder unit - so the first pace go was ikea - and i picked up super tall white shaker style unit with doors and shelves for £115 - then i set for finding a doors to match online . A company called Kitchen door workshop popped up in my search results - they carry a massive range of styles and colors of doors to suit every style with doors starting as little as £4,71 -i checked a trust pilot reviews and set for measuring my doors , website also offers a how to videos - from measuring to fitting - it was a painless process , extra option of having your door pre drilled to fit hinges you got saved me a lot of hassle. Doors arrived well packed and they were much better quality than my old doors - win win
The beginning (aka prep work)
I started from knocking all the tiles of the wall which in terms seem like a great idea at the time - i also forgot i have no doors leading to the kitchen which resulted in rest of the house being covered in a thick layer of dust ...
removal of cabinets and worktops was painless - all of which i managed to re sale later on to keep costs down
Removing a unit out isn't as difficult as you can imagine just look for screws ! - my units as well as being hanged on the wall they were screwed to each other.
I had to cut a worktop shorter in order to be able to use it for the time being .
Putting a flat pack unit yourself wasn't as hard , a little awkward maybe (but when doing it on my own i wasn't as stressed out) If you ever put together a flat pack as a couple you know well that this thing will test the strength of your relationship to the Max !
To think of it - every new couple that think of moving in together should try and put a flat pack together.
Ok back to the kitchen - once i had a unit in place it was time for me to start tiling ( i couldn't fit rest of the doors because i didn't want them to be dirty ( ikea doors were fitted because i got 2 dogs and that unit stores all our food and spices x
Tiling - Getting down and dirty
Tiling as scary as it sounds its quite easy- well easier than tiling a wall as tile will not slide down ;)
Preparations is a key! to do a simple tile job you will need few things : (i shopped around for all of those to get best price possible - i also kept all the items below from my hallway tile job )
tile cutter (i used both manual and electric with great results )
tile snipers /nippers - they will be very handy
combi spreader /squeegee (just because i love using them- but you can use grout float instead )
bucket x 2
mixing tool and drill - i saved money and attached a wooden spatula to my drill -works same way
Also : spirit level , marker pen ,scrapers , pencil ,measuring tape, safety glasses ,knee pads (those are a God send!) tile trim correct tile adhesive and grout (for wall tiles) and gloves and don't forget wearing them like i did
Before you start make sure your floor is leveled and cleaned - if its not you need to use a leveling compound
Depending on adhesive - a ready mixed adhesive (more expensive and saves time) or powdered one- please read mixing instructions on how much water to add on a packing and mix it in the bucket
Mark a straight line on the floor as a guide for your first center lines of tiles .
Also fill a second bucket with water and have a sponge ready
Now we are ready to start!
i have used a notched trowel that also have a a flat surface and spread adhesive according to manufacture instructions - put a "blob of adhesive " onto a floor- then to even the adhesive out i used notched side of the trowel working both ways and removing the eccess - then once you done that you can place tile gently onto the adhesive. Give the tile a bit of a wiggle so it will stick better ,and to release any trapped air.
Then use your spirit level to make sure tile is leveled , place another tile next to it and repeat what you did before , as soon as you done it place a chosen tile spacers in between the tiles to ensure even gap. Clean any adhesive off the tiles using a wet sponge - it will save you extra work later on
This isn't as difficult as it sounds , you need to mark the tile where you need it to be cut or trimmed off , make sure you measure space correctly allowing some space to fit tile spacers , transfer your measurements onto a tile and began to make a cut
For wall tiles - same thing applies but start from the top of the worktop going up first - to stop tiles from sliding down (by a cooker) screw few screws or bang few nails into a wall
Grouting - and why you should wear your gloves
Lets be honest here grouting isn't fun , depending on the color of your grout - it is worst than baptizing a cat ! (not that you would baptize a cat anyway - but you get the idea )
Here is what you need before you start :
- sponge and dry cloth
- grout float or combi tool
- mixing tool or wooden spatula
- Drill and grout
To began grouting first you need to make sure adhesive have set i waited 2 days just to be on a safe side
Mix grout according to instructions on the back of the bag - adding little water while you mix to achieve a consistency of a cream cheese. Using a grout float or a combi tool began applying grout into the gaps (ohh and remove tile spacers before you start ;) working grout at 45 degree angle - make sure that when you are doing it you are "pushing the grout in"
Allow it to dry a little - and start wiping the excesses grout - I have used 2 methods both are as messy and can make you lose your cool
Wet-sponge it till as clean as possible, or dry wipe it - that worked better on my wall tiles.
And that's abut it - it might leave you slightly crazy but the job is done ;)
Doors -to buy or diy - your options (plus a diy guide)
To buy :
As mentioned at the start of the post i have opted for buying my doors for 2 reasons :
- I wanted a different style
- I have replaced drawers i didn't need with a full door
Traditional Shaker style kitchen was always a small dream of mine , changing doors was a much cheaper option as well as the easiest one in terms of work and mess that comes with it - besides replacing 2 cabinets with a one long one and removing one wall unit in order to fit the shelving - all remaining doors were ordered from Kitchen Door Workshop as my cabinet carcasses were in a pretty good condition.
I picked a traditional silk white door from the Trends range - Washington -from Kitchen Door Workshop Delivery for a a non standard door sizes took 7 days to deliver - next day for standard sizes (wow!)
You can follow a easy video guide on how to measure the doors , and hinge spacing guide video that is provided on their website
Because i was ditching most of the drawers that for some bizarre reason were put on the top part of every unit- it was quite a lot of fun working out where to place a hinge .
When doors arrived all i had to do is remove drawer gliders and move one of the hinges up and then screw the doors in .
Comparing to my new Ikea as well as my old doors - KDW doors felt heavier and made better , also corners were slightly curved which is a perfect option for families with kids .
As i already mentioned i dont do planning i just go with the flow - when i placed an order i have changed my mind when it came to the amount of doors i wanted to order - a quick phone call and company added extra door to my order saving me paying for extra postage ! ( delivery is free for orders over £250)
As long as you follow video guide for measuring ( and triple check everything ) you really cant go wrong
For any corner posts you have 2 options -buy one that matches the right color , or go the cheaper route - fablon it -( sticky back plastic - i ordered mine in mat on ebay) - doors were fitted within few hours, as i had to move and adjust some hinges .
Having a door made to measure also allowed me to add a door to a extra narrow space by the cooker(see pic below) - that part (as its not a unit) was made i think by the people who fitted the kitchen - it was to narrow for any narrow door ;)
To fit handles - pick one you like ( mine were cheap ebay china find) you will need to measure the correct distance for the holes , mask the area for drilling - that will stop the drill sliding and damaging your doors in the process , also pick a correct type and size of the drill bit-
For ease of installation you can purchase a " handle drilling jig" From Kitchen door workshop they also carry a range of handles as a " one stop shop"
To diy : ( based on experience)
Transforming your doors with a lick of paint or wrapping them couldn't be simpler!
If you fancy giving this a go as mention before you have 2 options :
- Paint -preparation is a key , before you start wash your doors with sugar soap and sponge to remove any dirt or grease that would build up , depending on a type of a door - wood or mdf - you can give both a light sanding , or with mdf you can also use a heat gun to remove the wrapping from the door
Once you done that you will need:
-zinsser bin primer - its by far best primer i used
-paint in color and make of your choice - i can recommend 3v3 paint (no need to varnish ;)
-varnish (optional but could be required for certain paints )
- paint brush and roller
After area is clean and dry apply a first coat of primer ( you will need to re coat - please check the instructions on the back of the tin ) , after you done with primer , use paint - i usually use roller to apply paint and slightly sand between coats for an even finish , make sure paint is dry between each coat , lastly varnish - apply few coats in between - again making sure that each coat is fully dry- be careful with your doors until surface is fully harden - for some varnishes , and paints it might take as little as few days and as long as few weeks
2.Wrap - I have a love hate relationship with wrapping doors and worktops in sticky back plastic - for a best results it requires some practice , as well as clean surface (washed with sugar soap ) - there are few methods that you can use to achieve a professional result
- dry method: you will need a credit card wrapped in cloth or a soft card , a cloth , needle and hairdryer (both are helpful with dealing with those pesky bubbles that wont go ) - start by unrolling your roll of sticky back plastic and undoing a little bit of the top - place the sticky side down onto a surface , then use a card , cloth to push out any bubbles , slowly keep undoing sticky back plastic working your way down , if there is a bubble that wont go away pierce the area with a needle and flatten it - hairdryer will shrink the wrap a little
-wet method: - use a spray bottle with a soapy water solution -this will stop the sticky back plastic sticking onto a surface allowing you to place it fully , then use a shower squeegee( or a grout multi tool) to squeegee away all the water that you spray onto a surface - then wipe all excess liquid with a tea towel - if there are bubbles poke them with the needle
Paint and Shelves :
To finish this kitchen i have used scaffold boards that i sanded, trimmed and stained (Wilko Jacobean dark oak) to achieve more rustic look , my eBay brackets arrived bent so i got a full refund. I thought i give the straightening brackets a go and safe to say i spent most of the day hammering them - i can imagine my neighbors were happy -not!
To attach brackets to a tiled wall - its best to use a tile drill bit (diamond) , you will also need to mask the area to stop drill from slipping - as soon as you drill though the tile swap drill bit for a correct one for your wall in my case - masonry drill bit .I used longer screws and wall plugs to ensure that shelves will stay in place
Paint - i have used a valspar paint slightly darker than it was before.
I hope you have find my kitchen makeover and diy guides helpful - id love to hear your thoughts on it
Now for the fun part !
Lovely guys (and gals) at Tile Mountain kindly donated us £50 voucher to spend on tiles of your choice
To be in a chance of winning please complete the following
1-Follow Tile Mountain in Instagram
2- On my Instagram post tag a friend to be in the chance of winning
competition will run till Sunday 11 of June and winner will be picked at random x Good luck everyone
- This post was made in collaboration with Tile mountain and and Kitchen door workshop -All photos and views are my own.
This giveaway was made with the generosity of Tile Mountain -Thank you so much for making this giveaway possible x
winner of a giveaway is @jodecomania
To find out more about products use please visit
Tile mountain https://www.tilemountain.co.uk/
Kitchen door workshop https://www.kitchendoorworkshop.co.uk/