Before and after: This small kitchen was given a stunning makeover that saved over £13K

This small kitchen got the ultimate budget facelift, and the results are incredible

green kitchen with wood floor and wood worktops
(Image credit: Ruggable / @homeinthetoon)

Kitchens are not cheap to renovate, however, we're seriously impressed by this small green kitchen before and after the makeover. Not only did the couple do much of the work themselves, but they saved thousands in the process!

Whether you're looking for ways to makeover the hub of your home or just want some budget kitchen ideas, it can be tricky to know where to start, especially when kitchens come at a premium. That's why getting on board with doing the DIY yourself can mean it's often much more affordable, despite it being extra work.

This clever couple did exactly that and transformed their kitchen into a stylish and modern room, but they also saved a whopping £13k from what they were quoted.

Small green kitchen makeover

Jess and Connor, from Gateshead, were originally quoted £15,000 to have their kitchen redone, which they knew they didn't want to pay. 

'We weren't planning on doing the kitchen ourselves originally,' Jess told interior brand Ruggable. 'I'd always said that the kitchen would be the first big job we would do when we bought this house, as I always hated how bland and cold it was. After getting quotes from three or four different places, all of which were around the £15,000 mark, we decided that we couldn’t justify those costs for such a small space and decided we’d have a go at doing it ourselves.'


kitchen before with white cabinets

(Image credit: Ruggable / @homeinthetoon)

The white kitchen and grey floor tiles weren't to the couple's taste and they were keen to add their own small kitchen ideas to the space. 'Our interior style is a real mix of things,' says Jess. 'We take a lot of inspiration from 70’s earthy colour palettes and love natural materials such as wood. We like to mix these with more contemporary fixtures and fittings to create a put-together unified space.'

So, did the couple achieve this in their new-look kitchen?


green kitchen with wood floor and wood worktops

(Image credit: Ruggable / @homeinthetoon)

Deep green cabinets, wooden worktops and flooring and luxe gold handles have transformed the kitchen into a warm, inviting space. The best part though, is that the couple managed to take on the DIY themselves, and upcycle half of their old kitchen in the process…

'After lots of time on Pinterest, TikTok and YouTube, we just went for it,' says Jess. 'The original tiles and kitchen cupboards are the same ones we started with – we just painted the cabinets using Green 05 paint from Lick. We also bought our Smeg fridge-freezer secondhand, which saved us about £2,000 off the retail price.'

green kitchen with cooker and extractor hood

(Image credit: Ruggable / @homeinthetoon)

With the cabinets and tiles painted, the couple replaced the worktops with Ikea's Vrena design, which cost £300, giving the kitchen an entirely new look.

'My biggest tip is just to spend some time figuring out exactly what you want from your space before you start any decorating,' says Jess. 'It’s a messy, time-consuming thing to do, so having a clear vision helped speed that up. 

'Also, always make sure to spend time doing prep work. It’s potentially the worst part, but it makes such a difference to the finish and durability of things. ' 

green kitchen cabinets with gold tap and handles

(Image credit: Ruggable / @homeinthetoon)

A Wodar boiling water tap cost the couple £300, while the black sink from Ikea was £65. To complete the makeover, brass handles from Amazon came to an extra £30.

'I think the kitchen as a whole has been transformed massively, but I would say the things that have made the most difference were actually the cheapest things to do,' Jess explains. 

'Painting both the kitchen tiles and cupboards has completely changed the look of this space. And something as simple as changing the chrome handles out for brass also added something extra.'

green kitchen with white smeg fridge

(Image credit: Ruggable / @homeinthetoon)

When it came to appliances, the couple bought some new ones, including the secondhand Smeg fridge-freezer for £430. 'We created this space for £1,500, including all of our new appliances,' says Jess. 'It would have cost us around £700 to makeover the full space if we didn't add these.'

£1500 is quite a bit different from the original £15,000 quoted, making this budget makeover a huge success. 

Laurie Davidson

Laurie Davidson is a professional stylist, writer and content creator, who lives and breathes interiors. Having worked for some of the UK’s leading interior magazines, styled homes up and down the country and produced sets for TV shows, adverts and top brands, it’s safe to say Laurie has had a pretty exciting career. Find her on Instagram at @lifeofaninteriorstylist or over at