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5 beautiful and affordable updates to make in your kitchen

You know, I have shared the 'before' of our kitchen several times on my blog... and I always have to pause and wonder why in the world I thought that THIS house was THE ONE.

cottage style kitchen with flowers on marble island

You know the story... it was full of issues- one room after another. 
It was vandalized. It was neglected. 
It had no ceiling at all in places. 
It was simply put... broken.

But, that story that showed all the issues and flaws and what you saw right in front of you
brought to mind another story about seeing something not for what it is... 

but what it could be.

And that is definitely where we were with this house and with the kitchen when we decided to jump in and give it a go.
We needed to find a way to make all that cottage kitchen potential shine.

cottage style kitchen island with flowers

So after the obvious clean up and quick refreshes- 
and those lofty dreams of  kitchen reminiscent of one that belongs in a castle...
we started to focus on updates
that we could do and that wouldn't cost a fortune.
Because, when you have an entire house to fix or refresh- budget is key.

And in the process of learning all about diy updates, 
what to do with broken pipes,
 how to close up missing ceilings, get rid of critters  and that fun stuff- 
we found a second home. 
And it was filled with people who understood me and commiserated those broken pipes with me
and who helped me scheme up ideas for renovations.

It was called Lowe's Home Improvement.

And today, I am sharing 5 simple updates that you can make in your kitchen that will warm it up, give you a ton of cottage style and charm and that won't break the bank.  
Of course fresh paint is always a good idea- but here are a few others.

#1. New Cabinet Hardware

Sounds simple enough right? 
Hardware is like jewelry- pick the right one to go with that pretty new outfit and it finishes it perfectly. Pick the wrong one... and well, it just doesn't work well.
I love a brassy finish on the hardware- but you can choose any that you speak to you and your style. Choose all knobs- or a mix of knobs and pulls for a custom look.

round knobs in kitchen

#2. Add a Kitchen Island 

We didn't have an island when we moved in- but we did have a very long, large kitchen with not enough working area or counter space. 
We needed somewhere  to chop veggies, work on homework while cooking and just enjoy a spot for the kids to sit for breakfast. 
A farmhouse island was perfect.

french cottage style kitchen island with a bucket of flowers

Building an island would be a little involved- but finding a freestanding island 
with style and charm- was an easy fix. 
You can custom paint it- add your own matching hardware
and even change the island top down the road if you want and it will look like it always belonged.

#3. Update your backsplash

Such a simple update but one that makes a huge difference. 
We had beaded board panels that we had cut to use as the backsplash to cover old gaps in boards and old damaged areas. But that bead board just wasn't the look we were going for.

marble counter and subway tile backsplash in cottage kitchen

Tile is a simple and easy way to make your kitchen feel completely different-and there are so many choices out there. We kept it classic cottage with small subway tile in ours- but there might be a change coming there...

#4. A new faucet 

Your kitchen faucet is another thing like the hardware. It has a job to do of course- and it is a pretty important one- but it also can be pretty while doing it. Whether you have an older home and classic style- or prefer something sleek and modern- a faucet can make a huge difference.

kitchen faucet in champagne bronze with marble

This one has a touch sensor- which is pretty awesome for walking over and tapping with your arm if your hands are dirty.

#5. A farmhouse sink

I had dreamed of one of those luscious farmhouse sinks in the kitchen for awhile... you know the ones- with the extra deep basins, the pretty front and old nostalgic style and charm. So pretty. And farmhouse style sinks aren't just for farmhouse kitchens.

farmhouse sink filled with flowers in kitchen

Changing from a regular sink to a farmhouse style sink when we updated made a huge difference in not only how the sink functioned- but also in the overall style.

All of these elements can be found right at Lowe's- 
and you can click this photo below to shop the look for some of the products I used.( each number links directly) 

Some of these updates do require some knowledge of construction or plumbing- but another thing you can find at Lowe's while shopping for cabinets or the next big renovation?  The right person for the job to help you out. They do have a team of professionals that they can connect you with to make your renovation dreams come true.

We have a couple more updates planned for our kitchen- and I will be sharing them along the way.
Shop the image for links to the products I love for the kitchen refresh- and right now- Lowe's has a Kitchen and Bath event with up to 40% off running through March 23rd. 
And that is a good reason to get moving on those projects, right?

champagne bronze kitchen faucet with marble counters

I am off to get busy on a couple upcoming posts and photos- 
see you soon for more kitchen inspiration next week
and all the details on that pretty bouquet.

Happy Wednesday everyone.

I partnered with Lowe's to share a few easy affordable updates for your kitchen
but all opinions and love of my Lowe's family are my own.


  1. Hi Courtney, Your kitchen is beautiful! Thanks for the info on Lowe's. My husband and I have been wanting to update our kitchen and bathrooms, so this may be the perfect time to start. Happy Wednesday to you!

  2. All I can say is that your kitchen is perfection....the perfect island and sink for that farmhouse look, the perfect amount of bling in the chandelier and the faucet...and of course the jewels in the hardware!...The kitchen has certainly been given new life by you working your magic!

    1. Thanks Shirley. It has been a lot of work but worth it! :) Hope to see you at Market in April! xo

  3. Your kitchen is absolutely stunning! What a beautiful space! You have done such a wonderful job, and the tips you shared are perfect!

  4. Your kitchen is too cute, thanks for all the info. is very helpful..

  5. I love your sink and your got it for an amazing price.
    I too love subway tiles I have them in my kitchen -
    Beautiful home.
    Have a great day
    Much love,

    1. Subway tiles are great for any style kitchen I think! Thanks for stopping by Rose!

  6. Back four years ago, I had the same epiphany for my house as you did your cottage.....what was I thinking? Until now and am literally living in my dream home. I also saw the diamond beneath the rotting boards and the hoarder who previously lived there. Thank you for your inspiration and love for what you do. Your new friend, Cindy <3

  7. Every update is lovely and adds so much charm! Blessings, Cecilia

  8. Your kitchen is so pretty, love idea of using a farm table for an island and the flowers look awesome.

  9. This kitchen is lovely. I love the open dish rack to the right of the sink, and the high display shelf above the window. Love that you partner with Lowe's. They are my go-to source for home improvement.

  10. Love all of the updates!! Provides so much inspiration without breaking the bank!
    Did you replace your cabinets or a fresh coat of paint?

    Beautifully done!

  11. I noticed when I clicked on the SHOP link to Lowes for the island, it is not the same island in your January 2017 blog...may I ask where you found the one you have in your kitchen? The legs/base is much prettier than the one the SHOP link sends me to. Thank you!

    1. Hi Lisa,
      The old island was years old - we originally found it at Costco I believe. But there was no link to share since it had not been in stock for some time. I just tried to find one that was similar. We have a completely different island in our kitchen now.