DIY budget kitchen make-over – stage 2

Yesterday I shared my kitchen make-over that was completed on a budget.

I appreciate all your lovely comments.



My home is quite compact and definitely not magazine worthy, but even so, I hope I inspired some of you to have a go at these simple and cheap techniques that can update your look on a budget.


Today I wanted to share with you 2 more techniques I used in the make-over.



Painting the bench tops black was way out of my comfort zone… but if you remember the story behind the black table in my breakfast nook, you’ll understand why we ventured into ‘black’ territory in my shabby existence.

I used a product called Countertop Transformations by Rust-oleum. It came as a complete kit with everything you need for approx AU$160.

It was actually quite easy to apply and being black, it camouflaged all the scratches and marks already in the bench top. I’m not usually a fan of black, but I’m lovin’ the result.



In the months since we first painted it, there have been a couple of minor chips in my bench top, which puzzled me for awhile…. until I realised they were being caused by the tips of sharp knives being put down in the sink area.

To fix those little knicks, I dabbed on dots of black acrylic paint, followed by a tiny dot of varnish. Now you can’t even see where those little chips were. That reassures me, that if we do get any damage later on, I’ll be able to do some spot repairs.



When you have to adapt to a much smaller kitchen space… and by smaller I mean about one third the size of my previous kitchen, one has to be very mindful of using every available space to its full potential.

It struck me that this wall space beside the fridge cavity could be better used.

To carry the black theme throughout the kitchen, I decided to paint this wall with a chalkboard finish, so it could double as a message centre/board, plus there was space to add a shelf and hanging bar.



The second technique I wanted to share with you is how I achieved the chalkboard wall… without chalkboard paint.

There are many chalkboard finishes on the market, but I used what is perhaps one of the original chalk paints that’s been around for around 500 years…

yep… I used good old Gesso!



Artists have been using Gesso for centuries to prime canvases, make moulds and repair works of art.

I’ve always used Jo Sonja’s black Gesso for my chalkboard finishes. It’s half the price of commercial chalkboard paints and gives me a fabulous finish every time.

For this project, I cleaned the laminate with the White Knight Tile and Laminate spray, washed it down with water and then gave it a light sanding. I brushed on 2 coats of black Gesso, allowing several hours drying time between coats.

To condition the chalkboard ready for use, it is necessary to rub white chalk over the entire board, then rub it off with a blackboard duster.



As you can see, the white/black backdrop allows me to change out the kitchen for completely different looks and moods.

Hugs ~ Kerryanne


I’d love for you to connect with me at:

      google plus rose smoke  instagram rose smokejpeg

Follow on Bloglovin

or if you’d like my posts delivered directly to your Inbox

Subscribe to Shabby Art Boutique by Email


  1. So pretty! I love your colours, especially against the chalkboard background!!

    • Thanks Anne. Black can certainly be a great neutraliser for a background and a nice change from all our white 🙂

  2. This is so cute, I love the chalkboard finish that you used. I was just looking at your previous post about your kitchen remodel and it turned out so charming. Our kitchen is in line for a bit of a refresh… one of these days!

    • Thank you Sally. Ours was quite awhile in the making. We live and work from our home, so there were times that it wasn’t appropriate to have it smelling like paint or looking like there were renovations going on. It was a stop/start project over about 6 months, which was incredibly frustrating for me. There are still a few finishing touches like new taps etc that need to be done, but at least now it is looking complete. Good luck with yours when you get around to it 🙂

  3. Very interesting about the gesso paint ,never knew that
    I bought the stuff in a can a few years ago not knowing about your smart Technic

    • Yes Janice, artists have been using it forever and it works just the same as chalk paint. It is a primer and adheres to almost any surface, so perfect for these décor jobs. You’ll have to give it a go 🙂

  4. Great technique for the chalkboard Kerryanne.
    The black in the kitchen area works really well with your soft colour schemes.
    Toni xx

    • Thanks Toni. I really ummed and arrhhed over the black bench tops. I was still a bit freaked out while painting it, but the next morning I loved it. I think the pastel accessories do soften it somewhat. xx

  5. i never thought to use gesso–you are so clever, kerryanne! your kitchen is as charming as can be:) love the green gate goodies, too!

    • I can whole heartedly recommend it Lynn. I’ve been using it for years without any dramas. The GreenGate is a bit special that’s for sure!! 🙂

  6. So great how you can change it around to suit your mood or the season. Well done!

  7. I love your kitchen and the fact you said your home is not magazine worthy. That has always been a dream of mine, but when I see those homes in magazines, I understand why mine isn’t. However, I love my home as much as they love theirs. Btw, I love your pink alarm clock. Did you paint it or purchase it? Pink is my fav. I am very new to your blog, where have I been?..

    • Thanks Becky and welcome to Shabby Art Boutique. I’m doing what I can to make our home liveable and functional for us. I think it is coming along nicely, but it is nothing special or grand. We can’t all have magnificent magazine styled homes…. but I agree with you, it doesn’t mean we love our home any less. That cute little pink alarm clock was a gift from a friend many years ago. I’m not sure where it came from and I haven’t seen any others around for a long while.

  8. What you did with the chalk bd look was great, and have to say all your pastel pretties ran away with my heart………..sigh!
    How fun that you can have so many great looks in one room, especially the kitchen………..

    Blessings, Nellie

    • Thank you Nellie. I think this will become my most changeable room in the house. After all, we do spend a lot of time in the kitchen, so it will be easy to just move things on a whim – lol. My poor suffering husband…. he can hardly keep up!!
      Thanks for stopping by ~ Kerry

  9. In love with the colors you use, very beautiful indeed!

    • Thanks Jeanette. I love being able to change things around often, but I always come back to my cottage pastels or all shades of white.


  1. […] This week on Shabby Art Boutique, I shared my kitchen make-over on a budget. See it here and here. […]

  2. […] This week on Shabby Art Boutique, I shared my kitchen make-over on a budget. See it here and here.“ […]

Speak Your Mind