About catherine
Catherine is a CPA-turned-creative entrepreneur. She is the founder of Beginning in the Middle. an interior designer, photographer, writer, and business schemer.  She loves being cozy at home, miniature everything, and has a not-so-secret dream of living on an island one day.
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Before & After

Before and After: A $387 Budget Kitchen Update


UPDATE! We were featured on Country Living (check it out here) and The Kitchn (see here)!

Well folks, we’ve finished our kitchen mini-update which means it’s time for some before & after photos!  In our last two posts, we shared how we updated the cabinets and added a backsplash.  We also swapped out the old ivory switch plates for new metal ones, which made a huge difference.  We went with the Style Selections brand at Lowe’s because it was the least expensive, but still looked nice.

All in all, here’s what we spent on the project:

Cabinet Update – $113
Marble Backsplash – $244
Replace Switch Plates – $30

Total Cost: $387

I know we talked about doing the floor with these tiles, but realized it would be a lot more work than we expected.  Since the kitchen floor extends under our fridge and washer/dryer, we would need to disconnect and move them in order to access those areas with the new tile.  We didn’t have the time to do that this time around with renters coming and going, and just didn’t want to deal with the hassle.

So, with that being said, here’s what the kitchen looked like before:

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And here’s what it looks like now!

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We love it.  We don’t even mind the white appliances or the plain white countertops anymore!  If we decide to get adventurous again, we’ll do DIY concrete countertops (like these) and tile the floor.  And maybe replace the appliances.  But for now, we’re happy with the way our mini-update looks… especially since it cost under $400 to do!

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  1. Jess says:

    The kitchen looks awesome! Crazy what a little paint and tile can do.

  2. Konnie Davis says:

    Looks great … can you tell me what you used between the counter and the back splash. It looks like the before pics had a piece of the counter going up a few inches. In the after there isn’t anything. Is it just a line of caulk?

    • Catherine says:

      Konnie- that’s exactly what happened. We had a 6″ laminate backsplash on there, and took it all off so we could bring the new marble backsplash all the way down. And you guessed it- we lined it with caulk!

  3. You did an amazing job on such a small budget. Looks great!

  4. Robin B. says:

    Love the new look of your kitchen! I like your pot holder thing (not sure what to call it) hanging from the ceiling. Where did you get it?

  5. Lourdes says:

    Fantastic job! You have just inspired me! My husband and I bought a house last year and same as you and Bryan, we were set on doing kitchen reno first but the budget has not allowed it – thanks for inspiring me – I think we maybe able to do a similar reno as you guys did – I love the white cabinets!

  6. Susan Cryor says:

    Where did you find your little storage table with 2 drawers?

  7. Bessy says:

    It looks fabulous!

  8. Susan McKinney says:

    Looks great! Where did you purchase your backsplash?

  9. Jo Ann Parron says:

    What type of paint did you uses to ain’t the cabinets….latex or oil based?

  10. […] See full story on beginninginthemiddle.com […]

  11. Jen says:

    Beautiful! Any tips on avoiding pooling paint in the corners of your door trim? That’s keeping me from taking the leap and paintng mine.

  12. Pam says:

    Catherine, Great job. I love a white kitchen as you can always add color with accessories. A suggestion …you might think about painting underneath the top cabinets and adding some task lights. Made a huge difference in my own kitchen.

  13. Trish says:

    This is amazing! Great job Cat & Bryan!

  14. […] Great job on the update, Catherine and Bryan! You can see more of their kitchen makeover on their blog, Beginning in the Middle. […]

  15. Elle Kay says:

    THAT was completely inspiring! TOTALLY beautiful result, I LOVED it! Thanks!!!

  16. […] via The Golden Sycamore via Domestic Imperfection via Beginning in the Middle […]

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Catherine & Bryan Williamson moved from NYC to Columbus, OH in 2013.  Beginning in the Middle is a journal of the couple's design and renovation projects, real estate investment and Airbnb hosting journey, travel, and other life happenings.



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I grew up in New Jersey and always had a dream of living in New York.  There was something about the energy of the city that drew me inOur journey started unexpectedly in 2012, when we decided to make a big move from New York to Columbus. The glamour of climbing the corporate ladder was wearing off, and we knew that renting an expensive small apartment and dealing with crowded subways everyday was not going to work forever. We wanted to start creating something for ourselves, and although we didn’t know exactly what that something was, we knew NYC wasn’t the place for it.

We decided on Columbus because Bryan grew up here, and we were intrigued by all of the development going on in the downtown area at the time. We drove through many of the neighborhoods and admired the boarded up old houses, most of which were built in the early 1900s, and started dreaming about the things we could do here.

I'm Catherine, and I'm the founder of Beginning in the Middle.

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