A Renter-Friendly Kitchen Makeover

Tiny Kitchen Gets a Renter-Friendly Makeover Before and AfterThis post is dedicated to my fellow renters out there. I see you, living with poor design choices that you didn’t make, and can’t change without risking your security deposit. You stare at perfect homes on pinterest, and dream of customising your own house one day. Well maybe you don’t, but I certainly do. I pin unattainable interiors constantly, but sometimes I give myself a break and search for “rental makeovers.” Then instead of getting depressed about my situation, I’m inspired by creative people who have improved their rented homes, and I get ideas. It’s great! Anyways, I did a little makeover in my kitchen recently, and decided to share it to keep the idea circle going. Don’t worry, this isn’t one of those makeovers that involves painting cupboards, installing tile/fixtures, or any of that rubbish. (Nothing against those types of projects, but I wouldn’t call them “renter-friendly.”) Everything I did in here was affordable and temporary. I’m excited to share how it turned out, but first allow me introduce you to the kitchen before.

For a rental property in the UK, this kitchen’s not bad. It’s not falling apart (yet), and it fits all the necessities into a small space. I haven’t shared much about it because as far as kitchens go, it’s pretty meh. Our house was built before indoor plumbing was common, so the kitchen and bathroom upstairs were added on later. They are the exact same size, which means we have a spacious bathroom and a tiny, but functional, kitchen. I did try to be content with a boring functional kitchen, I really did, but deep down I wanted more. I wanted cute and happy, not this Tiny Kitchen - Sink BeforeI turned the back wall of the kitchen into a chalkboard awhile ago, but it wasn’t enough to distract me from the sadness in this sink area. Let’s just say, I got tired of staring at this view everyday while doing the dishes, so I started thinking about how I could make this room more interesting and fun. Painting wasn’t an option because we’re renting, and Andrew won’t let me. I also wasn’t allowed to get rid of the walls separating the kitchen from the dining room, BUT IT’S A BRILLIANT IDEA so I’m including a photo to illustrate how wonderful it would be.

Dining Rooma dream that will never be 💔

Dear Landlord, If you are reading this, please consider widening the entry to the kitchen. It would make this house 100 times better. Also while you’re at it, I would love a dishwasher. Sincerely, Me

Ok moving on. Back to the projects I was able to do. First, I saved inspiration photos of kitchen things that I love, and it helped me come up with some doable ideas:Kitchen Makeover Inspiration

letter board / chalkboard / cabinet pulls / moroccan tile stickers

I found black cabinet hardware and a rug on Amazon, and pieced together the remaining items. I ordered custom Moroccan tile stickers on Etsy to go behind the sink. It was super easy to stick them on, and because they line up perfectly with the actual tiles, it’s pretty hard to tell they aren’t real. Updating the backsplash behind the sink made such a difference!Tiny Kitchen Gets a Renter-Friendly Makeover Backsplash Before and AfterPretty great right? I only put tile stickers on this wall, and took them into the corner slightly where there’s a strange wooden bump out. It was unattractive, so I decided to use some extra tile stickers to disguise it.

It’s still an awkward corner, but at least it’s a little nicer to look at now. Normally we have a drying rack in front of the window for dishes, but I moved it out of the way for some prettier photos. 🙂 Speaking of photos, here’s a bunch of them!Tiny Kitchen Gets a Renter-Friendly Makeover After Photo


The other side of the kitchen is mostly the same as it’s always been, but the cabinet hardware was replaced. As you can see, we have a lovely *not* row of appliances that are all different colors/brands/heights, so trying to style this area nearly made me go insane.Tiny Kitchen Renter-Friendly Makeover

Must. Look. Away. I experimented with a sort of café arrangement over here. I’m not sure if I like it, but here it is…Tiny Kitchen Renter-Friendly Makeover Counter StylingKitchen Makeover_0740No, we don’t leave cappuccinos and croissants laying around on our precious counter space, or flowers in the sink. Normally the kitchen looks like this.Tiny Kitchen Renter-Friendly Makeover Counter EverydayTiny Kitchen Renter-Friendly Makeover EverydayTiny Kitchen Renter-Friendly Makeover EverydayWell, what do you think? Do you have a similar situation in your home? I’d love to hear about how you deal with your home’s quirks! 🙂

Tiny Kitchen Renter-Friendly Makeover Removable Tile Backsplash


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