Makeover By Monday | 3-Day Diner Vibes Kitchen Renovation
My friend Katie’s kitchen was the first kitchen project of the season, and let me tell you, it was quite the undertaking! Renovating a kitchen in just three days is no joke — and on top of all the work, I added a bunch of design elements that really pushed what we could complete in such a short time. It was a whirlwind of DIY projects, design decisions, and countless moving parts. Mr. Yolo and I were exhausted after this one, but the excitement of the transformation made it one of our all-time favorites.
Katie is a friend from my entrepreneur group; she runs an amazing company, Big White Yeti Candles Co., out of her basement. Her husband is a teacher, and they both have a bold and wonderfully quirky style. Their 1950’s ranch house had been renovated over the years, but the kitchen remained untouched. The rest of their space was filled with vibrant jewel tones and oozed personality, and I was determined to capture that spirit in their kitchen. The design idea: A 50’s diner vibe with a modern twist. I wanted to infuse their fun-loving energy into this blah kitchen.
We went all out — painted cabinets, open shelving, a butcher block countertop, new flooring, and even a corner banquette, and the list goes on. I still don’t know how we managed to pull it off in three days, but we did, and the transformation is unbelievable!
Plum & Green Combination
When I walked through the kitchen with the couple, I suggested painting the cabinets plum, and their eyes lit up. I love how plum and green work together, so these hues set the tone. From there, I added the diner vibe elements: the checkerboard floor, the square stacked tile, and that incredible banquette!
Ah, the tufted corner banquette! This DIY marvel was a labor of love. It was the biggest DIY project I took on in the workshop, and I only had one shot to get it right. I upholstered it in green velvet, adding a touch of luxury that felt just right against the black and white checkerboard tile. It’s truly a beautiful moment in the room that totally changed the function of this corner. I’ll be sharing the whole process of the banquette in the episode, so stay tuned for a step-by-step guide this week!
For the flooring, we used peel-and-stick vinyl tiles — a quick and easy upgrade that transformed the space. A perfect weekend DIY project!
Isn’t this cabinet paint color (Benjamin Moore Dark Walnut) so fun! Stay tuned for a post on how we painted the cabinets, coming this week!
Upper Cabinets Turned Coffee/Snack Bar
I got creative with the cabinetry. Removing the soffits was a game changer; it made the room look so much bigger. I wanted to show off the new ceiling height with open shelving and a tiled backsplash. Doesn’t it make a dramatic difference? The ceiling looks SO tall! I also repurposed some upper cabinets into a charming coffee and snack bar, giving them more counter space and storage!
Wood Wall Treatment
We definitely did not need to add a wall treatment onto our already packed weekend, but I was having so much fun creating this layered design. Once I had it in my head, we just had to do it. We nailed 1x6s to the wall using a 1×2 as a spacer. Above the trim, I used 1x2s. The dimension it added to the walls was totally worth it; Mr. Yolo will even agree, even when we had so much left to do.
Every detail was carefully considered, and I poured my heart into making this kitchen not just functional but a vibrant reflection of Katie and her family. All the shopping details are below. If you have any questions or if I missed anything, please let me know in the comments!
- Cabinet Paint: Benjamin Moore Dark Walnut
- Paint: Behr Aged Beige
- Paint: Behr Washed Olive
- Tile: Zellige Perla Polished Ceramic Tile from Floor & Decor
- Flooring: Peel & Stick Checkerboard
- Art: Aubergine Poppies by Elizabeth Bowman
- Cutting Board: Modern Round Charcuterie Board from Camino Woodshop
- Bamboo Blinds
- Faux Marble Top Round Table
- Black Vase
- Stoneware Dishes
- Wall-Mounted Paper Roll
- Cabinet Pulls
- Cabinet Knobs
- Sink Faucet
- Range Hood
- Ceramic Berry Basket
- Wall Sconce with Arm
- Ceiling Light
- Over the Sink Sconce