When Shen Outar and her partner Nico Harvey moved into their old council apartment in 2020, they knew it needed a breath of fresh air.
The couple were keen to spruce up their new property, without spending a fortune, and the outdated kitchen was their starting point.
So Shen, a 26-year-old photographer, decided to search for some of the best deals around.
And with the help of family and friends, the couple have managed to give their entire kitchen a makeover for just £5,000.
Shen explains: “For £5,000 we managed to replace the sink, worktops, floor, tiles, appliances, shelving and lights. By researching alternatives rather than going with a company that would do everything for us, we managed to save around £10,000 in total.
“Searching online on sites such as eBay and Etsy, I was able to find cheaper alternatives. I also like thrift stores, so I would look in local stores and find ornaments.
The couple fitted all the shelving and did all the painting of the furniture and walls themselves, saving over £1,000.
They also saved a considerable amount of money by keeping the shell of the cupboards and shelves and simply replacing the doors and handles – instead of tearing it all out and starting over.
If we were to replace them entirely it would have cost them an additional £1000.
Also, instead of getting marble worktops, they opted for laminate which cost £350.
Now their cooking looks unrecognizable.
“We replaced all the doors and cupboard doors. We removed them and replaced them with MDF,” says Shen.
“We also have a pantry, so we have fitted shelves there to match the new worktops for glassware and cooking equipment. When replacing the doorknobs, I found a local seller on Etsy for them – which was much cheaper.
“We also built a boiler cover as I hate the way boilers look and it’s the first thing you see when you walk into the kitchen so we built cupboards around it to hide it.
“Then we replaced the floor with herringbone laminate flooring.”
Shen, who has always been interested in interior design, adds, “I think now you can see modern aspects coming out because the kitchen is navy blue, marble and gold.
“The brass sink was an amazing addition which I also found online, it was a bit more expensive at £300 but because we had saved so much on cupboards and shelving it worked well.”
Now that the kitchen is complete, the pair say the next project is the toilet.
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