Before & After: A Kitchen “Held Together with Tape” Gets an Overdue DIY Remodel


Every square inch of this kitchen was ripped out and lovingly put back together — this time in a much more functional and stylish way — by the homeowners themselves. As designer Michelle Gage writes on her blog: “The floors were dirty and sticky. The appliances appeared to be original to the house. The counter tops were held together with tape.”

It took two years to save enough money to finally tackle this outdated kitchen’s remodel. But because they decided to go the complete DIY way, they were able to save money on labor costs and splurge a bit on some design elements (like the gorgeous Mercury Mosaics tile). The result is a bold, modern kitchen full of personality (and thankfully no longer full of sticky floors).

Alex and his willingness to work on the kitchen in his spare time played an integral part in the renovation’s success, according to Michelle.

“Alex, my handy husband, tackled this whole project himself — with minimal help. His ability to work his a** off after his 9-5 work allowed us to save a good bit,” wrote Michelle.

And though the final room is a dream kitchen, the remodel was not without challenges. In their house tour survey, Michelle describes the biggest challenge: “Renovating the kitchen after work — specifically, living without a sink for months while in project-mode.”

And though Alex is clearly an awesome husband for bringing this kitchen’s look into existence, not every project task was enjoyable for him: “…he has since vowed to never tile again. That’s the pits!” wrote Michelle.

You can actually see the kitchen’s entire renovation on the couple’s Instagram hashtag: #gagekitchenreno. A few process shots embedded below:

Above, it’s got to get worse before it gets better, right?

I love that the kitchen has a crisp, fresh blue and white palette. Above, some of the choices Michelle considered when picking the wall paint color.

A photo of the tiling in progress. Not shown: Alex saying he’ll never tile again. (You deserve a break after the great job here!)


See Alex and Michelle’s entire home in their house tour.

Thank you Michelle and Alex!

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