Open kitchen with cedar colored cabinetry, gas range, cream countertops, and a window with a valance.

How to Inexpensively Upgrade to Rustic Kitchen Cabinets

The kitchen is the heart of the home, and it’s often the room where families congregate, so it’s essential that the kitchen feels welcoming and cozy. 

There are many different kitchen styles that people like. While some people turn toward industrial or modern kitchens, others appreciate the farmhouse-style kitchen as it can bring back memories of growing up. Additionally, many people enjoy the look and feel of a rustic kitchen. If you’re one of those looking to upgrade your cabinets to a rustic style, we have some tips for doing so inexpensively. 

The budget is the primary consideration for people trying to transform a kitchen into a rustic space. Often, the most significant expense in the budget is trying to get the “bones” of the kitchen into this style.

Kitchen cabinets and countertops are easily a focal point of the kitchen space. Planning to make these appear rustic is a primary consideration. Without having these in order, the smaller décor items you purchase won’t look as nice. Consider these tips as you’re transforming your kitchen cabinets to create a rustic space. 


Need help making some kitchen cabinet improvements? Contact us online or call 480-641-9611. One of our cabinet experts will come to your home for a same-day, no-obligation quote to refinish, reface, or remodel your kitchen cabinets. 


Refinish Countertops

Many modern kitchens feature marble or granite countertops. While these are beautiful, they may not work well with a simple rustic kitchen. Instead of having these modern countertops, it might be better to have wooden or even basic stone countertops.

It’s possible to refinish countertops in some cases. This might ruin the original countertop, so you must ensure that you don’t do this if there’s a chance you’ll want to go back to the original countertops. Another option is to cut basic wooden countertops and then put a custom finish or coating on them to give you the look you want for the rustic kitchen.

Use Chicken Wire Instead of Glass or Wood Insert Panels

A simple way to update the look of the kitchen and provide a more rustic look is to install chicken wire in the cabinet doors instead of wooden or glass inserts. This gives it an open appeal that has a country-living appeal to it. Remember to protect the cabinet door frame, including the crossbars, if you want to keep those behind the chicken wire.

To give the kitchen cabinets a completely different look, consider adding framing to the cabinet door outside the chicken wire. Simple scalloped framing can give the cabinet door a more authentic rustic feel.

You can enhance this look by adding open shelving to other areas of the kitchen. These can be places where you show off knickknacks or store decorative items. If you have a buffet in the kitchen, update it, too, so it doesn’t look out of place in the farmhouse kitchen.

Replace Cabinet Pulls and Knobs

Rustic-style cabinets don’t have polished pulls or knobs. Consider using rubbed finishes or even matte finishes. Look at the style and color to determine if they match the rustic appeal. The most common colors for knobs and pulls in a rustic kitchen are white, black, brown, and grey.

Rustic kitchens have simple knobs and pulls. Nothing ornate will work in this space, so consider rounded or squared options. This is one of the least expensive ways to update the look of a kitchen to a rustic one.

One unique option that some people might consider is using knobs or pulls that feature the kitchen theme. For example, finding one that has a chicken might work if you have chicken décor throughout the space.

Change Cabinet Shelving Style

Trendy couple peeling and cutting fresh vegetables from the market in rustic kitchen
Adding open wooden shelving can help create a rustic kitchen aesthetic.

When you redo the kitchen, look at the shelves in the kitchen. Glass or stainless steel shelves will probably look out of place in a rustic kitchen. Wood is usually the best option. If you don’t want new shelves crafted, you can probably revamp the current shelves by finding a coating or finish that will look nice in your new rustic kitchen. There are even some sticky sheet protectors that might be suitable for this aspect of redoing the cabinet shelving.

Redo the Kitchen Cabinets

The cabinets are one of the most important changes you can make in a kitchen to make it appear rustic. These can be painted or refinished to give you the look you want for the room. This project can be a major undertaking, so you must be sure to work with someone who knows what they’re doing.

There are three options for redoing cabinets. Each of these is a little different, so you must determine the best option for you. Cabinet Coatings of America can help you select the best option for your situation.

  • Cabinet refinishing: Cabinet refinishing involves refreshing the doors and cabinet boxes that are already in the home. This can give them a new, fresh look without the expense of having to get all-new cabinets.
  • Cabinet refacing: Cabinet refacing changes the exterior look of the cabinets by refacing the doors and visible parts of the cabinet boxes. Some people prefer this option because it’s cost-effective and durable.

Cabinet remodeling: Cabinet remodeling involves completely changing the cabinets in your home. A custom cabinet design is created, and the cabinets are made according to those specifications. This can give the kitchen area a new look and new functionality. 

Want To Upgrade Your Kitchen Cabinets?

Schedule an appointment online or call us at 480-641-9611. Our finishing pros will talk with you about the kind of kitchen improvements you want to make, then give you a free in-home or virtual consultation. We’ll help you bring a little life back into your kitchen. 


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co-owner
Chuck Derouen

For 20 plus years chuck has been helping homeowners make decisions on how to bring new life into their kitchens. Most homeowners know what they want but don’t know how to communicate it. When chuck does the in-home consultation he draws from the client and uses his expertise to help them bring their imagination to life (achieve the look they imagine.) Chuck dubs himself a “professional mind maker upper.”

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