Rustic Kitchen Transformation Progress

Andrew and I finished the sink/window area of the builder-basic to rustic kitchen transformation we’re working on over here. I find myself staring at it all the time, whether I’m in the kitchen, dining room, or family room; it’s adorable and I just gaze at it’s glory.

How to transform a builder-grade kitchen to a rustic kitchen with simple updates!

There are so many moving parts to this kitchen (and really, the whole house), so let me first tell you our goal while building the farmhouse, was to skip upgrades unless they were things we couldn’t or didn’t want to do later. This included the porch, a cabinetry upgrade (which was technically free), plumbing in the basement, and a recessed lighting package in the kitchen; but there is a full detailed list right here you can check out!

The overall plan for the kitchen is to paint the cabinets, add a tile backsplash, upgrade the faucet, add a quartz counter top, and somehow retrofit our salvaged antique sink. Obviously, this is the long-term plan for major improvements and additions, because we need new rugs first. Thanks, kiddos!

Sidebar, have y’all seen on Pinterest where people have built up their cabinetry with moldings to the ceiling? Yes, please.


We put in a temporary backsplash (I’m a sloppy chef – I’ll be sharing the whole thing soon!), and decided to add some character to the plain window with some barn flooring, a faux barn wood shelf with some corbels, and a rustic kitchen caged light.

How to transform a builder-grade kitchen to a rustic kitchen with simple updates!

(Some links below are affiliate links for your convenience. When you make a purchase through the links, I get a commission and it costs you nothing extra!)

Rustic Kitchen Pendant Light

We had a recessed light above the sink, but it was totally pointless. And ugly. I heard about these light kits that literally screw in where the lightbulb goes. Obviously grabbed one, screwed it in, wrapped the extra wire, and snapped the cover on. Literally a 10 minute update.

Rustic Kitchen Pendant Light - The perfect 5 minute update!

I got the Portfolio Bronze Pendant Light Conversion Kit, with the Portfolio Cage Pendant shade. Perfect pair, perfect fit, and the edison bulb is perfection! There are so many options with this, so get creative! I wanted to make a shade from an old wisk, but my husband talked me out of it and got me this beauty instead.

Rustic Kitchen Pendant Light - The perfect 5 minute update!

Faux Barn Wood Rustic Kitchen Shelf

Let me take a hashtag shelfie! That’s a thing on Instagram – I’m not even kidding, it’s real. Don’t ask how I know that, but it is. Here’s my shelf, which looks very much like some old wood, but it’s not! I painted and stained a piece of pine to look like weathered wood. Isn’t it beautiful?

This faux barnwood painting technique looks amazing in this rustic kitchen!
I just used some renegade brown stain with some layers of white paint. Then I really just rubbed it all in, and wiped the extra off. I love love this process, it really makes the wood look fantastically old!

This faux barnwood painting technique looks amazing in this rustic kitchen!

These corbels are cute little things I took extra-thick homemade chalk paint to, to add some texture. You know, lumps and bumps. Nook and crannies.

This faux barnwood painting technique looks amazing in this rustic kitchen!

Ooh, you can see my backsplash right there, y’all!

Rustic Kitchen Window Valance

There is a little shop near us (in Lancaster PA) called Carson’s in the Corn Fields. It has some flipped pieces and some junkin’ pieces; there’s always an amazing selection of salvaged barn floors and barn wood, shutters, architectural salvage, and hundreds of doors at any given time.


I have a ton of this wood all over the house, posing as small open shelving pieces, but we had these two pieces leftover, and I knew they would be perfect to add a little more interest over the window area. It’s just screwed in. Nothing fancy. Do it! I want another few pieces to beef it up a little more, but if I can’t find any more in the shop, I’ll be happy if it just stays like this.

Rustic Kitchen Backsplash – Sneak Peek!

I know you notice my new (fancy?) backsplash! I’ll be discussing how to install this amazing stuff in the upcoming weeks, but I just wanted to mention that it’s a temporary solution (until we switch countertops) , and it’s Smart Tiles! Make sure you sign up for the newsletter so you’re the first to know when it’s posted!

How to transform a builder-grade kitchen to a rustic kitchen with simple updates!

shop the look (affiliate links)

These updates were so easy, and simple, and most importantly – affordable!  I’m so happy to be joining some blogging friends in a kitchen round-up, so you can get more ideas on how to update your kitchen, on a budget! Please be sure to pin and share, and check out these awesome ideas!!


  1. GO-GEOUS, girlfriend!!! Those corbels are amazing and your light fixture is pure perfection! I cannot wait to see what you do with your backsplash!! ?

  2. Kim, I love your barn wood header and the faux barn wood shelf. I have to give that faux technique a try, maybe in my guest bath. The light conversion kit is beautiful and I love the open wire for the shade.

    I remember seeing your salvaged sink post, I can’t wait to see it in your kitchen, it will be fabulous and I will die with envy!! Oh, and your manicure is awesome, you are a girl after my heart with paint all over your hands. I have boxes of gloves but sometimes forget to use them until it’s too late.

  3. We’re in Lancaster Co are you? I’m in Litiz. Small world. Our kitchens are similar. Like the shelf idea – looking into adapting it into our kitchen.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *