I have realized that every time I post a picture of my kitchen island, people want to know where I purchased it from.  And although I did purchase it from a big box store, I always have a hard time wanting to tag it because I did so many changes to it that you wouldn’t even recognize it.  And I did write one blog post on what I did to it, but again I realized I wasn’t all that thourough in explaining it step by step, so I thought I would go into a little more detail.  First of all though, if you want to see the original post and the link to where the original island can be purchased, you can find that here.

So the original island is from Bed, Bath, and Beyond and is made by Real Simple.  It looked like this when I purchased it..

island3 I picked this island because of both look and functionality.  I liked that it had a lot of storage, was larger than my current island, and only had a price tag of $300, and with an additional 20% off it came to under $250, a great price when I had been looking around.

The things I did not like about the island were:

*  the casters (they looked cheap)

*  the blonde butcher block (it looked unfinished and too light)

*  the lack of character

* the modern pulls

All of this was easily changeable though, in my mind:)  So I’ll start with the casters.  I took them off and added on some small bun feet that I actually had from an ottoman.  You can find bun feet literally at any home improvement store though, and they are usually around $7-$15/piece.  I was happy I had some that I could re-use so it kept the cost low:)

IMG_5775 They just gave it more of a classic look, rather than a cheap silver caster kind of look:)  I honestly have forgotten how I attached them, but I think I used furniture feet hardware also located at a home improvement store.  I would flip the thing over to look, but truth be told that seems like too much work right now at 36 weeks preggers:)  I know they are screwed in though, and there is hardware for that!

Next, I wanted to add character.  If you look at the stock photo, you will realize they had edging pieces on the corners and a piece that went down the back, that was raised from the existing paneling.  This made it super easy to glue and nail on some of my handy dandy 1/4″ luann plywood that I use on all of my planking projects.  All I had to do was cut it to size and stick it in.  I had a lot of left over pieces, so I was able to reuse what I had and complete that part in about 10 minutes!

IMG_5774 And easy 4 1/2 pieces of plywood planks and this side was done.

IMG_5773 The middle vertical piece is the piece I was talking about, the piece that was already there. I just had to patch in the strips to the right and left of it.

I did end up painting the whole cabinet in my Benjamin Moore Simply White color so the planks would match, and the color it orginally came was a little creamy and really shiny, so I do think that helped to make it look more custom.

The character was getting there. I didn’t love how the side of the island hung down, and it looked to narrow in my kitchen down anyway, so I decided to use these corbels from Menards that you can find in their shelving section for I believe $3-$4 a piece…I can’t remember, to permanently hold the top up.

IMG_5778 I screwed them right in.  You can see that there is a tiny 1/4″ gap between the counter and the top of the corbel at the 90 degree angle because of how the countertop sits, but that didn’t bug me.  The kids lean on this all the time and we haven’t had any issues with it moving yet!

The last thing to do was to stain the butcher block a color that suited my house more and add hardware that as well, was more “farm house” look.

I used Minwax special walnut, mixed about 50/50 with Minwax classic gray to get the right color.  It is not as dark as my last island top, and I liked that since this was a bigger space..

IMG_5779 I also stenciled my circa back on, just for a unique touch. I didn’t seal the top of the island with anything, and it has held up great.  I used to be afraid to cut on it, until my friend came over and started chopping away, and I realized how practical it is;)  And the marks on the top only add more lived in worn look anyway, which I really like!

And the last thing, the new hardware..

IMG_5777 These are the same pulls I used on my buffet in the dining room from Pottery barn.  They were $10/each, but since I only needed 2, it wasn’t bad.  I filled the nail holes on the doors from where the vertical bar was and added cheap knobs from Menards.  I also added this metal towel bar which proved to be the perfect length, from Ikea.

IMG_5782 and I believe it was only a few dollars as well! Score:)  The huge wooden one just wasn’t cutting it for me.

So that’s the story of my kitchen island.  Hopefully that helped clear a few things up!  Here’s the before…

island3 and the after…

IMG_5783 Much better…




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  1. My absolute favorite by far. And I have been looking for a long time. Great job. Thanks for sharing and I hope the growing family is doing well. God Bless……

  2. Hi! This is beautiful, and I’ve been thinking about doing something similar to a stock piece. How did you glue/nail the boards to the stock piece? Did you nail it from the inside? Any tips would be so appreciated! Thanks so much!

    – Ali

    1. I just used 3/4′ nails with a finish nailer and glued and nailed the pieces on from the outside:) I don’t mind small nail holes, and most of them get filled in with paint:)

  3. Are the pulls black or a dark bronze? Love the makeover! It inspired me to do a makeover because all the island I loved were $800 and up! I convertd a coffee table into an island!

  4. I need you to visit me after your baby is born and we can do the island together!!!☺💟
    Receiving this island update is so serendipitous. I was praying you would soon see all the comments and post a tutorial!! I just ordered it and my cabinets are going in Monday. Life is upside down but I can see the light!!! Thanks again for the diy island ! Tell me about your stencil, I’d like a pretty S, did you buy the stencil?💌💟

    1. Aww…..yay! So glad it came at a good time for you:) And congrats to your baby! I made the stencil myself. I just printed out the numbers using modern number 20 font and cut it out. If you only use it once, paper works good for a stencil. Just make sure to buy a good stencil brush and dab off the extra paint very good before put it on your stencil, or else it will bleed;)

      1. Thanks!!! Island arrived and my son and husband are putting it together! Did you just putty the holes you didn’t need and as much as I love the planning, that may have to wait!! Also, before you painted with your white, did you send or go right over their glossy paint??

  5. I know everyone is asking about the stools for your island.
    They are from Target. I can’t find them. Do you know what they are called? You are very talented. Love your home.

    1. The stools are acutally on the right hand side of my blog under the “target picks” column. If you click on them it should take you right to them! Thanks for the sweet comment:)

  6. I love it!
    Do you have the dimensions of the plywood pieces you cut to put in there? On both the back panels and side panel?

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