I’ve been up to a few changes around here.  And I’ve had them done for awhile, I just haven’t shared them yet.  Why? You ask?  Welp, mostly because that requires me to have a clean kitchen, long enough to snap photos, and get them uploaded and on the the blog.  A task that has proven quite hard these last few months with a crawling babe around:)

There you have it . True life.  My kitchen is not always spotless.  “gasp”

But, I finally got around to getting a few pics so I thought I would show you what I’ve been up to.  We have had this island in the house since close to when we moved in.



and I loved it.  I did.  I loved the chunky butcher block and the fun legs.  But what I didn’t love about it was it didn’t provide much storage…..or counter top space.  So I was on the hunt for something new.  I was looking in a Real Simple magazine and found one that was quite cute at Crate and Barrel.  It looked like this..



Cute huh?  But at $500 I just didn’t want to commit. So I went online and googled it to see if I could find it cheaper, and I came across this one at Bed, Bath, and Beyond.

island3 Although the Crate and barrel one was a bit cuter, this one was super similar, made by the same company, and almost half the cost at $299.  Plus, I could use a 20% off coupon which made it only $240.  Less than half the cost!

I really love the look of islands that don’t look like islands.  Like old farmhouse tables, unique consoles, or something of the sort….but truth is, they aren’t super functional.  Yes, I said that Ryan!  Every once and awhile I do look at function:)  This would provide great storage.  It had a divider in one side for trays, cookie sheets, and pans, along with a pull out drawer, and the other side has two shelves.  It added huge amounts of closed off storage.  What I didn’t like was that it looked so “stock” ish, if you know what I mean.

The casters were really corny, the handles were way too modern, and the top was unfinished.  So, a little DIY was in the works.  I ended up planking the bottom, changing the hardware, adding corbels, and staining the top.  I also took off the casters and added feet to the bottom.  This is what I came up with…

IMG_5593 A little less modern and a little more farmhouse-ish.

I also decided that I liked the counter top fully extended at all times, so I actually screwed the corbels in and made it permanent.  I was surprised to find out I could also add a few stools to it.  A great place for the kids to eat breakfast or work on school.  I knew I needed the stools to be really shallow to allow space to walk through, and found these stools on target.com.  They have proven to be the perfect stool.  They scoot in nicely, have a little lip in the back to hold up the toddler, and wipe up beautifully:)



I’m fully aware my chalkboard still says spring.  That’s about how it is around here.  A few steps behind:)



I also switched out the ugly wood towel holder for a metal one I found at Ikea.



You’ll notice there are a few more black pops as well.  I must say, I loved both looks when I look back at previous pics, but I think the black makes it look a little more farm house as well.  And if you follow me on Instagram, you saw a preview pic of my new chalkboard..



I just switched out the font once I saw Jo Jo’s on Instagram titled Market List.



So we now have a little more functional space.  Another seating area, and a larger counter top.  Sometimes functionality does win over style, but at least there are still ways to “tweak” to make something your own.






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  1. Chantelle Willett

    Hi Allie,
    Your kitchen looks so wonderful, I just love your style.
    Could I ask where you purchased the glass display on the island – the mason jar and iron tree display.
    This works great when you have limited cupboard space for cups.
    Thank you,

  2. Love the lighting! Where did you get the black pendants? I have seen similar or maybe the same at IKEA but they were not black… more of a very dark gray.

  3. Hi! Looks great!! Did you paint the entire piece after adding the planking? or just paint the planking?
    Love this!

        1. I don’t think the true shiplap would work because it’s too thick. The planking is only 1/4″ so it stays within the trimwork on the existing island.

  4. I love what you did with this island! I have to ask though, because we will be renovating soon, does it get in the way? I’m worried about having something in between my stove and sink. What are your thoughts now that you’ve lived with for a while? Thanks and great job!

    1. I was used to having a small island there, so it took a little getting used to but wasn’t bad. I would have loved if our kitchen was a foot wider for a bit more space, but overall I”m super happy with the extra counter top and seating. The kiddos use the stools all the time:)

  5. This is going to be my weekend project! What did you use to plank the side and back is the island? Love this by the way!!

  6. Love the look you created! I am looking for a black metal glass drying rack like the one on your island. Can you share where you found yours? I love the size and shape.

  7. I love they way you made this look!! This is exactly my style. I was wondering how got and put the planking on? I would love to do something like this but I’m not sure exactly how you did it.
    Thanks! Your home is beautiful!!

      1. Hi Allie,
        I fully intend to copy your design b/c it is exactly what we are looking for in our tiny kitchen. I am new to DIY & a bit clueless. I would like to plank the island as well. Could you kindly provide a little more detail. Did you buy planks at the hardware store? Did you nail them to the original back or did you remove the original back? Thanks!

        1. lol…copying is the highest form of flattery so I am honored:) I actually cut down my own planks out of 1/4′ plywood, or called luann at menards or home depot. I cut them into 5″ strips. I nailed them right to the wood panels on the island and didn’t use glue this time, although you sure could. Mine have held up great so far, I haven’t noticed them move:) The island has great insets for the planking to go so you don’t have to do much and it looks like it’s always been there!:) Best of luck!!

  8. Love this island. Totally want to copy. Can you share where you got the legs for the island instead of wheels? Also, the hardware that comes on the original cart looks like 12″ long.. Were the holes already in the wood? If so how did you cover them up? Where did you find the corbels? And last question.. How long is the towel bar you used? Sorry for all the questions but truly love your makeover. Thanks:)

    1. Thanks for your comment:) I actually filled the holes from the hardware with wood filler. The corbels are from Menards in the shelving section….super cheap:) And the feet I stole off of an ottoman I had, but I’m sure you could find something similar at Home depot, they have quite a few options:) The towel bar came from Ikea. I will have to measure it and get back to you:)

  9. Allie, I love what you did with this island! Question…did you have to do any sanding/stripping to the top before you stained it? Also, how did you attach the new feet?

    1. Hi Susan. No, the top was quite raw, so I just stained right over it. I never applied a top coat or poly of any kind and it has held up great! Also, I’m trying to remember how I attached the feet:) haha…I think I got furniture feet hardware at Menards and screwed them in! I’m losing it!! :)

  10. Hey! I love this makeover! I was wondering where you got your original island? I need something super small and I love your little one that you had! Thanks so much!

  11. You did a great job giving it some extra style and it looks like it will be a very functional piece as well. Love your kitchen. I made a big chalkboard for our kitchen last week and just seasoned it today. I like your market list script.

  12. Love this! The planking on the island is brilliant! Did you paint your chalkboard on your wall then frame it out or make the chalkboard and hang it?? 2 more ideas I’m going to have to “borrow” from you! 😉

  13. Allie, KUDOS to you for a wonderful island makeover! I love all the details that you added. I also love your black stools.
    Was there already a recessed area on the side? If not how did you add that? It is amazing!

    1. There was that area, it originally just folded down and then you could put it up. The corbels swung in and out. I took those off and added permanent corbels:) Thanks for the sweet comment!

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