Sometimes I feel like a rental kitchen is one of those spaces that really sucks the creativity out of you. You’re pretty much stuck with some of the things that your landlord “picked out” – especially for you….

But after doing a little research, it turns out that there are quite a few easy, temporary, and budget-friendly options (besides painting your walls) to help make you feel like you live in a super stylish space!

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Add a Backsplash: I’m convinced that adding a mosaic glass tile or natural stone tile can really change up the look of your kitchen. It can actually make your space look like your own!

Looks like a waaay cooler space, right?

SmartTiles.pngIf you’re worried about how hard it’ll be to take off though, you can also opt for a product called Smart Tiles. They’re peel and stick panels, and it requires no grout. They have some really beautiful options on their site, so check it out and see if this is a better product for you!

Photo: Bellagio Marmo 

Photo Source: Smart Tiles

You can pick up Smart Tiles at a Home Depot or Lowe’s, or order online through Smart Tiles or through Wayfair. It’s not a heavy product so shipping shouldn’t be a big issue.

For natural stone or glass mosaic tiles, your shopping options in Saudi are: Between 16th and 18th Street on King Khalid Street, and Abyat

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Change the Hardware: Some of the rental homes have some seriously sad looking hardware, so add some (if you don’t have any) or change it up!


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Photo Source: IKEA

Shopping Options in Saudi: Besides IKEA, you can try looking at Abyat, in Dammam there are lots of stores behind the SAS warehouse that have a variety of knobs and fixtures. On the Stores To Check Out tab, scroll down to Arabian SAS for a map of the area. 

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Add a Kitchen Trolley: If you’re lacking some counter space, consider buying a kitchen trolley or small island. Not everyone’s kitchen is large enough but if you have an extra wall, you can always make it into a super pretty coffee station!

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I love Erlina’s coffee station up against her amazing chalkboard wall!
Small Islands at Creative Home

Shopping Options in Saudi: Kitchen trolleys are fairly easy to find at IKEA and at SACO, but for something more fancy (also more expensive), check out Ashley Furniture or Creative Home in Dhahran Mall. If you can’t find the right size, you should also consider having one made with a butcher block, granite or marble top for a little glam in your life!

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Install some Wallpaper, Wall Decals or a Removable Wallpaper Lining: You can use wallpaper all over your kitchen or consider using it as just a backsplash! Spoonflower seems to be a popular option, and you can apparently design your own wallpaper too! Check out this Apartment Therapy post on 10 Sources for Removable Wallpaper.

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Doesn’t Stephanie’s backsplash wallpaper from Graham and Brown look amazing? And apparently, it’s really easy! You can quickly mix the paste, roll it on to the wall with a paint roller, and it should come off in the future in just one strip!

Shopping Options in Saudi: This is something you may be able to find in Khobar, but you may be better off shipping it in for variety’s sake!

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Change Up the Lighting: I wasn’t able to change my overhead lighting fixture, but I am so grateful for the integrated LED lighting that I got from IKEA. It was a cheap fix, can be plugged in, looks pretty, and has made a world of a difference when it comes to functionality as well. It also allows me to work in the kitchen without turning on the horrible cool white overhead lighting!

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Also, a little greenery can go a long way as well! Both pictures have some of the super cute IKEA artificial plants as decorative accents.
Or change the light fixture completely (especially if you have an existing fixture already there)!

Shopping Options in Saudi: You can use any overhead light fixture as long as the voltage and bulbs match! The integrated lighting options at IKEA are amazing, especially because they’re LEDs!

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Replace the Outlet Covers: A fun switch plate can be a great way of adding some character to any space, and is the perfect statement piece for your wall if you don’t have a backsplash. If you do have a backsplash, try to find a switch plate that matches your design! I would have so much fun with this…

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Photo Source: Houzz

Shopping Options in Saudi: Another thing you may need to order online. 

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Create Open Shelving: If you decide to take off your cupboard doors, you probably want to style your cupboards with some cute accessories. If you want to take it to the next level, consider painting the inside or adding a pretty wallpaper or lining to spruce up the look.

Argh love Zaza’s kitchen! This is what happens when you take the time to style your kitchen. Just do it for yourself if anything!
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Image Credit: Jacqueline Marque on Apartment Therapy

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Add a Small Rug or Runner: Small change, but with a HUGE impact. It doesn’t have to be expensive, but the right rug can make your kitchen feel so lively!

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OK yeah, some of our kitchens don’t even come close to looking like this, but you get the idea, right? Big impact. Photo Source: Colin Price Photography (far left), Unknown (center left), Domino (center right), Jamie Keskin Design on Simplified Bee (far right). 

Shopping Options in Saudi: For inexpensive runners or rugs, visit H&M Home in Al Rashid Mall or BasicXX in Dhahran Mall. Zara Home and IKEA have some lightweight options as well. You can always find a more ornate option at Desert Designs or some of the local rug stores in Khobar. It may be slightly more expensive but will add so much character!

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Decorate Your Walls: This could mean adding a chalkboard wall, pretty pictures, herbs, pretty pots – basically, anything that adds a little oomph to the space! I love these inspiration pictures for cool ideas…

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Photo Source: Chris Perez (far left), Hus & Hem (center left), Eat Well 101 (center right), IKEA USA (far right)

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Actually Style Your Kitchen: I know this sounds kinda silly, but putting out your favorite accessories, styling some fruits and veggies in cute bowls, or setting out pretty cookbooks on the counter can really make you feel better. Most of us are in the kitchen every day, so why shouldn’t it look nice? It makes me feel so good when I cook in a pretty kitchen!

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Image Credit: BlogLovin
Image Credit: Instagram account of Jobestead

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Happy Styling!