Apartment Friendly Kitchen Counter Makeover 1


before and after counters

Renters everywhere can understand the frustrations of living with various unappealing features, and being unable to make improvements.  Usually the small things like wall color can be taken care of and repainted, but bigger issues such as ugly floors or kitchen cabinets from 1963 are out of reach.

Maybe the kitchen counters are perfectly fine, but they just don’t do anything for you personally.  That was the case with ours.  The very light color, which was nearly white, (but upon closer inspection had a tinge of pink) was a nice contrast to the dark wood cabinets. However, they showed every last crumb.

I’m no neat freak, but after a month or so, it began driving me a little crazy that no matter how many times a day I wiped off the counters, they always looked dirty.  A few measly toast crumbs or coffee grounds stood out like tiny malfunctioning chameleons.

crazy colored lizard contrasted on wall

Austin found something online called faux granite, and we watched a little video demo with Rachel Ray.  It looked decent, it would hide the occasional stray crumb, and best of all, it is completely removable.  We applied a small test patch on an inconspicuous area of the counter to be sure that it came off.  I plugged in my hair dryer, and 3 seconds later I was able to 100% pull it off completely with no residue.

We ordered a 12-foot roll and spent about 4 hours putting it on the counters.  It was definitely not the easiest thing in the world to achieve. But we are very happy with how it came out, the kitchen looks far better, and my crumb problem has vanished! If you are willing to spend the time and effort, I think it’s worth it. Investigate here for ordering: Instant Granite Counter Top Cover Venecia Gold 36 x 144

black and white scary photo of beginng

Here are the main tools we used.


One of the best tricks we discovered to ease the installation process was the water spray bottle method. Since the film is so large, stiff, unwieldy and sticky, you will need to move and adjust it quite a bit while laying it down exactly where you want it to go.



1)   Girls: Tie your hair back in a pony-tail, or it will get stuck!


2)   Don’t try to lay it down in one continuous piece.  Divide it into sections, especially around the sink.  Plan ahead to line up the pattern so the sections appear seamless.


3)   Measure the area you want to cover, add an extra inch and then cut the film close to size before laying it down. Smaller pieces are easier to work with.


4)   Spray the water lightly to prevent instant adhesion, but not so much that water becomes trapped underneath and you have to squeegee it out later.


5)   There will be some air bubbles, don’t stress over them. A tiny pin-prick and a flat plastic tool will get rid of them all.



Every hour or so, we took a 5 minute break. It’s good to take a step back, breathe, have some lemonade and check out your progress. I also took to decorating Austin with the extra little pieces.


I look headless in this picture. Maybe I was too focused on cutting precisely, and didn’t notice.

Before and After Photos:

before sink and stove

after sink and stove

whole kitchen before

whole kitchen after

coffee corner before

kitchen counter makeover

I’m glad we got it done, and that I don’t have to do it again! It looks nice, and is an improvement that I’m happy to live with for the duration of our stay.


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