Ideas for DIY Kitchen Islands

by Charlene A. Marrero 06/13/2022

Islands are a common feature in homes, but not all kitchens have them. Kitchen islands offer extra counter space for preparing food, eating meals and doing other tasks. Some islands also have cabinets or shelves for added storage. If your kitchen doesn’t have an island, you can build your own. Whether you’re interested in constructing a large island or a small and simple one, keep the following ideas in mind.

Rustic Kitchen Island

If your home has a rustic or farmhouse design, your kitchen island should match the rest of your interior. You can build a kitchen island out of wood and give it a barn door design. Use wood with a more natural look rather than wood with a polished look. To add more visual appeal to your kitchen island, consider using a slab of metal for the top. The combination of wood and metal creates a rustic look that adds charm to your kitchen.

Decorative Woodwork

Kitchen islands don’t need to have a simple, streamlined design. You can use decorative pieces of wood to give your kitchen island some creative flair. Make your kitchen island out of decorative molding, wood columns, barn wood and other interesting pieces of wood. You can mix and match these different pieces of wood, and paint them white or another color that complements the rest of your kitchen’s design.

Trash Storage Island

A kitchen island provides a great place to hide your trash can. When you build your kitchen island, include an area with a door that opens at the top. You can place your trash can inside this area, then open the door at the top to throw garbage in it. Having a kitchen island with trash storage frees up space in your kitchen while also keeping your trash can out of sight. This design can also come in handy when you use your kitchen island for chopping vegetables and doing other meal prep tasks.

Desk or Bookcase Island

When building a DIY kitchen island, you don’t have to start from scratch. Consider repurposing an old desk or bookcase that you don’t use anymore. You can paint or refinish an old desk and add a piece of wood on the top of it to make your island as long as you want. If you have an old bookcase, you can paint or refinish it, add a top and use the shelves for storage. For a more open design, you can remove the back of the bookcase before turning it into an island. This allows you to reach items from either side as needed.

About the Author

Charlene A. Marrero

Charlene is proud to say she was born and raised in Westchester County. Since her family's ties go way back all along the Hudson River, there was always a reason to stay local. Her grandfather built bungalow homes and colonies in Putnam County and Northern Westchester County back in the day when folks wanted a simple weekend retreat from NYC. Having her father employed by General Motors' Tarrytown car manufacturing plant as Chief of Fire and Safety and her mother a school teacher in Dutchess County, her family's base was Cortlandt Manor, but connections go far North and South all along the Hudson River. The Fashion Industry was the start of Charlene's career with Manhattan Industries Henry Grethal after graduating from the Laboratory Institute of Fashion Merchandising. Charlene's career continued with top designer Tadashi Shoji in Sales and Merchandising. In 1995 she settled her own family in the River Town of Ossining, NY to raise her two sons to be closer to NYC's Fashion District. She decided in 2001 to persue a career in real estate with Coldwell Banker in order to be closer to her family. In 2008 she heard about a group of 5 distinguished woman having just starting their own company for about a year being managed by someone she long admired in the industry, Marcene Hedayati as the Broker/Owner. The rest is history as Charlene joined Legends Realty Group in 2008 as one of 16 agents. She has been a part of the growth as the company has flourished to be over 75+ agents and today being known as Corcoran Legends Realty.