Reader Redesign: Counters Of Steel

Today we’re working away on demo-ing out the old balcony where the new deck is going to go (since Mother Nature rained us out yesterday) so we hope to have more photos to share of our progress soon (Monday at the latest if all goes well!).


In the meantime, we thought this awesome budget-friendly kitchen idea was such a smart solution. We never really considered stainless steel counters, but after seeing Linn and her husband make it look so easy (and affordable) we’re definitely into it. Here’s Linn’s note:

I wanted to share a DIY tip for countertops which isn’t really that common, but it’s a great idea if you’re on a budget and you don’t mind doing some work yourself. When my husband and I renovated our kitchen we were able to get awesome looking stainless steel countertops for the bargain price of $400 (for a small 20 square foot counter). A big box hardware store quoted us $3,000 to put in and install basically the same thing!! Here are our old formica counters during our renovation:

We made a plywood template to the exact size of our counter and worked with a local sheet metal shop that cut and bended a piece of 20 gauge stainless steel around our plywood template.

Then we installed the plywood on top of our old Formica counters

… and added the steel on top of it (it’s covered in a protective sticker in this shot)

This option proved to be so much cheaper than many other materials around, so if anyone else is contemplating what type of counters to put in, and they don’t want to spend all of their budget on granite or marble, then I would highly recommend this method!

Stainless steel looks great, is super durable, and requires no maintenance whatsoever!

We really love how it turned out! – Linn

Obviously a lot of other great stuff went into Linn’s transformation, so hit up her blog for more details about everything – from those awesome stainless steel counters to the kitchen project as a whole. Have you guys considered stainless steel? Did you know you could get help from a local sheet metal shop to accomplish something like this for thousands less than buying stainless counters the traditional way?

UPDATE: Since a lot of the comments are asking about long-term care and durability of Linn’s counters, here’s a link to a post she did with her thoughts on it.

Psst- We announced this week’s giveaway winner, so click here to see if it’s you.


  1. says

    Wow, that’s a great transformation! I love the way the stainless steel counters look in her kitchen. And since the wrapped the plywood with them to give it the 1-1/2″ thickness it doesn’t look like a commercial stainless steel counter. It turned out to be a beautiful counter.

  2. Sherri says

    I LoVe this!! :)
    I’ve never understood why stainless steel isn’t used more often as a countertop. After working in the restaraunt business, I always thought it was such a great choice. I love the black and white in this kitchen, but you could easily incorporate more color in the room and it would look more festive for the color-lovers out there. Nice job!

  3. em says

    I love the counter and just about everything in this beautiful kitchen! But, please turn those knives in the other direction. I’m afraid someone is going to slice their arm open while reaching for a salad bowl from the cabinet . . .

  4. stephanie says

    that looks fantastic! However, I am wondering about scratching… We have a stainless steel sink and it has gotten pretty scratched up over the last couple of years… I would be too worried to have counters like that. I am just not careful enough!

  5. Erin says

    Was this kitchen featured on Apartment Therapy at some point? I swear I’ve seen this kitchen redo before! It looks awesome in any case! :)

  6. Meg says

    LOVE this. I really like the design of an industrial kitchen – maybe it’s because I build them for a living. We have great new granite counters in our new home but are considering stainless subway tile as a backsplash

  7. says

    LOVING stainless steel countertops right now. we have a stainless steel island (yep, like in restaurant kitchens!) and it’s so nice. you can cut on it, put hot things on it, it cleans easy… pretty much as good as granite (except not as expensive or pretty) wish i could do ALL my counters like this!!

  8. Sue says

    I have a stainless steel counter from a restaurant in my art studio. got it used and it was already kind of scratched, but it has a nice patina/worn in look to it and the used look doesn’t bother me a bit!

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