DIY - Kitchen Renovation All by Yourself - Step by Step - From Measurements to Installation

Are you looking for a way to give your kitchen a facelift without the hassle of hiring a professional contractor? Are you stressed about not having enough money for an extensive kitchen renovation but want a cost-effective solution? If so, this guide is just what you need!

As millennials, we know how overrated and expensive things can be. So why not take matters into our own hands and transform our kitchens ourselves? This comprehensive guide will walk you step-by-step through the entire process, from taking measurements to purchasing materials and tools. With this helpful guide in hand, creating your dream kitchen doesn’t have to be complicated or require lots of money!

How to Take the Measurements

Taking measurements for kitchen cabinets can be an intimidating task for first-timers, but with the right preparation and tools it can be done quickly and efficiently. Before you begin, make sure that your measuring tape is properly calibrated; an inaccurate reading could throw off all of your measurements leading to improper sized cabinet installation. 


Taking accurate horizontal measurements is an integral step in the process of installing kitchen cabinets. As such, it is important to be precise when taking measurements for a successful cabinet installation. Begin in one corner of an adjoining wall and move clockwise, measuring the wall at 36-inch height. Make sure to leave no room for error and measure every section of wall between two points, including around any appliances or windows you may encounter along the way.

After that, turn your attention to any openings that could be affected by your new cabinets, such as walls and windows, as well as any small wall sections.

Continue by noting the vertical measurements. Measure from the floor to the windowsill, then from the windowsill to the top of the window, and finally from the top of the window to the ceiling. Mark all of these at different points across the wall so that you can take an average measurement.

Additionally, make sure you factor in any obstructions like radiators, pipes, or vents which may disrupt your cabinetry plan. Mapping out or taking photos of your space before beginning to measure can be a great help when beginning this process.

Once you have those measurements, use them to decide what size cabinets will fit in the allotted space; then you are ready to measure any shelves or pre-existing cabinetry that may need to be replaced or relocated to accommodate the new cabinetry!

Planning a Kitchen Layout

When planning a kitchen, choosing the right layout is essential. The layout of your kitchen can have a significant impact on how the room is utilized and how workflows are managed. An efficiently designed kitchen can enhance workflow and produce a more usable work area. 


Additionally, understanding how to make use of the available space, from fitting in cabinets and appliances to creating designated areas for food prep or seating, is key for achieving an enjoyable cooking experience. As such, careful thought should be put into selecting a layout that best serves your needs and lifestyle.

  • One wall kitchen layout: A one wall kitchen layout is characterized by appliances like the refrigerator and sink placed against a single wall. The centralized design eliminates the need to walk back and forth between cabinets, allowing for an open flow of movement while preparing meals. With this design, counter space is maximized, creating a more functional cooking experience. 
  • L-shaped kitchen layout: A L-shaped kitchen layout is a classic option for homeowners looking to maximize the efficiency of their cooking space. Often consisting of two perpendicular walls, it creates an optimal work triangle between the fridge, stove, and sink and allows for plenty of counter space on either side of the walls. 
  • Galley kitchen layout: The galley kitchen layout is an efficient use of space and is popular for small and narrow spaces. It consists of two rows of counters opposite of each other with a walkway in between providing access to the counters on either side.
  • U-shaped kitchen layout: This type of kitchen layout features three walls that are made up of cabinets and appliances, connected at corners – in the shape of a “U”. The configuration allows for a comfortable workflow and efficient execution of tasks. This setup allows for the cook to be in the middle of all their supplies and tools, such as dishwasher, refrigerator and drawers full of utensils.
  • Kitchen island: A kitchen layout with an island is one of the most popular designs today. It features a central unit, usually accompanied by a countertop and base cabinets, placed in the middle of the kitchen space. This freestanding structure provides extra storage and preparation space, along with an additional eating area for quick meals or entertaining. 
  • Kitchen peninsula: A peninsula kitchen layout is a popular choice for small spaces, as it allows for the integration of dining and cooking without requiring additional space. This type of kitchen is shaped like a horseshoe, with countertop space extending out to one or two walls to create an island-style workspace.

Kitchen Work Triangle


A kitchen work triangle is an efficient design concept used when planning a kitchen layout. This concept seeks to create a seamless traffic flow within a kitchen area by connecting the three most used areas – the refrigerator, the sink and the stove. 


To achieve this effective triangular shape, ideally each side should measure between 4 and 9 feet to allow for maximum efficiency when cooking. By having all of these vital locations close together, it not only saves time but also reduces frustration commonly associated with juggling multiple activities in other kitchen arrangements. 


Therefore, making sure all necessary appliances are within this triangle ensures convenience and enables cooks to maximize the efficiency of their kitchen environment.

How to Get a Free 3D Kitchen Design

Trying to make a layout decision for your dream kitchen can be difficult and stressful. And when you consider the kitchen triangle concept, it can be even more difficult to figure out the correct layout for your particular needs and wants. Do not worry, though – Nelson Cabinetry offers free 3D kitchen design, so you can bring your dream kitchen to life without spending a fortune.

Our process is simple: first, take measurements of your kitchen space and send us pictures with a detailed description of what you would like. Then our team of industry-leading professionals will provide you with a fully rendered 3D design within 24 hours.


If you are looking to update your home with modern cabinets, ordering them online can be a good option. But before making a purchase, it’s important to do some research and consider several factors:


When you’re ordering anything online, it’s always a good idea to check the reviews first. This is especially true when it comes to something as important as your kitchen cabinets. Take some time to read through the reviews of any cabinet company you’re considering before placing your order. Pay attention to both positive and negative reviews, and look for any common themes.

Lead Time

One of the most important things to consider when ordering kitchen cabinets online is the lead time. Lead time is the amount of time that it will take for your cabinets to be manufactured and delivered to you. Many online cabinet companies have a standard lead time of 4-6 weeks, but it is always best to check with the company to be sure.

Shipping Costs

Another thing to consider when ordering kitchen cabinets online is shipping costs. Most online cabinet companies will charge a flat rate for shipping, but it is always best to check with the company to be sure.

Cabinet Styles

When ordering kitchen cabinets online, you will need to choose from a variety of styles. The most popular styles include shaker, raised panel, and flat panel. You should also decide whether you want your cabinets to be made from solid wood or laminate. Click here to learn more about the latest kitchen cabinet trends.

Cabinet Materials

When it comes to choosing materials for cabinetry, many folks find themselves debating between mdf (medium-density fiberboard) and plywood. Mdf is a composite material created from wood strands, wax and resin, while plywood is composed of thin sheets laid crosswise and glued together. 

If strength and durability are the primary concerns when selecting cabinets, then plywood should be the material of choice. Plywood is more reliable than mdf since it is made up of cross-grained layers making for a sturdier piece with increased stability. Its construction also means fewer chances of warping or cracks over time.

So if you’re looking for a sturdy and high-end cabinet option, consider checking out Nelson Cabinetry’s selection of plywood cabinets.


Of course, one of the most important things to consider when ordering kitchen cabinets online is price. Kitchen cabinets can range in price from a few hundred dollars to several thousand dollars depending on the style, material, size, and accessories that you choose.


If you’re unsure about a particular color or finish, see if the company offers samples that you can order. This way, you can see firsthand how the cabinets will look in your kitchen before making a final decision.


Now that you ordered your new kitchen cabinets, it’s time to assemble them. Most cabinets can be assembled by following these simple steps.

  • Organize your materials – unpack cabinets and organize your tools.
  • Start assembling the cabinets with the door frame.
  • Add a side panel to the door frame.
  • Add the second panel to the door frame.
  • Add the cabinet floor.
  • Add the back panel.
  • Add the kickplate. 
  • Add shelf clips.
  • Assemble the drawer box.
  • Attach undermount runners to the drawer box.
  • Attach drawer glide supports to the back panel.
  • Install drawer and attach glides to drawer back.
  • Install a drawer.
  • Add corner or wood brackets

Our youtube channel provides helpful video guides for anyone who needs assistance with cabinet assembly. If you’re unfamiliar with this type of project, it can often be an intimidating task. Our comprehensive videos provide easy-to-follow instructions and break the process down into understandable steps to ensure success.

Base Cabinets

Wall Cabinets

Lazy Susan

Oven Tall Cabinet

Blind Base Corner Cabinet


Wall Diagonal Corner Cabinet


Installing RTA cabinets is a relatively easy task once they have been assembled. You can follow these steps or watch our video tutorial!

Wall Cabinets

Installing wall cabinets after assembling them is done by drilling holes through the cabinet at the top, middle, and bottom rails. To ensure the cabinets are secure, these holes should be around 3/4″ from each edge of the cabinet while still allowing enough room for screws to fit snugly without being overtightened. For optimal efficiency, wall cabinets should be installed starting from the corner of a room


A twist drill bit can be used to make sure the holes line up with any face frames that may present themselves. Once all the holes have been lined up, start connecting all of the cabinets together using screws. For maximum security it is best to install wall cabinets first and work down from there.

Base Cabinets

Begin at a corner, drilling holes on the wall for mounting and angling the cabinet before tightening it into place. Work with two guide points – a vertical line on the wall and a horizontal line on the floor which should match up with your cabinet measurements. Use screws to hold each of them in place firmly but not too tight or they can warp in time. When installing base cabinets in any room, it is essential to begin at the corner. 


If installing around a sink, use a twist bit to create holes for pipes in the back of the cabinet before fitting it into the space. Once all your base cabinets are set, move onto securing any countertops and erasing any trace of construction dust.

Good Luck!

Completing a kitchen renovation all by yourself is an extremely rewarding accomplishment. After having made all the measurements, carefully picked out your materials and appliances, and seamlessly installed them together, you can finally stand back and marvel at your handiwork. Of course, it takes determination, patience, and time to see such projects through. 


In the end though, you will have saved a good deal of money compared to hiring someone else to do the job for you. Furthermore, it has been said that there is no better way to learn than by actually doing something; this certainly holds true when taking on any DIY project. Making mistakes along the way and learning from them can be every bit as valuable as success itself.

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