How to Make Over your Kitchen - Painting Cabinets
Updated: Jun 12
You guys!! I did something big - for me. Haha. I painted my kitchen cabinets and it transformed my kitchen - and my life! HA! Ok, I'm reaching but I'm so happy with it and can't wait to show you all! And I did it all by myself. I've never done such a big DIY. It feels so good! And honestly, if I can do it, you can too. I swear!!
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Everyone loves a good before and after right?! I know I do! Look at the difference! I just couldn't take the orange, outdated wood anymore. The rest of our house is light and bright, and now this kitchen feels like it fits in. The budget started at zero, which is why this was a big deal. haha. But in the end this cost only about $250! There was no getting new appliances, backsplash or countertops, so paint was what I could afford. =) I got lots of tips and advice from friends who had done it already, so I'll share all the tips and what I did to achieve this look. There are a few little things I still want to do, like paint the bottom trim and put a wooden X on the side of my island, but overall, it's finished!
*This is what I did - I'm not a professional. Take my steps as advice, not the perfect method for everyone. These are tips I've learned from many different people/Pinterest searches/ Youtube videos.
1. First thing to do was to figure out what color you want and what you will do with the door knobs/handles. This was the hardest part for me because I'm not great with interior design. I just knew we needed it lighter. So I looked at my backsplash and counters and floors and found a color that complimented. As for handles, I hated the knobs we had so I knew I wanted new ones. You could spray paint your old ones to save money. I spray painted the old hinges black to save some money there. Tip: Amazon is way cheaper for door pulls/knobs than Home Depot or Lowes. Here's my pulls: Door Pulls
2. Take all of the doors and drawers off the hinges. As well as take off the hinges and door knobs/pulls from the doors. BIG tip I found was that as you are taking doors/drawers off, label them with a small piece of paper/ post it note with a letter. You will place that post it note on the door and another post it note on the area where that door goes with the same letter. This allows you to put the same door or drawer front back on the exact same spot without getting lost.
3. Clean your cabinet doors and the kitchen frame very well, getting rid of dirt and grease. I used TSP cleaner to clean, then Deglosser to de-gloss. I have to say the de-glosser did not do much, but since I bought it, I used it and thought it would help with sanding time. Ehh, it wasn't that important of a step looking back. Some people I read will use the de-glosser and not sand, they just paint after that step. I feel for longevity, you just gotta sand. No getting around that. Also I got a tip from Carol at It's More Than A Home to use Purple Power to clean, it's an automotive cleaner. She had great success with that. Since we were in quarantine, I just went with something I could find at Home Depot for a one stop shop, and had no patience to order online and wait on shipping. Haha.
4. Now it's time to sand. I used a mouse sander and I had to sand by hand some to get in the grooves. I've learned you can use anywhere from 120 grit to 320 grit sand paper. The better you sand, the better the paint will stick. Once you are done, wipe down with tack cloth. You don't want any dust on your wood. I sanded the doors outside. For the inside, I taped up a plastic drop cloth to contain the dust. Definitely wear a mask during sanding.
5. This is when most people would prime. I did not. haha. I did buy a good paint that was paint and primer in one. So 2 coats of that was all that was needed for my project. Buy good quality brushes and foam rollers. I placed my doors on Dixie cups. You can also buy painters pyramids. Wait at least 2 hours between coats. I painted all of my doors and drawer fronts first, then did the kitchen frame. This way the doors had 2-3 days to cure. You really want them to cure before handling them and putting them back on your frame. A balloon garland while painting doesn't hurt either. =) My paint color was Loft Light from Behr Premium Plus in semi-gloss.
6. After painting was finished and had time to dry, I spray painted my hinges outside, as well as the screw tops. For the screws, I stuck them into a piece of cardboard so that I could spray paint the tops. Once everything was dry, we hung the doors/hinges.
7. For the door handles, I had to drill a new, extra hole. Some people would say to do this before painting, which you can. For me, it worked out fine without splintering or anything.
An easy DIY I did to my open cabinet and my kitchen table was to use peel and stick wall paper. Cheap, fairly easy to use and makes a nice statement if you need a pop of color or add a pattern to a space.
The table's finish was messed up. There were lots of stains and spots that just did not come off. So I easily applied this peel and stick wall paper to it and it's beautiful! I can take it off at any time as well. It peels right back off.
I hope you guys enjoyed that! It was a fun quarantine project, haha. Let me know if you have any questions!
Some of my kitchen accessories: