13 Jul 2012

How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets

How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets  #kitchenmakeover #budget #paint

If you've followed this blog for a while now, you are well aware that over the month of June we tackled our kitchen, of which one of the biggest projects was painting our cabinets.  Over the month I did three separate posts about the painting process, but I thought I'd do a roundup of our whole process in one post so that it's easier to reference.  If you're hungry for mega detail, please see the original posts here, here and here.

Here's our kitchen before.

How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets  #kitchenmakeover #budget #paint

This is a summary of the method we used, and although time consuming it was pretty painless. We've had the doors back on for almost a month now and still haven't had one chip, which is much better than I was expecting.

1. Number all of the cabinet boxes and the corresponding doors.  This will make it easy to reattach when you're done and not have to guess which door goes with which base.

How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets  #kitchenmakeover #budget #paint

2. Remove all the hardware and cabinet doors.  We have the quick release hinges but didn't use them.  Instead we unscrewed the hinges from the doors and left them attached to the bases. By doing this we saved having to redo all of the finicky adjustments when we reattached the doors.

How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets  #kitchenmakeover #budget #paint

3. If you are reusing the hardware (or spray painting it like we did) make sure to store everything in one place.  You'd hate to be short a handle at the end of the process.

How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets  #kitchenmakeover #budget #paint

4. Wash, wash, wash.  I used soap and water on every surface that was going to be painted.  I also used a degreaser (BBQ cleaner is what I had handy) on the areas that were sticky and greasy. 

5. Tape.  Tape off any areas that touch the wall or appliances.  If you are really good with a brush you could skip this step, but we figured it was safest for us to tape.

6. Degloss.  We picked up a can of liquid sandpaper at our local Benjamin Moore store.  This stuff is super smelly, so make sure your windows are open and the kiddos aren't in the room.  Also, before you start this step you need to be organized with your primer.  Although it didn't say it on the bottle, our paint guy told us that the deglosser  shouldn't sit for more than an hour on the cabinets without primer being applied.  We used an old rag to rub the liquid sandpaper on.  Honestly, it was hard to see the difference unless you looked in the right light and squinted.  At the right angle though, you could see that it was scuffing up the surface.

How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets  #kitchenmakeover #budget #paint

7. Prime.  I love Zinsser 1-2-3 Bullseye, so it was my go to primer for the cabinets.  The only trick with this primer is that it dries super fast, so make sure to clean up any drips as you go.  We used a brush to cut in and then a small foam roller for the larger areas.  We did 2 coats of primer on the doors and the cabinet bases.  We could have probably gotten away with 1, but the primer is way cheaper than the paint, so I'd rather do 2 coats of primer to save another coat of paint.  

How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets  #kitchenmakeover #budget #paint

With 1 coat of primer:

How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets  #kitchenmakeover #budget #paint

How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets  #kitchenmakeover #budget #paint

8. Paint. Use a good quality paint.  If your family is like ours, your cabinets are going to get some serious wear and tear, so don't cheap out on the paint.  We researched a bunch of options, but landed on  a paint I love - Benjamin Moore Advance in a Pearl finish.  Advance acts like an oil paint but is water based, so it cleans up really easy.  It takes a long time to dry, but once it does, it's hard as nails.  We picked Benjamin Moore White Dove for our cabinets.  Same technique as the primer - cut in with a brush and then roll.

Benjamin Moore Advance - How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets

9. Wait.  Advance has a 24 hour recoat time. The waiting is the hardest part for me.

10. Sand.  After the 2 coats of primer and one coat of paint we used 220 grit sandpaper to sand out any drips or uneven parts.  Make sure to wipe off all of the sanding dust before painting again.

11. Paint again.  Apply the second coat of paint.  I am guessing you won't need another coat after this, but if you do, wait another 24 hours and then reapply.

12. Wait.  This is where the real waiting begins.  You have to wait 3-5 days for the Advance paint to completely cure.  We waited 5 days because I wanted to make extra sure that the paint was rock hard before coming back into our kitchen.  

We did steps 5-11 twice - once on the back of the doors and once on the front.  We did the backs first so that we reduced the risks of scratching the fronts while painting the backs.

13. Reattach the hardware and the doors.  Thanks to the numbering this part should be a cinch.

How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets  #kitchenmakeover #budget #paint

The process is long and fiddly, but it's really not hard at all.  It took us about 3 weeks from start to finish to get everything done.  We chose to break up the top and bottom cabinets so that we didn't live without doors in the whole kitchen at once, which extended our time frame considerably.

Here's the before and after.

How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets  #kitchenmakeover #budget #paint

How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets  #kitchenmakeover #budget #paint

We also installed a new tile backsplash - you can read about the whole process here.  If you have any questions about the whole process please don't hesitate to leave a comment or shoot me off an email.

Looking for an update on how the cabinets are holding up?  You're in luck....there's a full update here.


19 comments:

  1. Your cabinets look great and you gave some great tips, like painting the backs of the cabinet doors first! I'm getting ready to go the opposite way, from white cabinets to Urban
    Bronze by Sherwin Williams.

    ReplyDelete
  2. *Urbane Bronze, not Urban.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. thanks Pam. Good luck with the painting!

      Delete
  3. thanks, I will repaint mine as your steps.

    Is there any tip about brushing?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The only real tip I have about brushing is to try and be as even with the brush as you can, not starting and stopping in the same place all the time. I tried to go back over as many of my brush strokes as I could with the foam roller to even things out. We also just wrapped our brush in plastic wrap between coats to save having to wash it every time. Good luck!

      Delete
  4. Great tutorial, Iam so ready to paint the cabinets and your post really motivated me. Love the product tips, that was my biggest hurdle. Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. Glad you found it motivating! Good luck with the painting. It's amazing what a fresh coat of paint can do for a space.

      Delete
  5. The finished product looks amazing! That had to have been quite the project!

    Kimberly
    CSI Project Guest Judge

    ReplyDelete
  6. Kelly - Just found your post from Remondelaholic. Your cabs look great. I'm in the midst of painting mine with advance too, but am ending up with more texture than I'd like. How do you think your end result compares to say sprayed cabinets? Maybe it's just me? I also found Advance hard to use. It's so drippy and runny.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Thanks for the great tips- you did am amazing job!

    I want to paint my cabinets, too... can't decide on the color though. I have the old, original beige laminate ones... want to go darker... anyone have any suggestions??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Are you thinking grey or brown? Or something a bit more adventurous, like a sage colour maybe? I am really liking Metropolis from BM right now if you like dark grey. Check out these pins for some inspiration.
      http://pinterest.com/pin/159244536795222885/
      http://pinterest.com/pin/159244536794585837/

      Delete
  8. We're going to get to this eventually, so your post has been really helpful.

    ReplyDelete
  9. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I have always wanted to paint my kitchen cabinets but my wife doesn't allow me to do that, she says it requires some basic skills and i won't be able to do this job properly.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Don't worry....I think anyone can do it. Just sand, prime and paint...done.

      Delete
  11. Kelly, I love it! I don't know how I missed this post. I'm going to blame just getting home with the baby around the time you did this post. We are going to paint our cabinets soon and I was poking around pinterest and found your post. So glad I did. We have 23 cabinets so it's going to be a chore! I think I might try the liquid sandpaper! Your kitchen looks beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Carla Ashton1/03/2014 1:44 am

    what would be the problem with painting the doors while on the cabinets
    instead of taking them off? Thanks,

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Our main problem was that the paint needed days to cure, and it wasn't feasible to leave the doors open for days. While the paint is curing, you wouldn't want the doors to touch the base or you risk the paint peeling. Also, you'd be less at risk for drips by taking the doors off and laying then down....and it allows you to get the side edge.

      Delete

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