Saturday, January 20, 2018

How We Painted Our Kitchen Cabinets

We took what I consider a HUGE step and painted our kitchen cabinets white back in October. That was 3 months ago. I post photos of our kitchen weekly on Instagram. And I have a gotten asked so many times, "How did you paint your kitchen cabinets"?

I wanted to give a detailed account of exactly what we did because I feel like I wasn't getting to explain it thoroughly enough through Instagram messages.

Our Kitchen Before & After 

First off I want to say that I had absolutely NO intentions on doing a tutorial on how to paint kitchen cabinets when we painted our cabinets. And the reason for that is because I felt like there were so many tutorials on that subject already. However, after actually painting our kitchen cabinets, I have realized that everyone's experience is completely different. And it never hurts to study up on several different ways before you begin your own cabinet painting journey.

I went ahead and directly linked everything that I could. This post is NOT sponsored by Home Depot.We just happened to buy most of our supplies from there because we prefer our local Home Depot over our local Lowes. These are the exact items that we used. 

Here is our Supply List:

Ziploc Bags

Photos of Our Cabinets Before We Painted Them

What We Did
(Please forgive  me since the photos are not more detailed. As said above, I did not intend on posting a tutorial for this. However, I am detailing exactly what we did) 

The very first thing that we did was sand all of the cabinet doors, faces, & drawers (This was before we removed the doors but you could remove them first if you prefer)  We made sure that all of the shine was completely removed from the cabinets and that they were smooth to the touch. My fiance did the top while I sanded the bottom.We worked together and it went by pretty quickly.

After we sanded them, we wiped them down really good with damp rags. We did not use any type of cleaning product at all. I read several tutorials where the people did use cleaning products. However, after we sanded our cabinets down completely, we did not need to clean them. Everything came off during sanding.

Next we took all the cabinet doors and drawer faces off. We put all of removed hardware into Ziploc bags, keeping knobs, pulls, etc... together in separate bags. We also labeled each door and each drawer using painters tape (That way you aren't having to try to figure out what goes where later) We put the painters tape on the backside of the door. We started on the left side of the Kitchen going to the right, labeling "U" for upper cabinets and "L" for lower cabinets. So cabinet 1 would be labeled "U1" (Upper 1) or "L1" (Lower 1) We also labeled the drawer faces, also starting on the left side of the room, moving to the right side of the room.

How we had to live over a week 
(Excuse our mess)

We did all of the painting inside of our house (Our garage was far too dusty and you need a really clean space for this) We used our kitchen island and several tables in our empty dining room for the job. It took us 2 rounds to get everything painted.We got most of everything painted the first round.

We propped all cabinet doors & drawer faces using wood blocks. (You don't want them laying directly on the table/drop cloth because they may try to stick when you pick them up) We only painted the front of our cabinets. We did not paint the backs. We needed to get done quickly since we were painting in our living space with 2 small children. We can always go back and paint the backs at a later time.

The first thing that we did was use Kilz Premium Primer. We did 2 coats (I would recommend 3) We waited in between coats as per Kilz Premium Primer directions. (Patience is key when painting cabinets. Extremely hard to do but totally worth it) We used 4 inch rollers for most of the job and a paint brush in corners and small spaces (We would go over whatever we used a brush on with the roller so there weren't any paint brush strokes) Patrick painted the upper cabinets and I sat on the floor and did the bottom cabinets. Then I did all of cabinet doors & drawer faces.

Starting To Get There....

After doing 2 coats of the Kilz primer, we began painting using Behr paint with a roller (And brush as needed) I honestly went in thinking we'd only need to do 2 coats of paint. But we ended up needing 4 coats of paint. (What?????) I have no clue why it took so many coats! But I wanted to do it right. And 2 coats just wasn't enough. Neither was 3. The oak kept coming through. (That's why I would do 3 coats of primer as opposed to only doing 2 coats)

We also followed the Behr paint directions while waiting in between paint coats. (Again, patience....) We did not sand in between paint or primer coats. I know a lot of paint tutorials recommend that. We did not need to. (If for some reason our paint had not been smooth, we would have definitely sanded in between coats)

We waited a full 2 days before hanging our cabinets. This was the hardest part, waiting as my finished cabinets dried. But I wanted to make sure they were really, really dry. Patrick hung all the cabinets. He made sure his hands were clean beforehand. He was careful. And I sat back, biting my nails as each door and drawer face were attached. (We hung our doors at night while the kids were in bed) We also used beige, felt pads in between the cabinet doors/drawers and the cabinets to protect them from children slamming them. (We worried that the black rubber pads would stain the white cabinets)

We Left Them Open All Night Long And As Long As We Could The Next Day

We were finally finished with the first round! We started on October 3rd and hung them up on October 11th. Obviously had we painted the cabinet backs, it would have taken us longer.And had we had the space to get everything finished in one round, we would have done it that way. But we didn't.

Here Are the First Round of Cabinets Painted & Hung

We began painting the second round of cabinets on October 11th. They were hung on October 16th after one complete day of drying (I was real impatient at this point. Luckily, they were fine!) 

Here is the End Result. Our Finished Cabinets!

I love them so much.It is such a huge transformation.It was totally worth the work, time, patience, and having an ugly as ever kitchen for 2 weeks. If you are dreaming of white cabinets and are thinking of painting them yourselves, you can totally do it! It's scary and intimidating.I am not going to lie. But it is going on 3 months for us now and they are doing great so far. They wipe clean with a wet rag or baby wipe. We have two boys (3 years old & 6 years old) and they've held up in this short time. I will try to do an update at the year mark. But so far, I am in love.


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