Have I mentioned how excited I am about this product?! I mentioned in an earlier post that I took a class at Home Depot on how to do this. I was initially planning on waiting to do this until we moved in, since there was so much other work to do at the house. But Leon knew how excited I was about doing it, so he insisted I start right away. I’m not done with the process yet but I’m far enough in to give you a good idea of what I’m doing.
The hardest part of this whole thing is the prep work. It took me a day and a half just to prepare the cabinets in the kitchen. (I plan on also doing the cabinets in the hallway, the laundry room and both bathrooms). I’m going to walk you through a step-by-step tutorial because I know once you see the transformation you will be running to your local home improvement store to buy this kit. (And you will need help – I learned some great tips in that class). I’ve already been contracted by my mom and Karen to come do their cabinets once I’m done with mine.
Here are a few pictures of my cabinets before I started:
I chose Espresso as my color because I love the look of dark cabinets. There are tons of choices ranging from white to blue to brown to black. Just pick what you like best.
(Espresso from the http://cabinets.rustoleumtransformations.com/colors.php website)
To start the prep work you have to remove the doors and drawer fronts from your cabinets I suggest using an electric screwdriver because my hands started cramping! Before you start tearing down your cabinet doors, you must get organized. Map out your kitchen and number each door and drawer location. You will need to remove the hinges and any existing hardware from each door/drawer. Do this one door at a time. Remove the door, remove the hardware from the door and place all hinges and screws in a zip lock baggy and label that baggy with that door’s number. Put that zip lock in the cabinet it goes with. (See the number 10 in sharpie on the bag? That bag is on a shelf in the spot that those hinges came from).
Then write that number on that door. I wrote it in the space where the hinges go so it would still be there once I’m done painting the door.
The reason you have to go through all this is because your cabinets have been there for years, and each door and drawer hangs differently. If you try to put door #1 in spot # 2 it may not close properly.
Now is the time to use wood putty to repair any major imperfections in your cabinets or fill in hardware holes if you plan on removing hardware or changing your current hardware out with something that is a different size.
Once you get all your doors and drawers down, you need to clean them. You can use your de-greaser of choice but I loved Krud Kutter. It got some serious grime off these cabinets.
I piled up all my doors/drawers, cleaned them and then cleaned the cabinet frames. This took FOREVER because they were seriously gross.
Oh – by the way – you know those fake drawer fronts in front of your sink? You CAN take those off… very easily. The just pop right off.
Here is what it looked like once I got all the doors and drawer fronts off:
The next step is optional. I decided I wanted to add hardware. Here is what I chose:
I bought this super handy template to help me measure out my holes for the hardware.
After I marked where I needed to drill the holes, I used a nail and hammer to make a dent so my drill wouldn’t drift. Then I placed a piece of Blue painters tape on the back of the cabinet, to prevent blowing out the wood on the back.
Then I grabbed the drill!
(Tim – the – Tool Man – Taylor grunts are now coming from me)
I love the smell of saw dust in the morning.
After you clean everything really well and drill any holes for the new hardware, it’s time to open your kit. It includes a deglosser and scotch brite pads. This will cut the shine and cause you to NOT have to sand your cabinets! (YAY- NO SANDING INVOLVED!) This part is time consuming. You have to put some elbow grease into it, really scrub them. Make sure you are scrubbing in the direction of the wood grain.
After you rub in the de-glosser you have to wipe it off with a damp cloth and then dry the cabinet with a clean dry cloth. After waiting an hour, you can start the fun part; painting on your base color.
You have to work really fast now because this isn’t normal paint. It is thinner than normal paint and dries much quicker.
Here is one of my drawer fronts with the first coat of the base color:
And a picture of a few painted drawer fronts next the a non painted one:
And after the two coats of base:
I also started on the doors. Each side of the door needs two coats so I started with the back side, let it dry, then painted the first coat on the front. I still have to do the second coat on the back and front of the doors.
I still haven’t painted the cabinet frames. Once I get the two coats on everything and let it dry for a few hours, I can start on the glaze which gives it texture. The glaze kind of sets into the wood grain and helps it stand out. You don’t have to do the glaze but I like the look. After the glaze is done, I have to apply the clear protective top coat. Then I can add my hardware and I’ll be done!
So, what do you think so far? I LOVE how it’s turning out. I can’t wait to finish these. After I’m done with the cabinets I’m going to deal with those hideous pink counter tops.
One. Thing. At. A. Time.
(that’s my new mantra because I’m a bit too eager for my own good.)