Wednesday, May 9, 2012

of Painting Kitchen Cabinets

I'm about six weeks from our move to Iowa, and five weeks from a special pre-moving trip to Iowa.  The hopeful plan is for the Nicest Sister in the Whole World and I to go up to Iowa a week before we move in order to get a little work done before all the boxes and little people enter the house.  I'm hoping we can at least get the kitchen cabinets painted, so that when we move, the kitchen will be ready to receive all our kitchenware and we can start cooking - kitchens are kind-of important that way.  I'm so excited to make this trip!

Here's the kitchen as is.  I'm reeeally excited for the "After" picture.  I know a little paint is going to make a huge difference in here.  The question is what color to go with???  That's what I've got to get figured out pronto. 

{Our new house kitchen}

Should I just pain them all white?  I do love the clean fresh look of white kitchens....and farmhouse sinks : )



Or color??? Probably not.  But these are some pretty kitchens.

If I didn't go all-white I'd probably do white on the top cabinets and a color on the bottom, like so. I do really like this look, too.  Hmmmmm.

source unknown

I've never painted any kind of cabinet before, so it'll be a little learning curve, but if I can just make a paint color decision I feel like that's half the battle ; ) This is going to be hard for the gal who tries a minimum of four shades to get the right color....but I really won't have time to be changing things as our time will be so short.

I'm wondering if any of you have tackled painting your kitchen cabinets??   If you have a picture, it'd be lovely if you'd to link to it in the comments!  I would love some additional inspiration and any tips you have for cabinet painting would be muchly appreciated!

If you haven't painted your cabinets, now might just be the time to go for it : ) 


  1. I had dark wood Kitchen cabinets and painted them a few years ago. I LOVE them and wonder now why it took me so long to just do it! Here is where I posted about how I did it. I am not a pro, but they wipe down wonderfully and are still looking great! Good luck and I look forward to seeing all your new adventures in your new home.

  2. I painted our cabinets in our first house, sorry no picture, a creamy white color called Vermont Cream from Behr Home Depot. Then I rubbed a stain on top of it to antique it. I read somewhere to use a highgloss on the cabinets and then I wouldn't need a poly so that's what I did. We lived with them for 3 years and never had a problem. They kept up and cleaned easily. Next time though I wouldn't do the stain on top, but I did love the cream color we choose. Next house we purchase I hope to do the same cream on top cabinets and a light grey-taupish color on the bottom. I think 2 toned would look good in your new kitchen, but definitely a white somewhere in the mix, probably on top to help make the room brighter. Good luck and can't wait to see what you do to the place!


  3. We painted ours two years ago, when we moved in, and they have held up beautifully, so I encourage you to go for it! I'll do our next set (yes, we have to move again) a little differently, though: I've learned about self-leveling primer since then. I might try a specialized cabinet paint, too, such as the Rustoleum kit. But I'm sticking with white. The white has been great. I love the clean, bright look, and the room is SO much lighter.

    You might want to consider what will look nice with your countertops, depending on whether or not you think you'll be able to replace them in the near future. They look like the Harvest Gold counters I grew up with -- and while I've got nothing against a sunny yellow, it might limit your color options.

  4. Hi Cailan,

    I have a suggestion for a better, easier outcome... instead of sanding the stained cabinets, paint liberally with Liquitex Gesso and lightly sand that coat with an extra fine sand paper to get rid of brush marks. Then you can paint with semi-gloss or gloss water based enamel for a more durable finish. Buy the Liquitex brand Gesso at one of your local Colorado stores that sell art supplies as paint stores don't carry this product. Gesso complete seal the wood so it will not warp and is the BEST undercoat for a smooth final coat and the old stain will not bleed through. Liquitex is expensive, but sill save you headaches down the road and result in a more professional and durable finish.

    Can't wait to see what you and Meagan do with the kitchen. Consider getting a REAL farm sink, which would be a soapstone sink and/or countertops. Soapstone is 'inert' so bacteria does not grow, which is a problem with granite tops. Soapstone has a warmth all of it's own, but it is 'dark' varying from greenish gray to charcoal depending on how it is oiled (cured) - all are unique but it wears and repairs beautifully.

    Love your new house. It oozes CHARM and warmth - great place for quilts.


  5. i adore white cabinets. i used to love dark woods and dark earth tones. now i'm the opposite. the whiter and lighter, the better! one day i will paint my cabinets white!

  6. Wow! I seriously love all of those kitchens!

    I have painted wood cabinets and adore them. I love the idea of painted 'color' cabinets but I feel you could easier get 'tired' of them. You really can't get tired of white. It's classic!

    Cant wait see what you do.

  7. all your pics are so peaceful looking. Can't wait to see what you and Meagan do... only wish we could come help too!!!
    lots of love!!

  8. I'd go white! It'll brighten up the space and make it look larger. And if it's possible, I'd remove that lower counter on the breakfast bar and add beadboard to the wall under the counter. I might even do a beadboard backsplash. (I hear that the beadboard wallpaper works well, too--and it's pretty inexpensive!)

  9. We are getting ready to paint our kitchen cabinets too! I found what looks like a great tutorial from Young House Love. We're planning to follow their steps. Good luck!

  10. white!! i love it! it will transform the place!! your girls trip/work trip sounds like such fun!! i mean, fun work combined. i love the idea of colored cabinets, but i think if you get tired of the color you'd regret it. if they're white, you can change out accents easily and change the whole look.
    i painted our cabinets once. i would suggest a hand sander to make that go faster and set up the doors in the garage on sawhorses or something so you can paint them quickly. it's a lot of work, but so worth it!

  11. Without a doubt... WHITE!!!! white cabinets are just soooooo gorgous... no matter what your style!!!! Wouldn't a vintage farmhouse island look perfect where the present bar is???? oh well........... TO THE FUTURE!!! Cannot wait to see white cabinets (Maybe) .. I am so excited to see what you do!!!!

  12. I have recently started following your blog and love the use of color in your home. I had to comment because I just finished painting my kitchen cabinets and used the tutorial from Young House Love as a starting point. One tip is : It takes forever to do it the right way. Sand as much as you can, use a deglosser and prime!! It took me about 2 solid weeks of painting, sanding and priming- and I have solid wood cabinets. Take your time and you won't regret it. I went with white- it is classic and you can always accent with color. Good luck!

  13. The white is so pretty. My friend's sister in Grand Junction painted her kitchen walls a turquoise like color and it is SOOOOO bright and pretty.

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