Painting Kitchen Cabinets: Steps and Ideas

Painting your kitchen cabinets can be an overwhelming project, that’s why planning and prep is so important. You need to think about the right paint to use. Wall paint is not appropriate for cabinetry because it tends to chip.  Choosing an alkyd enamel will give you a smoother finish and stand the test of time and repeated cleanings.

Choose a color of paint that will complement your decor as well as your countertops. For example if you have a marbleized countertop with slight flecks of color, you can choose a color of cabinet that will draw out the color in your countertop. 

You will need to remove all hardware and keep the hardware organized and labeled as to which cabinet it goes to and where. Also remove all items within each cabinet and keep your items organized as well so that when the project is finished, everything can be easily put away. Remove all rugs on the floor and items on kitchen countertops. 

You also will need to rent an electric sander to sand off any previous finish or paint that is currently on your cabinets. An orbital detail sander will speed up the process and evenly prep the surfaces. Use tack cloth to remove dust and debris from all surfaces after sanding. 

Use an oil based primer so the wood cabinets don’t bleed through the color you paint them.  Wood is known to give light colored paints a tinge of yellow from bleed through. Also choosing the right rollers for cabinets is essential. Look for rollers that say smooth cabinet finish or mirror finish.  

You want to start with the cabinet bases and the back side of cabinet doors first. This gives extra dry time for the spots that will make the most contact.  Also prevents potential smudges and scratches. 

Once you have finished priming and painting all of your cabinets, work on cleaning all of the hardware before reinstalling back onto your cabinets. Attach the hardware onto each door before you attach the door back onto your cabinetry.

This sharp high-gloss black finish gives this kitchen a clean modern look. The black complements the earth tones in the hardwood floor and marbleized countertop.

Achieve a shabby chic kitchen with bright whites and pastel colors. As seen here the kitchen island cabinets are a pastel color and the upper and lower wall cabinets are white. Adding elegant chandeliers, white accessories and floral accents makes this kitchen perfectly shabby chic. 

Try mixing and matching your top and bottom cabinets. You can leave the top cabinets one color while painting the bottom another. Using white for the top cabinets will add light and vibrance to your kitchen. While painting your bottom cabinets an accent color that complements the rest of the kitchen will provide just the right amount of color. Especially if the accent color is darker and you don’t want an overwhelmingly dark kitchen. 

Painting your cabinets a bold cobalt blue will bring personality to your kitchen making the white tile backsplash and countertops pop. This gives the kitchen a fresh, lively feel. 

This beautiful farmhouse style kitchen is also mix-and-match with cabinet paint. Top cabinets remain white while the lower cabinets are a pastel blue. The color combination compliments the wood tones on the kitchen island countertop as well as the wood accents throughout the rest of the kitchen. 

Painting your kitchen cabinets can provide a beautiful update for your kitchen without the investment of a full kitchen remodel. Adding color as well as design, painting your cabinets can bring your kitchen back to life.

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