Quick tips for painting kitchen cabinets | Maine Country Home

Outdated, ugly, dinged, scratched, dingy, mis-matched, bad color…these are some of the reasons you might want to redo your kitchen cabinets. Whatever the reason there’s an easy fix. Here are some quick tips for painting kitchen cabinets that will get you started:

#1: Remove all the doors and hardware

painting kitchen cabinets

This makes it so much easier to paint everything, and gives you a cleaner look (rather than leaving the doors on). Also, make sure you label everything. This is especially important if your cabinets are older. Nothing will be the same size, and you don’t want to spend your days trying to match up what door goes where! This is also true for hardware like hinges, you’ll have one odd-shaped one that only fits one door. Easy labeling – take a piece of painter’s tape and stick a square on the door and the inside of the cabinet with a number or letter on each square. That will make matching up much easier when you’re done!

#2: Give everything a really good scrub

Chances are there’s years of greasy build up on your cabinets. I mean, who actually sits down and cleans their cabinets these days?! Just wipe off the tomato sauce and go about your life, right? In this case you want to get everything off that could resist the paint, i.e. waxes or oils. So get a good degreaser, or some warm soapy water, and put the elbow grease to it! Make sure you wipe down your cabinets with a damp cloth if you’re using a cleaner to get the excess residue off, that could also resist the paint.

#3: Buy some foam rollers


Like these ones! They make painting cabinet doors a breeze, and will really cut down on painting time. The foam ones will say “cabinets and doors” on the packaging, so that’s easy! Plus, these little rollers come in handy for lots of projects, so it’s nice to have some hanging around.

#4: Use Annie Sloan Chalk Paint

chalk paint french linenannie sloan soft wax

No prep (like sanding or priming), sticks to just about any surface, no fumes, and easy cleanup (soap and water). Does it get any better than that? Quick tips for waxing – use a brush, you’ll get more even coverage, use less wax, and cut your waxing time in half. Also, if your kitchen is a little cooler add a small splash odorless mineral spirits to the wax to make it a bit softer. We’ve found this to be quite beneficial lately with the cooler temperatures, it keeps the wax from going on too thick and becoming gummy. Same waxing rules apply. Watch any of our Annie Sloan videos for a refresher, or if you’re new to Chalk Paint.

#5: Grab some friends!

tips on painting cabinets

Everything’s more fun if you get some friends and/or family to help you out, and it’ll go faster too! Crank up some good tunes and you’ll be done before you know it. Pajamas and beer/wine/cocktails optional.

Speaking of friends, in case you hadn’t noticed two of the pictures were of a kitchen in progress. We went down to help my long-time friend Crista and her husband paint their original 1950s kitchen. As you can see from the first photo on this post it was a bit dingy, dinged, and drab. It just needed a quick facelift. Here’s the breakdown of the project:

– 17 cabinet doors

– 4 drawers

– Upper cabinets – 2/3rds of a quart of Pure White Chalk Paint

– Lower cabinets and drawers – 50/50 mix of Graphite and French Linen Chalk Paint, 5/8ths of a quart of each color

– 2/3rds of a tin of Annie Sloan Clear Wax mixed with a splash of odorless mineral spirits in a separate container

– A little less than 2 days of labor, including break down and reinstalling doors and drawers

Oh, and did you notice the wall color changed too? We figured we’d go big or go home! It’s Silver Marlin by Behr if you’re interested. It’s a nice grey with greeny-blue undertones.

Are you ready for the reveal?

annie sloan chalk paint on kitchen cabinets how to paint kitchen cabinets tips on painting kitchen cabinets chalk paint kitchen cabinets

HUGE difference! Much cleaner and modern. We really love the idea of painting the lower cabinets a darker color, especially if you have higher ceilings, it helps to ground the kitchen. If you’re looking for another tutorial on painting cabinets, check out this post we did last year.

What color would you like to paint your kitchen?

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