by: Donna Peak | Log Home Design

If you're one of the thousands who suffer from KDS (Kitchen Dissatisfaction Syndrome), fear not—there's hope. And the remedy may be as simple and inexpensive as a coat of paint on your cabinetry. A healthy dose of color may be all that your kitchen needs to get on the road to recovery.

As with all prescriptions, follow the directions closely.

What You'll Need

  • Newspaper or drop cloths
  • Painter's tape
  • Degreaser & rags for cleaning
  • Paint brushes or spray equipment
  • Primer
  • Tinted paint
  • Polyurethane
  • New door hardware

Get Started
Step 1. Prep the area. Tape around the edges of the cabinet boxes to keep stray paint off the walls and lay drop cloths or newspaper to catch drips.
Step 2. Remove all cabinet hardware.
Step 3. Prepare the cabinets for their new coat of paint by cleaning all wooden parts (doors, frames, etc.) with a degreaser and lightly sand out any rough areas or peeling paint or varnish.
Step 4. Apply a primer, like Kilz, to the prepped cabinets.
Step 5. Start painting. More than one coat of color may be necessary to achieve your desired look. If so, lightly sand between coats. If you want a distressed look, sand a little heavier around edges and details so the undercoat can show through.
Step 6. Apply a coat of polyurethane to seal the paint, which will protect it from chipping or peeling and make it easier to clean. Again, more than one coat may be needed; lightly sand between coats.
Step 7. Keep cabinets in a dust free area during drying process to maintain a smooth final finish.
Step 8. Add new hardware to complete the makeover.

Good Advice

  • Paints, varnishes and polyurethanes come in different finishes; satin, eggshell, semi-gloss, flat, high gloss. Know what you want before you start.
  • Oil & water don't mix so remember: Oil can be painted over latex, but latex cannot be painted over oil. It will peel eventually.
  • Oil-based paints don't leave brush strokes like latex paints do, but white oil-based paint will yellow over time. Oil-based paint is also more difficult to clean; whereas latex-based paint cleans up easily with water. Additives like Floetrol, which condition the paint and improves the coverage (saving you money), can reduce brush strokes in latex paints and give you that smooth oil-based-paint look.
  • If you are spraying the final paint coat, be sure all cabinet doors are lying flat and out of the area of "spray dust," which will create colored bumps on anything nearby.
  • Hang cabinet doors vertically while drying to avoid dust from settling on them.

FAQ sheet about Floetrol.