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Why would I paint such lovely cabinets??

A few of you have wondered about that, so I thought I’d answer that question in a post.

First off, I’m not really a huge fan of the color of the cabinets…the pinkish-tan thing doesn’t exactly blow my hair back. But the real problem is this:


And this:


The cabinets are old enough that the finish on the frequently-used ones is totally worn out. We’re down to bare wood in spots, and in that sort of situation, you really have to refinish the cabinets somehow to make them look decent.

And as you can sort of see in the above photo, the bottoms of the cabinets are pretty chipped and dinged up.


Fortunately, the cabinets are made of wood, not plastic laminate, and so I can sand them, prime them, and paint them, and they should look significantly more fabulous.

So, there you go. Please don’t waste any tears over these cabinets even if you adore wood…they’re really not all that lovely, and I am totally confident that this project will be a net improvement.

Thus endeth my defense of this painting project.


Joshua’s 365 post: Happy (late) 4th!

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Tuesday 27th of August 2013

Kristen, Thank you for your simple step by step directions for painting furniture. I have a desk that was my Mom's that I inherited and a seperate chair that I really don't have a use for so I thought why not repaint the desk and chair to match. Not really sure how to go about it until I found your site and got your how to instructions and now am excited about starting the project.

Wish me luck!


Wednesday 7th of August 2013

Your finished cabinets look great. Have you ever refinished cabinets that are finished in formica? Mine look sort of like your before photos but of a yellowish-colored formica. I want to paint them but don't know if the paint will "stick" and not peel off.


Friday 12th of July 2013

I would paint my circa 1970s cabinets in a heartbeat if expense weren't an issue. The cabinet doors have a lot of grooves, so I think I would have to hire a professional to get the results I want. They are seriously sturdy real wood so I'd be foolish to replace them, but they are definitely dated. As it is, we are saving to build a house someday so I'll live with it until I can design my dream kitchen.


Friday 12th of July 2013

Have you checked into cabinet refacing? Most stores such as Lowes/Menards/Home Depot offer this. Basically it involves replacing your doors and either painting the cabinet box or covering it with an adhesive-backed covering.

Economies of Kale

Friday 12th of July 2013

I have a bookcase that's the same colour - but it is plastic laminate so I'm stuck with it! I think it's a very common colour in mass-produced office furniture - I'm not a fan of it either.

Dave Drew

Thursday 11th of July 2013


With more than 20 years painting under my belt, I can offer one great tip for painting those cabinet doors that will make them look professional ... if you have a garage you can empty and wet down the floor ... spray the doors one at a time outside and quickly carry the door into the garage. Set each door on a can or something and let dry in the garage.

The wet garage floor pulls all of the dust out of the air that would normally fall on your wet painted doors.

Paint the back side first ... let dry ... then paint the front. A little extra leg work, but SO well worth the smooth, dust-free finish!

Have any painting questions, I can make your next painting project much easier and save you money as well.

Warmly, Dave Drew


Saturday 13th of July 2013

Dave, please post any tips you can -- I'm about to do my entire kitchen, too! And since I have a garage, I'm going to try this! :D My thing is... the inside of my cabinets look horrible, too. And the undersides. But part of the underside is a rough edge and I'm not sure WHAT to do with that...

Jen @ Healthful Saver

Thursday 11th of July 2013

Love the painting tips!

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