Fresh Coats for Your Cabinets

By Joanne Loos Posted in: ImproveThe Fix is In

Spring is the season of new beginnings. Refresh your wood cabinets with these helpful hints

I love Easter. Ever since I was little, my family and I have always celebrated with a big brunch. To me, it feels more like the beginning of spring than the actual first day of the season. The weather is more sunny and warm, and people in general seem to be more happy and nice.

It brings to mind feelings of new beginnings. Not only do I get the urge to revamp my wardrobe, but I also start craving refreshers around the home. I’m finding that turning to my friends for some vicarious DIY befores and afters works just as well as taking on projects of my own. In the past month, I’ve “lived through” them for paint jobs, built-in shelving installations and dresser makeovers.

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To say my friends are handy and crafty would be an understatement. One friend even wowed us all by repainting her wooden bathroom cabinets. Repainting wooden cabinets is a great way to breathe new life into a space for a fraction of the cost of replacement. (And it’s easier than you think.)

Get ready. Set up shop in a well-ventilated area and cover the counters and backsplash. Remove cabinet doors and drawers, and place hardware, screws and other parts in labeled plastic bags.

• Clean every surface you plan to paint. Thoroughly cleaning your cabinets will ensure that the color sticks well. Use a tri-sodium phosphate substitute or a strong degreaser. Once the surface is dry, rough it up with 100-grit sandpaper. Pay attention to areas where the paint may be falling off. It’s not necessary to remove all the old paint, but you want to deglaze previous finishes. Vacuum and wipe up any residue.

• Apply a primer-sealer. Paint the inside of the doors, and while they are drying move on to the cabinet boxes. Make sure the doors are completely dry before you turn them over and paint the other side.

• Paint away. Again, start with the interior areas and work your way out. Allow the paint to dry for a couple of hours in between coats. You can also lightly sand the surfaces between coats. Remember to wipe away any residue after sanding.

• Wait. Allow the paint to dry completely before reattaching the doors and drawers. One to two days will keep you on the safe side.

Have a comment or question for Joanne? Email thefixisinhawaii@gmail.com.