Friday, July 1, 2011

Cabinet Conundrum

For some unknown reason, I've decided that I want to finally paint our kitchen cabinets white. I tried to go to Home Depot last night to pick up the paint that Kristal recommended ('cause her cabinets look awesome!), but they apparently don't carry it in store and treated me like a total idiot (which is par for the course in my experience at Home Depot).

I wish they would have just had it in stock, because the extra few hours has just allowed me extra research time, which has just confused me even more and made me even more indecisive. Here's the deal:

-Kristal used a water-based cabinet enamel. She didn't sand or prime (though says that she would have primed in retrospect). I can't find the product that Kristal used locally, but Ace Hardware does carry their own version of a water-based cabinet enamel.

-My internet-buds over at Young House Love recommend oil based primer followed by latex paint.

-My dad, who is a contractor and has painted many-a-cabinet in his day, told me that oil based paint and primer are THE way to go for kitchens due to the high levels of water and grease.

-Centsational Girl said that oil based paint and primer are THE way to go for kitchens UNLESS you are painting white, as oil based whites can fade to yellow.

So basically, everything I read/person I talk to gives different advice. You would THINK that this would lead me to realize that I'll probably have good success no matter what I try. Instead, it has almost paralyzed me into a state of non-decision. I have no clue which way to go. My dad told me just to go ahead and do it--that even if I don't like how it looks, I can always just re-paint. But seriously....I don't know what to do.

Have you painted cabinets? Which method did/would you use?


  1. I painted mine white last fall; I used the oil primer with water-based paint and they are holding up really well. I used Behr's Swiss Coffee. Invest in some good brushes and rollers (if you aren't going to spray them) and just remember to do thin coats. Good luck!

  2. We painted out cabinets. We sanded and primed and then painted. I'm pretty positive we just used regular primer and paint, but it's been a few years since we did it so I can't remember for sure. I can say that it was a HUGE project. I'm really glad we did it (if you look at the before pics you'll understand why!), but yeah, HUGE project :)

    Here's a before and after post:

  3. Oil based white DOES yellow after some time. And also. Oil based paint can take up to a week to fully dry. So if you put the cabinets back on too soon, they'll stick. I've done latex and oil, and will never, ever again use oil. I hated it.

  4. I just painted our cabinets. Wait. I'll find the link...

    Ta-da. Appropriately titled, "cabinets."

    Anyway, I used the Rust-oleum kit. It was awesome.

  5. Your dad's advice is wise. Paint is temporary.

  6. I have always wanted white cabinets... I am so scared to paint them.

  7. Meredith, whatever you choose will be fine! :-) We used some random primer, Behr Kitchen & Bath paint from Home Depot in Ultra Pure White, and Ultra Smooth High Density Foam rollers. Your roller choice is probably more important than your paint choice. Our cabinets have been painted for 2 years and we haven't had problems. And really, it's just paint so it's easy to touch up if a piece accidentally gets scratched. Painting cabinets is a tiny financial investment for a big impact!

  8. I haven't painted cabinets but I'm currently following YHL's advice for how to paint furniture and it's going good... so far. ;)

    Also, sorry about your bad experience at Home Depot. I love that store WAY more than Lowe's, but that's just my preference!

  9. LOL, I have a post ready to go about this for next week :). We're doing the same project this summer and I just assumed I'd go with Kristal's recommendation. But I'm guessing I won't be able to find it, now. We'll use a bonding primer instead of sanding (recommended by our neighbor) and hopefully some kind of paint that hardens like Kristal's rec.

  10. I painted our cabinets white. The top cabinets had to be sanded & were painted with a spray gun. The bottom cabinets were brand new though, so I brush painted them. I used water based on both. The only problem I've had is that the bottom cabinets have yellowed in places, but I blame this on the fact that I didn't prime them before painting.

    Good luck!


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