If you know me, you know my love for the topic of DIY kitchen cabinet painting.
Why? Because it is one one of the most cost effective and rewarding DIY transformations for your home.
It is also a topic that raises many questions and, sometimes, fear…
The fear of “What if I mess it up?!!” is a real thing and the number one concern I hear.
I mean, can you imagine going through all that work then hating the result?! No thank you!
Take a deep breath, my friend… that is exactly why we are here today.
It’s important to understand what you are getting into with a project like DIY kitchen cabinet painting.
Done right and with the right consideration ahead of time, the results can be amazing.
I’ll walk you through 5 key things you should consider before diving in.
And, I’ll provide tips, tools and resources to do it right for a gorgeous finish.
Without further ado…
5 key things to consider before DIY kitchen cabinet painting:
Determine How Much Space You’ll Need
Make sure you have the appropriate amount of space to complete your project.
It will involve taking the cabinet doors off and you will need a place to store them as they are waiting to be painted, being painted, then again as the paint (and protective topcoat) dries.
Setup Up Your Work Area
Your work area will include table(s) for painting and a general area for supplies needed for the project. The size of your kitchen will determine how many tables you will need.
I recommend having at least two 6’ folding table like these or you could make sawhorse tables, using 2×4’s for the legs and a flat surface for the top (like an old door, scrap wood, etc..) if you find that to be easier/more cost effective.
It’s wise to make a mini temporary kitchen in your home as your kitchen will be offline for the project timeline.
Schedule Anticipated Time
The beauty of DIY kitchen cabinet painting is that it does not take much money…but it does take time.
One of the most common questions I’m asked is “How much time should I plan?”.
This is a tough question to answer as everyone works at different speeds.
However, a good way to gauge time would be to assume each cabinet will take 2-5 hours from start to finish (not including dry time), meaning you have:
- Removed the door and hardware
- Thoroughly cleaned the surface
- Applied 1-3 coats of paint on the door and the cabinet frame/base (average needed is 2 coats of paint)
- Applied the protective coating
- Reassembled the door to the cabinet
Smaller cabinets will take less time, while a larger cabinet will take more time (I know, I know – captain obvious here. lol)
Have Realistic Expectations
Remember that you are not paying a professional $10,000 to design and install new cabinets for you.
You are paying a few hundred dollars to do the work yourself. Don’t have unrealistic expectations of perfection, especially if this is your first time tackling a project like this.
You may make a mistake. I promise, it’s fixable. When you are a DIYer, you find ways to make things work – where there’s a will, there’s a way, right?
To set yourself up for success, I recommend reading “Top 6 Tips When Painting Your Kitchen Cabinets” (note: this will take you to our sister site, Vintage And Restore By K).
This will walk you the top tips to follow and is a great resource if this is your first rodeo.
Come to Grips With Potential Wear and Tear
You’re probably wondering, “What’s the wear and tear like? Is it durable? How long will this last?”
Answer: it depends!
The durability is only as good as how you treat the finish — initially and long term.
Painted kitchen cabinets that are given the proper time to dry and are treated gracefully in the first 30 day (during the ‘cure’ time) are more likely to last longer.
Additionally, installing handles/knobs and cabinet protector dots (like these) will help ensure a long lasting finish.
When protected right and treated right, the finish can last for years without any need for touch ups.
There you have it! 5 key things to consider before painting your kitchen cabinets.
Notice I didn’t say anything about skill set, in other words, addressing the question of “Can I paint my kitchen cabinets; do I have what it takes?”
Why did I not put this in the top 5 things to consider?
Because chalky finish Furniture Paint (also for painting kitchen cabinets) is so easy to use that anyone can do it.
If you’ve painted a wall before, you have what it takes to paint your cabinets. And, I typically find a kitchen cabinet painting project to be more satisfying and rewarding than painting a wall 🙂
So, what do you think? Are you ready to tackle the project?
If yes, check out our pre-assembled DIY kitchen cabinet painting kits on our website here.
Each kit provides all the main products to get your DIY kitchen cabinet painting project done right.
We’ve even taken the guesswork out of how much paint you will need with our Kitchen Cabinet Paint Calculator.
For a little inspiration, here are examples of customers who have transformed their kitchens using chalky finish Furniture Paint:
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