My husband, Jarrod, and I built our house when we were 26 years old. We were WAYYYYY too young to know what we really needed and wanted out of a forever home. I was pregnant with Grace, it was about 155 degrees outside, and we were on a tight budget so we did as much of the work as possible (rough and finish plumbing and electrical, insulation, paint, tile, laminate floors, cabinets). It was absolutely brutal. I vividly remember nailing down cement board every 4 inches in that horrible heat, taking frequent vomit breaks. When it came time for cabinetry the most reasonable choice in our area was a Home Depot 90 minutes away. I sat with their design consultant, Les, on THREE separate occasions for a total of 15 hours designing the kitchen. I also did that with the lady who made Grace’s first birthday cake so that tells ya a little bit about me…. Anyhoozer, Les the cabinet guy and I got pretty tight. If only Pinterest would have been around back then…could’ve saved Les a lot of heartache.
I wanted dark wood which Les talked me out of. He convinced me that oak was timeless and would never go out of style. I wasn’t nearly as opinionated back then so I trusted a 56 year old man’s definition of timeless and we ordered. But, I didn’t like them then…or 5 years later…or 10 years later. The wood grain was way too busy for my tiny kitchen. I’d been contemplating painting them for a long time but it wasn’t until February of year 11 in this house that I got serious. I called a professional painter for a quote which turned out to be way beyond my budget (around $2000). So my mother in law, Deanna, came up for a visit and we got after it (that lady can WORK).
The first step was to take all of the doors and hardware off, by far the worst part of the whole process in my opinion. We used painter’s tape along the floor and walls and cleaned the cabinets well. Then we applied one light, even coat of KILZ primer. It’s no fun to clean up but that stuff is magic. No sanding necessary.
Next we applied two coats of Clark + Kensington paint plus primer, available at Ace Hardware. I love Clark + Kensignton for it’s smooth, thick consistency and durability. We chose semi-gloss because it’s easy to clean and didn’t require a topcoat.
Of course the final step was putting the doors and hardware back on. Luckily Deanna & Jarrod handled that while I restocked the shelves. We used the original hardware which saved a few hundred dollars. It’s been seven months now and I absolutely LOVE the transformation! My kitchen look bigger, brighter, and cleaner.
Cost breakdown: 1 gallon KILZ primer $16, 2 gallons Clark + Kensington $62, painter’s tape $8, paint brushes $20. Total cost = $106! Total time = 2 weeks… HA! Ok, that wasn’t strictly hard labor but we did have the kitchen torn apart for 2 weeks.
Best $106 I’ve ever spent! Now I’m feeling the need to spice up the kitchen decor!
The paint color we used was a custom mix. Here is a photo incase you’re interested in trying it out.