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Spruce Up Your Kitchen Cabinets with a New Stain or Paint Color

kitchen cabinets

You’ve probably heard the advice that renovating your kitchen is the number one thing you can do to increase the value of your home. At SNL Painting Inc., we often advise customers who’d like to take small steps to revitalize their kitchen without breaking the bank on a granite countertop or new tiled floor. We recommend a comparatively simple fix: refinishing their kitchen cabinets.

With something as simple as a new stain or trendy paint color, your kitchen cabinets can look brand new. In fact, the entire feel of your kitchen can change for the better.

Below, we describe a few trends and tell you how to get started!

Kitchen Cabinet Color Trends in 2019

Colored cabinetry is a trend you’ll see more and more of in the next couple of years. Painted cabinets in a dusky blue or jewel-tone green – even a deep black – are all options coming into style.

To get the look, choose a color that’s sleek and bold, or a color that’s muted and earthy, and paint it cleanly. The “antique” or “shabby chic” look isn’t as trendy this year as it’s been in the past. Instead, you’ll want to go for smooth, all-over color. Some people are even going for a two-toned color: one color for their lower cabinets and another color for their upper cabinets.

White and gray have been popular cabinet colors for years, and they can still give your kitchen a clean, airy look. If you choose white, carefully select colorful accessories to add some spark to your kitchen design.

Never be afraid to choose the colors that you love and use them. Remember, the kitchen is a gathering place. It can express your personality and set the tone for the entire house.

How to Paint Your Kitchen Cabinets Like a Pro

With the right primer and paint, and enough prep time to do the job right, you can spruce up your kitchen with cabinets that look brand new.

  • At SNL, we always encourage you to collect all the materials you’ll need before you begin.
  • Start by removing your cabinet doors and cleaning doors, drawers, and frames with a degreaser spray. Clean your cabinets thoroughly to make sure there’s no lingering oil or grime.
  • Next, use a sander fitted with 100-grit sandpaper to remove the finish. After you sand the doors and drawers, go over the molding contours with sandpaper by hand. You’ll know the job is complete when the sheen is gone.
  • Use a dry paintbrush, vacuum or cloth to remove all the dust from your cabinets. Once your surfaces are clean, sanded down, and dust-free, you can prime them.
  • Use a wide-angled brush to evenly apply the primer. Be sure to use a multi-surface primer! A primer designed for a wall may not hold paint on cabinets as well as a specialty brand will. Look for “bonding primer” on the label or ask a paint professional.
  • Finally, the paint. You may want to consider adding some extra oomph to your paint job with a hard coat additive. This will make your paint job more durable and help your cabinets resist dings and scratches. Typically, homeowners also choose a high-gloss paint rather than satin or eggshell. Look for a high level of sheen or a paint marked “enamel.”

Again, if you have questions about whether or not a particular paint is appropriate for your cabinets, contact a professional.

2019 Cabinet Stain Trends

Some people are hesitant to choose all-over solid color for their kitchen cabinets, preferring instead the warmer, more natural look of stain – a look that lets the wood grain shine through. Luckily, homeowners today have a dizzying array of cabinet stains and finishes to choose from! A gray driftwood finish is trendy this season, as are lighter-color wood stains that give the room a clean, restful appearance.

If you’re more interested in the dramatic, consider going dark with a black stain or a dark cherry. These stains add a richness and depth to your kitchen that neutral stains just can’t match.

Tips for Staining Your Kitchen Cabinets

You have a couple of options when it comes to staining your kitchen cabinets: traditional stain and gel stain.

Traditional staining: The process is similar to the process for painting your cabinets, with some key differences.

  • Remove the doors and hardware first, and then get ready to sand. You’ll want to sand all of the old finish off of your cabinets before staining. In the case of stain, use a 100 or 120-grit sandpaper and always sand in the direction of the wood grain. After that first pass, use a finer-grit sandpaper to go over your cabinets once more.
  • Apply a wood conditioner. This will help prepare your cabinets for a new stain.
  • Once the wood conditioner is absorbed, apply your stain. Use a rag to work your stain into the wood.
  • Next, put on two coats of polyurethane to make your cabinets look as good as new. Note: Use an oil-based polyurethane with an oil-based stain.
  • Some people choose a stain/polyurethane combination. That’s fine, but be sure to follow the manufacturer’s directions for dry time and staining a second or third coat.

Gel staining: Gel stain is “painted” on to the surface of the wood, but not rubbed-in. The stain itself is thick, not liquid. Although it sits on the surface of the wood like paint does, you can still see the natural wood grain beneath.

A few notes to remember: You don’t have to sand the cabinets as much with gel stain as you do with traditional stain. Gel stain is also a bit more forgiving than traditional stain. This makes it a popular choice with do-it-yourself folks.

If You’re Interested in Giving Your Home a New Look, Call the Pros at SNL Painting Inc.

We always recommend doing your research and consulting the pros before you begin a home improvement project. If you’d like to learn more about what we do, please don’t hesitate to contact an SNL representative. We’re happy to help with any of your interior paint projects.  

 

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