Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Bloom's DIY Series Kitchen Redo: Cabinets

Hello dear readers! We hope you had a fantastic holiday and a wonderful new year celebration and are so pleased to begin 2016 by sharing our very first DIY Series with you all! As you know, Shannon is in the process of updating her 1950's kitchen and we have decided to share the entire project with you here on the blog. You can read more about the inspiration for our first ever DIY Series right here. In the meantime, read on to hear what Shannon has to say about the first step of her kitchen project!

Now that the holidays are over, this project is in full swing. And our first order of business is painting the cabinets. New cabinets can be outrageously expensive. A recent article in Better Homes and Gardens states that "most cabinets range from $500 to $1,500 per cabinet box. Based on an estimated 30 cabinets in an average-size kitchen, you can be looking at a cost of about $15,000-$45,000."

Whoa. I don't know about you, but that is just not in the cards for me. The next best option? Paint. Paint allows for a fresh, updated look without breaking the budget. I did some research and found that one of the best paints on the market for cabinets is a product we at Bloom. are very familiar with: Advance by Benjamin Moore. We have used this paint for so many projects, both for clients and personal pieces and we absolutely love it. Advance is an alkyd, water-borne paint that is incredibly easy to work with and finishes like butter. It's finish is smooth and silky and when applied correctly and with the right brush, there are no brush marks or lines.

For my cabinets, I decided on the popular, two-toned look, with white cabinets up top and darker cabinets beneath. I did this because I love the contrast it provides and also because I have kiddos and a darker color will provide better coverage for stains and normal wear and tear. I also decided to leave the cabinets on either side of my sink open, to show off my best dinnerware and unique vintage finds, and also to make the space feel bigger. I wanted to make a statement and chose a very dark color for the interiors. Today's post will focus on the cabinet interiors. Here's a quick look at how things looked the night before we started working:

Cabinet doors removed, everything taken out and counters below cleaned. 
I am in love with Sherwin Williams' Urbane Bronze. I am seeing this color everywhere lately and I cannot gush about it enough! A very warm, almost brownish, dark-gray with an ever-so-slight gold hue, it is such a cool color! I wanted drama for my open cabinets and this color packs some major drama. I have a lot of white kitchen ware that will pop nicely against the dark tone, as well as a few colorful pieces that will also look very interesting when displayed. I was able to have the color matched at Benjamin Moore with no problems.

To begin, you want to make sure all surface areas are thoroughly cleaned and sanded. Danielle and I wiped down every inch of the interiors and then pulled up the old contact paper on the shelves.

After a thorough sanding, we taped off the areas underneath the shelves where they meet the cabinet walls. We did this because while the cabinet interior walls will be painted in the Urbane Bronze, the shelves will be painted white to offer a nice contrast and to avoid your eyes getting lost in the darker color when looking at the cabinets. Since we'll be adding new contact paper to the tops of each shelf, we only taped off underneath so we would not have to paint over any brush marks down the road.

Once everything was taped, we started painted. We used angled, 2" Purdy brushes and each took on a cabinet box. Working quickly and allowing a little dry time between coats, we finished in about 4 hours.

The color. is. amazing. I love the way it changes ever-so-slightly in different lights. I see more of the bronze undertones in artificial light, and a deep, rich graphite color during the day. And once the shelves are painted with a fresh coat of white, I think they will really pop!

A few pointers:

  • Remember to really clean your cabinets. Especially areas where grease and dirt has built up over time. This will allow the paint to properly adhere to the surface and your finish will last longer.
  • Use a mid-grade sand paper to prep your surface. We used medium-grit sanding blocks for this project. 
  • Use contact paper for shelves. Contact paper provides a long-lasting surface and will hold up much better than paint. And be sure to remove old contact paper BEFORE painting.
  • Use high-quality paint brushes. We prefer Purdy but any good-quality brush will do. Always clean your brush immediately after using. If you're in the middle of painting and need to break for a little while, simply cover your brush with saran-wrap or a plastic bag and place in fridge. 
I am so excited to continue working on my kitchen renovation and to be able to share every step with you! Be sure to stay tuned here on the blog and on our Facebook, for more updates on our DIY Series. And don't forget to comment with any questions or tips from your own DIY renovation projects! 

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