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Family conflict on what to do with kitchen cabinets

We live in a 1905 rowhouse with a galley kitchen. The previous owners' redo of the kitchen is not to our liking, but we can't currently afford a complete makeover. We are trying to make do with the existing cabinets and put in new floors (hardwood to match rest of house and replace cracking tile) and countertops (probably granite). My lovely wife is concerned that this will highlight how shabby our dark wood existing cabinets look and she would like to paint them a creamy white and attach new hardware. I am very worried that dark wood stained cabinets cannot be repainted creamy white and look nice and finished. I worry they'll just look like we tried to get by on the cheap. I'd prefer to do something to spruce up the look of the wood on the cabinets without repainting since there is no going back once we commit to that.

Our inability about how to proceed with the cabinets is preventing us from moving forward at all with the renovation. Please help!

Thanks much.

Repainting Stained Cabinets

We had old ash cabinets with a walnut stain that we painted white. I used two coats of regular white paint over a good primer. I first added some decorative trim pieces to update the look and cover routed decoration. I then put a polyurethane over top to protect it. I have since seen a kitchen painted on a home show and they used marine paint. My paint job looked good. Another solution is to reface the cabinets. We had ours done recently. Guy used a veneer to cover all exposed cabinets and added new doors. Looks great.
I might suggest looking at quartz countertops. No need to seal, no problem with cracking. Ours looks great.

Re: Family conflict on what to do with kitchen cabinets

just sand the cabinets a bit to get the sealer off so the paint will adhere. That will buy some time until you can afford to make a big purchase and get the cabinets you want. If you don't like the color, paint it again, until you do like it. Take it a step further, paint the color you like, light cream or whatever and then go back with some sandpaper and rough up the edges. That will bring the darker color under the paint out and give them that "antique" look. Don't overdo the sanding part, just highlight around some corners and edges, then put on a marine spar finish to seal it.
just an idea
good luck

Re: Family conflict on what to do with kitchen cabinets

I too had dark kitchen cabinets. I'm not an advocate of painting wood, but in this case, I just had to. I used tsp to clean off years of grime. I sanded, primed and used two coats of oil paint. I love it. I also replaced all the hardware.
Good luck with your project.

Re: Family conflict on what to do with kitchen cabinets

You must not have read the manual when you got married.....

In matters regarding decorating, your wife is right and you are wrong.

In other matters of life you get to make the big decisions and she gets to make the small decisions.

She will determine what is a big decision and what is a small decision. She will let you know when a big decision needs to be made.

We have been very lucky, in all our years of marriage we have not run into a big decision yet. ;)

Re: Family conflict on what to do with kitchen cabinets

Another thing to consider is what type of paint you'll be using. If you spray, you can probably get by with a latex enamel. If you are brushing, get an oil based paint. It will smooth out better and look nicer. More trouble cleaning up but a better job...unless you spray. I like spraying with an HVLP gun because it doesn't make the mess that the big ones do. You can take the doors and drawers out to the garage and do a nice job on them with limited cleanup.

Good Luck.

Re: Family conflict on what to do with kitchen cabinets

I can relate to your situation. I ran into the same issue with my wife, except our stance's were swapped. As per usual, so got her way :D. Luckily it turned out great and we're still together in the same house!

The Antiquing idea sounds like fun!

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