Painting Cabinets - An Instant Upgrade!

About a month ago, Adeline started to stretch out her nap FINALLY (though it's still not consistent). That combined with the fact that I am currently not pregnant (and thus have energy and not worried about paint fumes), I decided I should tackle a project that has been on my "someday DIY list." And thus began the project of painting our bathroom AND kitchen cabinets!!

I began in the bathroom and worked my way to the kitchen. This was definitely a learning experience. I used chalk paint (NOT chalkBOARD paint - we don't need to write on our cabinets!!), which is commonly used to paint furniture. It's a newish fad. I chose to use it for a few reasons:

  1. Chalk paint is forgiving. You don't see brush strokes in the same way you do with pure latex paint.
  2. You don't have to sand the cabinets. Chalk paint adheres to the surface it's painted to. (Supposedly - time will tell, I guess.) This was clearly a huge reason! Sanding is a beating. Now keep in mind, waxing is required after painting on chalk paint, but that is actually not hard at all. Don't be fooled.
  3. Chalk paint is soft, making it super easy to distress. I originally thought about distressing and then decided against it. The softness of the paint, by the way, is the reason you must wax!
After researching, I discovered that chalk paint is pricey and only comes in limited colors. So I did a little more research and found a recommended recipe for making my own chalk paint. It only required latex paint, water, and calcium carbonate, found at my local natural food store. 

Other supplies I bought and recommend: (Affiliate links included) chalk paint brushes and a wax brush (The ones linked to are similar, but I found 2 chalk brushes and a wax brush on Ebay for $30 together!),  Johnson wax (cheaper at Home Depot or Lowe's by the way), wax buffing brush drill attachment , a powerful corded drill (We had this, but this is a must. The battery-operated is harder for this project. We tried.). Brendon also had to buy several drill attachments and tools to get the old hardware out - because the previous owners did a poor job installing them to begin with. All in all, we spent $200-250 on this project. That includes the oil rubbed bronze hardware we bought on Amazon - here and here! (Definitely buy hardware on Amazon! WOW! $1-2 per handle compared to $6+ at Home Depot.)

After a couple of weeks, of painting, waxing, and buffing during nap time and on weekends, I finally finished! And hubs was so great as to take down and put up cabinets and hardware! (Notice he and Lil are the only ones in photos though... hmm... don't be fooled!)


  1. Wow, nicely done! Looks great :)

  2. Nice! This is basically the color scheme in our kitchen for the cabinets and counter. The whole time we were painting, we would say,"wouldn't it be great if we could snap our fingers and it was all done?" It felt like such an accomplishment when it was all finished!


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