Painted Wood Cabinets – From Old Oak to Gorgeous Gray!
THIS IS A BLOG POST OF OUR OLD HOME – 2 HOUSES and 7 years AGO! It’s such a great example of budget-friendly update ideas, that I decided to update it and wanted to share it as MOST of you probably haven’t seen it!
As you all know, our home is ever-evolving and we have lost some serious square footage with the coats of paint on the walls. I figured it was time to move onto other surfaces – like the cabinets!
The kitchen is the heart of the home, but ours was more like the hemorrhoid (you don’t even want to know the one-liners I had attached to this…) So, given that there was simply zero budget to replace/reface the cabinets we decided that $3500 was a reasonable budget to stay within to update the rest of it to modern standards.
Before, we had decent bones with the solid oak cabinets/shaker style doors. The only negative was that the hinges were slightly exposed, but it’s no biggie as you wouldn’t see much of them once they were painted a darker colour.
I chose Benjamin Moore Chelsea Gray for the cabinets. In these photos, it looks just slightly gray-blue – it’s not. If anything it can sometimes pick up a very weee wink o’ green.
Once the painting was done, I let it cure for 2 weeks (as paint CAN take up to 3 weeks to cure), took the handles off and hit those edges with my palm sander and 220 grit sandpaper for a distressed look. This was the easiest part of the whole project and gave the cabinets a bit more dimension and personality (because we really need more personality in this house, right?).
In this next before photo, you can see the wall that USED to separate the kitchen from the dining room…
Taking that wall out was a GAME-changer for this home. It gave it more function so that we had not only a sit-at peninsula but also a dining area and a lounging/family room area (as you’ll see next).
This next photo was taken IN the kitchen, looking towards the dining room…
The wall WAS just to the right of the sliding door.
Now it’s totally done and the ‘Royal We’ is really happy with the results – or at least until I’m PMS’ing and bored again.
BTW – All of the ‘after’ photos on this page were taken by the talented photography group – Artez Photography.
Do you wonder how we only spent $3500? Let’s take a look at the details…
Countertops – $1200
We went with a high-end Formica (laminate/arborite) called Mineral Jet; a high-end countertop at a low-end price (they’re popular enough that the supplier can bring them in in bulk). Mineral Jet has a great premium finish which makes it low maintenance re: scratches and wear and tear. It also has a great colour palette of black, gray and brown, making it super versatile for my ever-changing tastes.
I also went for the low-boy built-in backsplash (1 1/4″) which is great because it gives me the protection behind my sink that I wouldn’t get without a backsplash and is more modern than the standard 4 1/4″ style.
Appliances – $1200
We bought a great 4 pc Frigidaire set that was used. The fridge has water and ice in it, the stove is a flat top, the over-the-range microwave is great and the dishwasher leaks – yes, it leaks more than I do on a trampoline, however, we’re in the process of fixing it (the fridge that is…).
Tile backsplash – $150
I tiled this myself which I HIGHLY recommend doing
while you drink wine. There are a few reasons why I chose to do the tile only 6″ high rather than full-height.
- It cut my costs in 2/3 which saved me some serious moula as this tile was $24 sq ft.
- By keeping the tile underneath the electrical outlets I saved myself from having to rent a wet saw (outlets are a bugger to cut around if you’re an amateur tiler like myself).
- Because I picked such a busy and visually strong tile, it would have been too overwhelming for the room to have it full height – instead, it’s a just a nice decorative detail rather than a decorative punch in the face.
Cabinet hardware – $120
We had to drill holes for these as there weren’t any there before (and I recommend getting a proper template to do this – Ikea). It boggles my mind that in the 25 years this house has been alive, not one person has thought “hmmm, it might be easier to open our cupboards if they had FRICKIN HANDLES ON THEM!!!!”
When choosing your hardware remember that the style and finish of your cabinet hardware should be cohesive with the lighting in your kitchen.
Lighting – $50
Great little drum shade from Rona!
Faucet – $140
I will never buy another sink faucet without a sprayer – it’s too much fun!
Read more: 4 Kitchen Update Ideas – including affordable faucets!
Window covering – $70
Good old in-stock Home Depot blind
Wall and Cabinet Paint – $190
I chose Benjamin Moore Gentle Cream for the walls. It’s a heavy cream that gave me a soft warm backdrop to work with.
New flooring was NOT in the budget (one must have Bailey’s after all). But while we’re on the topic, whoever thought that putting white grout on a kitchen floor was a good idea is cuckoo for cocoa puffs. If you have fugly grout, you can clean it up using Grout Renew, just so you know.
Oh, and we might’ve taken out a wall…did I forget to mention that? THAT was part of the dining area remodel, but it still affected the overall flow. In this before shot, you can see the wall that used to divide the kitchen and the dining area…
And the grand total – $3285
Our kitchen is part of our Open Layout Dining Room as well, here’s a sneak peek of that area and how the 2 relate to each other.
Not sure what colour to paint YOUR wood cabinets?
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