Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Kitchen Cabinet Chalk Paint Makeover: Part I

The list of renovations we're working on has slowly gotten out of control grown over the last few months. Like, to the point where we're pretty much removing, replacing, or repainting everything (besides the walls, which I already did a couple years ago).  

Amidst the chaos is a much-needed kitchen makeover, which will consist of "new" cabinets, new countertops, new backsplash, and new sink. Our existing cabinets are the run-of-the-mill, builder-grade variety. Nothing special here. They are very un-special, in fact. And the Colonial Maple stained oak has long worn out its welcome. All I can see when I look at our woodwork these days is orange. (Which also doesn't do our gray-with-a-hint-of-blue walls any favors, either.)

Our kitchen is pretty small. I had to cram myself into corners
and use odd angles to get some of these pictures.

The cost of replacing all the cabinetry wasn't really an option, given everything else we've got going on. Enter a LOT of Pinterest-ing research which led me to decide on painting our cabinets with chalk paint. I've already used chalk paint in several projects, including my coffee table makeover as well as many of the signs in my Etsy shop. I'm pretty much obsessed with it (but who isn't, by now?). 

Anyway, I also decided that such a substantial project justified an "investment" in top-of-the-line materials. In other words, I splurged and bought Annie Sloan chalk paint for the first time--which runs about $35 a quart. I splurged further and bought two of the Annie Sloan flat brushes, which the stockist recommended for cabinet painting. 

I'm using Pure White for the upper cabinets, and will most likely do Graphite for the lower cabinets (although that hasn't been purchased yet). These photos in particular have been a major source of kitchen inspiration for me:

The fact that there is no sanding or priming needed makes up for the cost of the chalk paint in my book. The only thing I did was to wipe down the cabinets with a water/vinegar solution, to help remove any grime, grease, etc. 

Don't get me wrong, this is a time-consuming process no matter how you look at it. Just less so than it could be. I've discovered that it does take four coats of paint to completely cover and block any underlying stain color. I could maybe get away with three, but I kept thinking about this blog post I'd read, and forged ahead with one more coat. Really, the paint dries so fast that it's easy to do several coats in a day's time.

First coat of paint...

Just as everyone says, Annie Sloan Chalk Paint is really nice to work with. It's thick, but I haven't bothered to thin it with water as some suggest.  I think that's just a matter of personal preference and how prominent you want the brush strokes to be.

I'm going to leave you with just one more "sneak peek" picture for now, and next time I'll show more of my progress including the best part... distressing! 

Four coats later and ready to get distressed!

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