February 22, 2015

Prep, Sand, Prime and Paint!: Part 3

Now the tedious fun part begins! I'd like to note that I've never tackled a project like this before, so it's a whole new learning process for me + hours of Google searches. 

So this means there's a lot of room for error, fingers crossed that there are none, but that's what learning new things is all about! Plus, if there are hiccups along the way, you can learn from my mistakes :)

I've decided that I want to spray paint my cabinets...yes, spray paint, with a spray paint can. Why? Well one, I'd read such good things about spray paint projects from other DIY blogs and two...I'm lazy. You might ask how I can call myself lazy if I'm taking on painting kitchen cabinets...but let me assure you this is completely possible. The thought of using a roller and a paint brush to paint these cabinets makes me twitch a little because that seems like too much work, but pressing a nozzle on a can seems fun! Plus, I've picked up one of those fun little handle attachments that make the can look like a gun :)

So here's the steps I followed from start to finish painting these suckas.

  • Removed the cabinet doors
    • I decided to paint all of the doors first and then tackle the wall units...one because I only had one drop cloth and not enough space to lay everything out...and two...well it just made more sense
  • Cleaned all of the cabinets with TSP
  • Sanded the cabinet doors and base units with a fine grit sandpaper 
    • I used one of those flexible foam sanding blocks that you can buy 3 to a pack. I didn't sand down to bare wood, just enough to scuff up the gloss finish on the cabinets so the primer would have something to stick to
  • Wiped down the cabinet doors with a damp cloth, and then used a tack cloth to pick up the remainder of the sawdust
  • Once the cabinets were completely dry, I used Zinsser Cover Stain primer and sprayed one coat on, starting with the back of the cabinet doors
  • After the primer dried, I used the same fine sanding blocks and very lightly sanded everything to ensure a smooth finish for the actual paint
  • My weapon of choice...Krylon's white gloss
    • I'd like to add here that I did a test, one cabinet door I primed (but did not sand) and painted, then lightly sanded the paint, and another I primed, sanded then painted (but did not sand)...the door that I primed, sanded and painted came out silky smooth instead of sandy feeling...of course it would, because it takes more work! I was hoping to skip the step of sanding the primer and then just sanding the paint, but even after I sanded the paint, it still felt slightly...sandy! Wish I could tell ya skip sanding the primer, but you can definitely see/feel the results if you take the extra time and complete the proper steps *grr*
  • So I used one coat of primer and I can't even count how many coats of paint since I started with Krylon and ended with Rustoleum's white gloss. I found Rustoleum's claim of 2 x coverage is true! See my 'final thoughts' for why I made the switch.

  • After finishing my cabinet doors and making sure the white looked all sexy, I left them in the garage to completely dry/cure *make sure that it's not a windy day when you leave your garage door open to air out - why? Dust on your freshly painted cabinets = no good!*
Cabinet doors all done!
  • I moved onto to remainder of the wall units. I cleaned the wall units with TSP but didn't bother sanding, all the pieces were wood veneer and as slick as my husband's hair, so I made sure to apply some good coats of primer
Taping off and priming wall units

  • While all the units were drying/curing, I ended up dressing up the cabinet doors even more...the end results makes me giddy :) I lined the insides of each cabinet door with shelf liner from the Macbeth collection. I sat on my stairs just staring at the doors, they are like a work of art *sigh*
 Final thoughts
  • I should have sprayed on 2 coats of primer to further block out the original cabinet color. In fact when I look at the picture after one coat of primer, I was stupid enough to think that was enough! Don't be stupid like I was, apply 2 coats!
  • I would have used Rustoleum's white gloss spray paint to paint my cabinets instead of Krylon, the first few coats of paint I started off with Krylon because a) it was only $4 a can and b) it has a really cool EZ Touch 360 spray nozzle with a nice wide spray span. The spray is awesome and I love the gloss finish, but it takes a thousand freaking coats to completely cover everything! After doing a bit more research online (why I didn't do this before is beyond me...like I said, trial and error!) it looks like Krylon's formula is a bit more on the runny side and Rustoleum is thicker. It takes Rustoleum longer to dry/cure, but for good reason! Once cured it's a rock hard finish and pretty scratch resistant.

    I think it took 5 light to increasingly heavier coats of Krylon to get the coverage I wanted, and half the coats with Rustoleum. Though I will say the finish of Krylon is a nice smooth gloss, whereas the finish of the Rustoleum is more...textured gloss??
  • If you are spray painting anything that will take multiple presses of the nozzle, I highly recommend buying that trigger attachment, it was around $5 and is a thousand times more hand-friendly! When spraying the face frames I didn't use the trigger and after one cabinet, my finger muscles were achy.
So....now for pictures! I didn't bother cleaning the entire room for these pictures so don't judge me!

Just after the before picture...

What do you think? I still have a lot of work to do on this room but this is a definite improvement and a bunch more storage! See below for my attempt at organizing my clutter. Still struggling to find more of the blue bins at the dollar store so it's all a mish-mash inside right now.

Next steps are to fill in the corner wall gap with a custom unit I need to build...for what?? Stay tuned! And then need to figure out what units I need as the base to house bigger things that won't fit into little bins :)

Total cost so far:
$135 for cabinets
$33 for spray paint
$25 for bins
$5 for cabinet screws

Still far less than the estimated $400 at Home Depot...which I might also add, those promo cabinets STILL have not come back in stock yet! Also...there's that satisfaction of painting and hanging these myself that is worth SO much more ;) Can I get a 'what what'!

Happy DIYing!


Missed out on my other posts for this series? Check them out here.