This refinishing project was a big one.
We look at how big a kitchen cabinet refinish job is by the number of doors and drawers involved. A good sized kitchen will have a total of 50 doors and drawers. The biggest kitchen refinishing project we’ve had up until now was a 75 piece job. Of course that included the entertainment center and fireplace mantle.
The job we just completed is our biggest kitchen cabinet project yet. Well, we refinished the cabinets in the
laundry room, powder room and master bathroom too. All told we had 75 door and 25 drawers: 100 pieces total.
The original finish on the kitchen cabinets look almost like a pickled finish, but not quite. There was a pinkish cast rather than the white you would expect with a pickled finish. Of course, the finish was 20 years old and had probably changed color as it faded. Here’s a picture of the original finish on the kitchen cabinets.
We did an over-glaze refinish over the main kitchen cabinets. Some people think we are re-staining the cabinets, and indeed, it does appear that we just stained them to a dark color. But we don’t have to strip the finish, nor do we use wood stain. Stain, even the oft-used gel stain, isn’t made to stick to an existing cabinet finish. It will dry and appear to be fine, but there’s a good chance it will flake off after time.
The layers of glaze we use for refinishing cabinets is designed with binders so it sticks to your existing kitchen cabinets’ finish. Usually we can get a dark walnut finish with two layers of glaze. But these cabinets were so light to begin with that we had to use three layers to get the rich undertones we need to make this finish look rich and deep. We also had to take an extra step of adding a clear “barrier coat” between the second and third layer. Of course we finished it off with our clear Diamond Varithane satin finish.
The kitchen island got a different treatment. We cleaned and prepped it as usual. Then we primed, painted and over-glazed and topped it off with clear coat like the rest of the cabinets.
We also refinished the cabinets in the powder room. We went from a plain white to a solid black with a wax finish. The change brought out the richness in the granite top and vessel sink.
And we also refinished the vanity cabinets of the master bathroom. They started out white and we painted them a gun-metal grey metallic and glazed over them with a black glaze. Of course we didn’t leave off the clear coat for a durable finish.