How To Paint Kitchen Cupboards

Image credit: The beautiful kitchen featured above is the main kitchen in the Farmhouse at the recently renovated Papple Steading. The chosen colour for the cabinetry is Steel Pole.

A full kitchen redesign can be an expensive project but if you’re happy with the layout of the space and your cabinets are in a good condition, a fresh coat of paint could be exactly what you need.  This project does take a little bit of time and some careful preparation but there is potential for something really incredible which will also save on cost and waste!

Invest Time in Preparation

As with all paint projects, good preparation will make the whole process a lot simpler and give you the exceptional results that you are looking to achieve. 

Start by removing all your hardware – taking care to keep your handles and drawer pulls in a safe place. Have a think about whether these could be cleaned up with some metal polish or perhaps even given their own mini refresh with one of our Artisan Spray Paints. Another option is to invest in new hardware which can really help to create a brand new look and feel. In this instance, you may need to fill and sand the current holes ready for the new. 

It's easier to paint kitchen cupboards doors when they have been removed from the cabinetry. This allows for easy access to all surfaces and details. Keep all hinges and screws in a safe place for later. You can also draw a quick sketch of your kitchen and label the doors near the hinge spot which will make the re-fit process a lot simpler at the end. 

If your cupboard doors are currently bare wood then you’ll need to seal any knots which will help to produce a nice smooth finish. Again, if the doors are bare wood, you’ll need to apply one coat of Craig & Rose 1829 Undercoat in order to prime the surface ready for painting.

For melamine or laminate kitchens with a glossier finish, sanding with a fine sandpaper or sanding block before the undercoat is applied is an important step and one that will ensure your paint has a surface that it can adhere to well. All types of surfaces will require a good clean using a sugar soap solution and sponge to remove any dust and grease. Finally, remove any traces of soap with warm water and leave to dry. 

Use dust sheets to protect any nearby surfaces that aren’t being painted and masking tape to protect areas such as adjacent tiling.  

Choosing Colour for a Kitchen

Charlotte Gaisford chose soft, powdery Swedish Blue for her scheme.

@Applebeehome opted for our dramatic green shade Angelica for the cupboards, combined with Chinese White on the wall panelling.

Selecting a colour for your kitchen cabinetry can seem like a daunting task. Gone are the days of whites, neutrals and greys being the only option here. More and more we are seeing an inspiring selection of shades used across surfaces in the kitchen which can create a really unique look that reflects your own personal style #UnsameYourKitchen. It’s also worth remembering that you don’t need to choose the same colour for your top cupboards as the bottom. By opting for a paler tone at the top and a darker shade at the bottom, you can create an eye-catching scheme which will also feel light and airy too. 

Which Finish is Best?

For this project we recommend using our 1829 Eggshell or Gloss finish depending on the level of sheen you require. These paints are designed to withstand the atmosphere of a typical kitchen and their high durability will stand up to the multiple wipes and splashes of a busy home. 

Painting Your Kitchen Cupboards

Firstly, its important to give the paint a very good stir, then, using a high-quality synthetic brush and/or a short pile roller, apply a coat of your chosen colour, remembering not to overload the brush with paint. This will avoid visible drips and produce less brush marks – the paint will even out better as it dries. 

Top tip: Paint the backs of the doors first, leaving the edges unpainted. This is so you will have a place to grip when you turn the door over. 

Don’t be tempted to over roll the same area too many times as this may begin to lift paint off again.  At the end of each coat ‘feather’ the roller downwards with very light pressure to smooth the finish and lay pigments in the same direction.  Leave the suface to dry for 4 hours before you apply your second and final coat.  

Its ideal to leave the finished surface of the paint for around 7 days before its wiped down. This will give the paint the chance to fully harden and develop the protective, durable finish that it has been designed to achieve. 

Refresh the Walls

Giving the walls a fresh new colour can be another great way to give your kitchen a cost-effective refresh. For detailed guidance on this project, click here.