Updating oak kitchen cabinets

80’s Oak Kitchen Cabinets Here is a photo of a typical oak kitchen mostly installed in this era of kitchens.

When I am standing in a kitchen that looks very much like this one, and I recommend that this kitchen be painted white or cream–as soon as the words out of my mouth–the wife’s face lights up and the husband looks horrified at the prospect of painting THE WOOD!

If there’s an appropriate alternative, I’ll list it.

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Especially those white melamine cabinets with the strip of oak on the bottom of each door.

Please consider the era of your home when you are designing your kitchen!!

So the only way to extend the life of it is to prime it, paint it, and install new hardware. Here’s a ‘before’ picture of a kitchen I did for a client in West Vancouver with another designer, Jan Romanuk back in 2005.

This client moved in with the cabinets already painted but you could still see the grain of the wood through the paint colour.

Since I do this all for free out of the goodness of my little heart. This is probably the least fun step, but you must protect your floors, counters, walls, tiles, or any area that may get stain on it.

Otherwise, plan to get exactly what I list to get the same results I did. -Masking tape AND painter’s tape (you could just use painter’s tape, I use masking tape because it’s cheap at Dollar Tree…so in other words, painter’s tape is expensive, so I only use it when I absolutely have to)-General Finishes Java Gel Stain (YOU CANNOT SUBSTITUTE THIS!

Once you sand, make sure to thoroughly wipe off all dust with a tack cloth. These aren’t exact figures, so don’t go whip out your measuring spoons, but my point is use a slightly generous amount, but Also, unlike other staining methods, do not wipe it off. Make sure the stain doesn’t glob up on/in corners, that’s when cheesecloth/gauze is handy. I bought some painters pyramids to prop up my doors so I can knock out both sides at one time. So although my way may not be the purist way in terms of staining, it still worked fabulously.

It’s simply the most timeless look and the one you’d least tire of over the years.

The most beautiful kitchen renovation in a 1905 home that I have ever seen was designed by Susan Dossetter and Andrew Skurman and featured in House Beautiful magazine.

If you have a house circa 1905, this is the kitchen that should be in it!

The antique butcher block by the island is on casters, so it can go anywhere it’s needed.

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