Monday, February 18, 2008

Whitewashing Cabinets

If you want to modernize those old cabinets and cannot afford to replace them, try Whitewashing them. Whitewashing is an inexpensive technique that will give your cabinets a southwestern or country look, depending upon the colors you choose.

All you will need for the process is white paint (enamel has a very nice look on cabinets), the complementary color paint (we'll use green here), two paint brushes, denatured alcohol and LOTS of rags. Also, a test piece of wood to practice the technique on and to have as a sample before actually whitewashing your cabinets.

Start by cleaning and degreasing the cabinets with a solution of water and TSP which can be purchased at your local hardware store. Since you will have to remove the doors of the cabinets anyway to paint, it will be easier to remove them before cleaning. You can then take the doors outside for cleaning and painting, they will dry much faster outside.

Once your cabinets have been cleaned and dried, begin by applying a coat of white paint. Start at the base of the cabinets and work your way to the doors. This way, once you are ready to re-hang the doors, you can be sure the base will be completely dry. Depending on the climate, paint can take longer to dry in humid conditions, so take that into consideration when tackling this project. The rule of thumb is to wait at least 24 hours before going to the next step.

Once the bases are covered with a coat of white paint and totally dry, apply a coat of green (complementary color of your choice) paint directly over the white coat. Again, wait until this coat is completely dry before proceeding to the next step, which is to apply another coat of white paint over top of the blue. Allow 24 hours of drying time for the third coat of paint, now it's time to Whitewash.

First using your practice piece of wood, dip a rag into the denatured alcohol and rub it against the wood as lightly or as heavily as you desire, depending on the consistency you are looking for. If you want just a little of green to show through, rub lightly, for a bolder look, rub heavily.

Your now ready to revitalize the cabinets. Be sure to change rags once they become tacky. If you find you've rubbed too much color off, you can always repeat the steps.

After you have completed whitewashing the doors, attatch them to the base cabinets. Add coordinating handles that can be found at your local hardware store. You'll now have an updated, modern kitchen. Party Time!

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