A fresh coat of paint on cabinetry and furniture is one of the more simple and effective home improvements you can do. Provided you can do it.
The first step is to “remove all cabinet hardware, doors, drawers and hinges and label each piece to ensure it is reattached in the proper location,” according to the experts at Home Depot Canada.
“Whether you’re painting or staining, never work with the door hanging,” says George Cuccovillo, president of The Painters Group. Place it on a flat surface so it’s easy for you to work on.”
Next, thoroughly clean all surfaces. Cabinetry or furniture, the key is to have a good base on which to apply the paint. “Wipe it with a cloth and cleaner. Give it a good sanding. Patch up any holes or gaps with caulking and give it a good sanding,” says Cuccovillo. “Then prime the piece before painting or staining.”
When applying a stain, the amount of time it stays on the wood determines the intensity of the colour. For beginners, Cuccovillo recommends applying the stain, drying it with a rag right away and repeating the process until the desired colour is achieved. It’s safer because “you can always go darker, but lighter, you have to start from scratch.” Finish with a water- or oil-based varnish, depending on the desired look. “You can give it a flat finish, semi gloss, satin, or high-gloss finish. The oils give more of a high-gloss finish and the water-based more of a flat finish.”
Paint is more forgiving, but it takes longer.
“With paint, the colour you see is the colour you get. You don’t have to wait to rag it. Just brush it on,” says Cuccovillo. To achieve a smooth surface, he recommends using a sponge roller. For a more durable finish, he suggests going with an oil-based paint.
But always wait for the first layer to dry before applying the next coat. The time it takes to dry can depend on the temperature in the room.
“Generally, oil paint takes a few hours to dry,” he says. “But if the weather is humid it can take longer so you have to make your own judgment. If the paint is still tacky, it’s not ready.”
You can do as many coats as you want with paint, but be careful not to lose the details in the piece. And since the desired finish is already in the paint, there’s no need for varnish. You did it.