Reluctant Renovators, Design Element #3

The cabinets: Using Rustoleum Cabinet Restoration (the larger size) for $149 at Lowes. We started on Friday, we had a four-day weekend to complete this project.  We did not complete it until we stayed up all night on the following Thursday — well, Rick stayed up all night, while I snoozed in my chair periodically waiting for him to call on me to help him — and we installed the new over-the-range microwave at 7:30 am just in time for hubby to start his work day.  We were in it to win it.

We removed the doors and deglossed all the wood, front and back, of each cabinet door and set them on 2x4s with drywall screws driven through them, so that we could work on the doors without marring the finish. We set out a long banquet table in our living room, and other card tables in the kitchen so that we’d have the space to lay out all the doors and do each step on them all at one time.

Doors numbered, deglossed, and up on nails, ready for bond coat
Doors numbered, deglossed, and up on nails, ready for bond coat

After deglossing, and a drying time of 1-2 hours, came the  first “Castle” gray bond coat. With 2-4 hours drying time between coats before we could flip them and start the next two coats on the other side.  I did the first side, while Rick worked on the frames of the cabinets.

2 coats bond coat
2 coats bond coat
This view is of door propped up on the 2x4 and drywall screws
This view is of door propped up on the 2×4 and drywall screws

When we had painted the doors and cabinet frames, I realized that I didn’t want to add the decorative glaze, as this gives the appearance of aging, and our home is a 1970s tri-level, so, I wanted a clean, modern look.  This took one stage of the process out of the equation, and left us with sleek, beautiful cabinets.

This entire process from removing doors to bond paint took us through to Monday evening with drying periods.  So, we worked on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings after work to put on the top coat. Here’s something we read on another person’s blog.  The top coat can get goopy, like glue, but will stay white after it dries, so be careful if you are doing this to clean up any goopy areas.  Even with as much sweat and caution we used, and this was the most intense part of the whole process, we still had a couple of places it gooped. It’s tricky.

But, when we went from this:

old cabinets
old cabinets

To this, in just 4 weeks:



And this:



And this:


And this:


And this clever way to display and use pretty hand towels under the sink as seen on


With a total price of this, including drop cloths, plastic, gloves, numerous brushes, hardware and the restoration of the island, everything we bought for this project:


We were thrilled to death!  Our mission was accomplished, and under budget with change to spare. We’d gone from Reluctant Renovators to Renovator Renegades in 4 short weeks.  We have other missions in the works now.  Hubby is watching DIY shows, just give the man some guidance from the Property Brothers, and he’s a handy man.  Hmm, I wonder what would happen if he began watching the cooking channels?


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