Saturday, March 25, 2017

House Update

Here is an update on the kitchen cabinet staining project!
I am working on those last 2 upper doors, then will move onto the lower cabinets.

I thought I would share a couple of tips I have learned through the process in case anyone out there is looking to do the same.

We are using Minwax PolyShades which is the stain and polyurethane in one. It can go over poly surfaces, however only if going darker. If one was to go lighter, the cabinets would need to be stripped.
First I clean the door with mineral spirits. Then I sand it with 220 grit sandpaper which helps smooth out any areas needing it but also aids in better adhesion.

Between coats I am using 330 grit for a very light sanding to remove any dust, lint etc. 

Airborne particles are the enemy here since they do settle on wet stain. The only way to not have it be an issue would be to work in a sanitary room that has nothing in it and work naked...not going to happen.  So this is a constant battle.

Another great thing about this stain job is the inside of the doors really doesn't need to be done so we kept them as is. That way any future owner can see the wood grain. Since wood is forever, I am sure someone will decide to strip them years from now!

When staining the door, a bit will find its way on the back side.  However I found that simply running a paper towel underneath along the edges when a side is done will do the trick!

Being winter, I have been waiting 48 hours between coats just in case. The coats need to be fully cured before adding another. So a tip I learned online to save the messy work of cleaning the brush everyday - put it in the freezer!

So I wrap it well in foil, then in a freezer bag. This must be air tight! 

It does not freeze although there is some ice build up when opening it. I use that piece of foil to wipe it off so I don't need to worry about dust particles getting on the brush. Then I use a new piece of foil at the end of that session.

I give the brush a good cleaning though once a week to prevent too much build up.

In addressing the handles which we chose to keep and paint, they needed a scouring first. They were full of gunk! I realized that the buildup must have been the initial coats of paint and poly from years ago since it was way more than dirt.
Well mineral spirits were not cutting it for me! So then I started washing with with dish soap to dissolve any grease and dirt. Then found sanding with 220 grit paper was the way to go! This took all the nastiness off so I could reach the brass base.
To the painting station they go with a trusty can of Rustoleum. We also spray the hinges and screws that show. The handle gets 2 coats and the other components only 1 since they barely show up and do not get handled.

Once I am done staining, I will move onto that dated ceiling fan. Since it works great, it is worth trying to salvage. We can purchase a light kit for $40 that will change out that old glass piece and compliment our other light fixtures.

I will attempt to paint the metal components oil rubbed bronze and the paddles espresso to compliment the cabinets. I think it will work!

Thank you for stopping by! If you are attempting such a project and have any questions, please let me know. ~Val


  1. A lot of work but it's paying off bigly!

  2. so much work! but it is looking fantastic Val

  3. The cabinets looks great, Val - definitely worth the effort!
    Your kitchen is coming together nicely and looks very elegant :)

  4. Great tip about putting the brush in the freezer to save cleaning it each time.
    All your hard work is definitely paying off Val it looks great :D

  5. It is sure a lot of work. But it looks so beautiful!:)
    Have a great weekend Val!

  6. My goodness, Val, you really are working so hard on this, and what a beautiful job you are doing! I love the look of the cabinets, and the brass hinge looks amazing! Would never have thought of using sandpaper on it. You are truly an inspiration!
    Have a wonderful weekend!

  7. This is coming out fantastic, Val, don't forget to stain the ceiling fan blades. ;O)

  8. The difference is huge. So beautiful!

  9. I agree with Duni, it does look very elegant. I have several chores around the house, that needs to get done, but I am really not looking forward to the mess that comes along with it. Next weekend we'll tackle the balcony: cleaning and adding some fresh, colour full plants!

  10. Wow Val, seriously, you should be so proud of yourself! Most people would just junk everything or rush it and have it look horrible! You are doing such an amazing job! Thanks for the advice!!! I think hubby would like it, if you did your work in the nude! LOL! Big Hugs!

  11. It's looking so fabulous!! Thanks for al the great info and sharing your progress with us.

  12. Val, you are doing an excellent job! Your kitchen looks so good! I can imagine the challenge of the airborne particles! That's frustrating, but I would never know what you went through by seeing the result. Keep it up and keep us posted.

  13. It truly is a lot of work to redo a kitchen, but you're doing an amazing job. I love the look of your cabinets. They are so rich! I remember having to soak my handles in Simple Green to get a lot of that gunk off. It was gross.

  14. Looking good! It's definitely a big job!

  15. You are doing so well! This job sounds like hard work. I love finding tips online. I cleaned my Sabbath candlesticks last night with toothpaste. Worked a treat!

  16. I love the new darker cabinets! Looks very clean and modern already!

  17. My dear Val, long time no talk! I hope you are well, my friend :)

    I thoroughly enjoyed seeing the updates on your home and oh my, your kitchen looks amazing!

    Hugs to you!


Thank you for stopping by! I love reading visitor comments! ~Val