Part II – Kitchen Cabinet Makeover

Here it is…my Cowgirl/Red Licorice Kitchen. Whew! That was a lot of work and it took longer than planned because we had family reunion slap dab in the middle of my project, but it was a nice break, so I’m not complaining.

I mentioned in Part I that I would explain a little more about why I used wax to finish the kitchen cabinets. I also said that I would give a estimate on how much a job like this would cost as a DIY project and how much I would quote this job for. I want to start by saying that this is not a typical project. It is in my home so I used advanced paint techniques and bold color choices that I probably wouldn’t suggest to the typical client. I have bold taste and I have the ability to repaint at anytime if I need to tone the colors down a bit.

So first off…the reason I LIKE WAX, is  for the ability to touch up and blend in repairs without being able to tell the boo-boo ever happened. Okay, so you are saying to yourself…why would there be deep gouges, scratches and other issues that might need touching up? The answer…CAUSE ANYTHING PAINTED HAS THE ABILITY TO SCRATCH with enough force. I have kids, dogs and LIFE that happens every day. Not to mention, these cabinets are NOT even WOOD, so it’s not a question of if…it’s when it scratches, I can make the scratch disappear in minutes with very little effort. With any other finish they would need to be stripped, sanded and completely repainted. With Chalk Paint and Wax you can paint right over the old wax and then re-wax, making it all blend together…like it never happened. Now that is magic!

Now lets get down to the nitty gritty details of the job…

This job it not for the faint of heart or a first timer. There were moments that I wanted to sit in the floor and cry, but I put my big girl boots on and pushed through. I also made mistakes…I’m a human and I do make mistakes…the important part is having the knowledge to fix the mistakes. This only comes with experience and it’s the most valuable tool there is.

So all you DIYers out there here are the numbers…

Hours
China Cab 12
Island 15
Wall 22
Total Hours 49

and here are the supply costs…

Supplies
Zinsser Primer $14
Chalk Paint ™ Primer Red (2) $70
Chalk Paint ™Emperors Silk $35
Chalk Paint ™Florence $35
Spray Paint (Hardware) $7
ASCP Clear Wax (2) $50
ASCP Dark Wax $25
Paint Brushes (2) Purdy Cub $35
Ultimate Wax Brushes (2) $50
Wiping Cloths $10
Total Supply Cost $331

Now for those of you that do not feel comfortable with tackling a project of this scale, here is what I would have charged for a job like this. Please note that this was more than just a single color paint technique. It was actually two colors (the second being a wash).

Labor
Cabinet Doors (Remove, Clean, Paint, Reinstall) 26 x $55 $1,430
Drawers (Remove, Clean, Paint, Reinstall) 12 x $40 $480
Pulls (Remove, Clean, Paint, Reinstall) 38 $25.00
Hinges (Remove, Clean, Paint, Reinstall) 52 $25.00
plus Island (same as 4 extra doors) 4 x $55 $220
Total Labor $2,180

Now add the supplies that labor cost and for about $2500 you have a whole new look. That is significantly less than replacing all the cabinets for a kitchen this size which, by the way is 15′ x 15′.

Here is how I come up with the quote. Each cabinet door is $55 and each drawer is $45. Obviously I’m not painting just the door and drawers…I’m also painting the cabinet itself, but this is just an simplified way to figure the cost quickly when doing a quote. Now there are exceptions to this rule when the kitchen has a large island that doesn’t have doors all the way around I just figure what it would be if the doors were there. (it’s simple, no hard math for me)

I just want to say this about painting a kitchen versus painting a piece of furniture…if it doesn’t turn out right, it’s a little harder to change out than a dresser or a table. It is a LOT of work and it is a major room in your house. It can also make or break your house if you are trying to sell it so make sure that you are prepared for the job if you are going to do it yourself.

Another note…there are a variety of techniques that could change the cost of this job, such as painting the inside of the cabinets and the doors, which is a lot more work and more money, but creates a very nice, finished look. You might also want to distress the doors, trim out flat panels or fill in holes for new hardware, etc, etc…which all changes the cost.

Overall it was a fun project and I’m glad it’s finished. Now who needs a kitchen makeover? I gettin’ bored already…I need a new project or I’m gonna start gettin’ into trouble, lol.

Happy Trails…

~Denna~

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8 thoughts on “Part II – Kitchen Cabinet Makeover

  1. I love it, I think its very cool. Can’t wait to visit Mount Dora and see the store. Have things to sell, maybe I can do it there, they really are awesome pieces.

  2. I always wondered how much people charge for this type of work – thanks so much for sharing! That is a lot of work though!!

    • Yes, this job was a lot of work, primarily because it wasn’t real wood and because I used to colors. I will be doing another kitchen soon that is real wood and will give a comparison quote to show how much less that type of job cost. Having real wood cuts out the primer process and this will only be a single color process so it will take half of the time and cost considerably less.

  3. It is stunning, absolutely a work of love I can tell. I want to paint my cabinets now! You can help me pick out a chalk paint color. This post and the cost breakdown is such great info to have! It’s so motivational for those of us that need a little kick in the arse to get on it.

    OK.. now though that you need a break I am all for us getting into some trouble!!

  4. This looks amazing. I love the burst of color. I’m fairly neutral (some might say boring!) with my color palette and might not have dared even one piece in a red, but after seeing how amazing this turned out, it makes me want to be a little more bold. Thanks!
    ~Erin
    Neaten Your Nest

  5. I love the bold colors you chose and painting the inset areas complimentary colors is always a fave trick of mine and done so well here. Paint is such a great way to make a huge change quickly. I’m about to do a remodel a tiny kitchen myself and now I’m seriously considering this wax paint idea. Thanks for sharing this dramatic re-do!

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