Decorating & Design

December 3, 2008

Kitchen Cabinet Makeover

Instantly update kitchen cabinets with trim moulding and paint.

Q. Our cabinets need some help. They are larger than normal and are just pieces of plywood that have been stained a dark cherry. We were thinking of a dark burgundy with white and maybe routing the edges to add some detail? Help!

— M. Jones

A. Giving your cabinets a facelift is a great idea. Start by prepping your cabinets with a light sanding so new paint will adhere well. Install simple trim moulding onto the face of the cabinet doors. Think of empty picture frames fastened onto your doors, leaving a good 3” from the edges. Once painted, this will give the illusion of recessed panel doors.

Instead of a dark burgundy, paint the cabinets a warm neutral like Celery Salt (OC-136) from Benjamin Moore. A cream, like White Dove will also work well. Paint the new cabinet door mouldings and the cabinets the same colour for subtle effect. If budget permits, think about retrofitting the cabinets on either side of the sink with glass panes. This will really add sparkle to the room and make it seem even brighter.

Consider installing crown moulding all around the room, painted a creamy white, like Benjamin Moore’s Ivory White (925). Don’t forget to paint the walls the warm white as well.

Replace your cabinet hardware with simple knobs for the doors and bin pulls for the drawers, all in a handsome dark, oil-rubbed bronze finish.

A mirror over the sink mimicking a window is clever; think about replacing it with a much larger, framed mirror, for more impact.

Replace your pine shelf over the sink with a stainless rod system (Ikea carries them) the same length as the new mirror. You can then hook on a stainless steel shelf as well as any accessories you might want accessible, all in stainless for a cohesive, up-to-date look.

Check out this video of H&H staffer Trish Snyder’s eco-friendly kitchen.