White distressed cabinets enhance the appearance of a century home or even shabby chic cottage. Making the cabinets seem desperate, however, instead of cheap and worn, requires some patience and preparation. Splurge on a quality oil-based paint, quality brush and new cabinet pulls. New cabinets, made to seem desperate, will distress your pocketbook. Spend a bit extra to make your do-it-yourself project look like you didn’t.
Scrub the cupboard doors, bases and drawer fronts with water and soap. Rinse by wiping with a damp rag and allow to dry overnight. Remove the cupboard doors. Place the hinges someplace secure for reuse. Remove the cupboard handles and pulls and discard (if you don’t plan to use them ). Employ painter’s tape to areas requiring security (like floor or ceiling molding).
Sand all surfaces you plan to paint. Edges and finishes are easily sanded with an oscillating tool plus a sanding accessory. Designs carved into the cabinet doors can be sanded with a rotary instrument and either sanding drums, abrasive fans or flapwheels. This step will ensure that the paint adheres well to the surface.
Use a damp, clean cloth to wipe the cabinets free of any dust. Wipe thoroughly so the surfaces are free from dust before painting. Permit the cabinets to dry thoroughly.
Use the dark stain with a clean rag by rubbing with the grain of this timber. Adhere to the stain manufacturer’s directions and apply one to two coats of stain in this way. Permit the cabinets to dry immediately.
Apply 1 coat of white paint to the surface of the cabinets. Permit the paint to dry. Sand the cupboard surfaces gently by hand. Wipe the dust from the cupboard fronts and doors, with a damp cloth. Apply a second coat of paint and let it dry thoroughly.
Sand the cabinets, either by hand or with a handheld oscillating instrument with sanding attachment. Sand in random spots to mimic the way the cabinets will use with age. Corners and areas around manages show obvious aging on classic pieces. Rub the surface until the underside brown coating appears through the white.
Add additional distressing, if desired, by gently hitting the cabinets and doors with a hammer or string to create tiny nicks and dents.
Use a damp rag to clean out the cabinet surfaces. Replace the cabinet doors on the cabinet bases and add cabinet hardware. Give the cabinets a thorough look over to find any areas needing more”distress.”