Do Your Kitchen Cabinets Look Tired?

Do your cabinets look tired?
OR, are you tired of your cabinets?

The easy, affordable and beautiful solution is to paint them using Chalk Paint decorative paint by Annie Sloan…the “No Stripping, No Sanding, No Priming” “World’s Best Paint!”
PicMonkey Collage The Purple Painted Lady Painted Caninets susan Old White

If interested in painting your cabinets but are afraid to- please don’t be. All of us at The Purple Painted Lady are here to help you through your project.

Check out the amazing transformation that my customer Marian Harrison completed in her kitchen. Between the two Before & After photos, nothing changed, other than the cabinets were painted and waxed.

purple painted lady chalk paint

And that old bathroom vanity? Freshen it up!

The Purple Painted Lady Vanity Before & after Chalk Paint PicMonkey Collage

Amazing transformation, yes? I think so!

Many customers want to paint their kitchens but have questions, such as:

* What prep is there when painting a kitchen?

ANSWER: Before painting, it is necessary to clean your cabinets. When you cook, fry, broil or boil whatever you are making, even with a fan- steam goes into the air. It eventually settles on your cabinets. If you have children or a dog, who knows what else might be stuck to them. Get some Odorless Mineral Spirits and wipe down the cabinets using a rag or even a ScotchBrite Scrubbie. Note that the image of the Mineral Spirits shows different packaging that is available. The key thing here is to purchase the regular Odorless Mineral Spirits. NOT the environmentally green Mineral Spirits which is shown in the white packaging in the right of the photo. Mineral Spirits The Purple Painted Lady - Green vs Odorless regular

* Will the Chalk Paint adhere to the sides of my cabinets, they are made of a laminate material?  Can I paint my Laminated (faux wood) plasticie (is that even a word?) end caps?

YES- you can paint the laminate end cap. But you will want to lightly sand in the same direction you will apply your paint with a 180, 200 or 220 grit sanding block or paper.  ALWAYS sand in the same direction as the wood grain. (even if it is a faux wood grain.)

Then, clean the surface per the insructions we provide.

Thin your paint with a little water and paint a uniform, thin coat- making sure to “lay” your paint from top to bottom at the very end of every stroke- so you get rid of any small segmented brushstrokes. Then….WAIT 24 hours till you apply coat number two. Don’t try to scratch the paint with your thumbnail during this period…because you will be succussful.

There is a lot of chemistry in paint and you need to allow that chemistry to do it’s thing! Once all done painting, apply the wax top coat per the instructions and voila… will be amazed!

Painted Kitchen Cabinets Courtney Crabb MY CUSTOMER The Purple Painted Lady

* I have old cabinets and the protective top coat is worn, especially around the hardware. Is there anything I should do?
ANSWER: YES! You will most likely need to apply shellac to your doors. Shellac is a “sealer.” that means it seals in the surface – preventing stain or wood tannins from bleeding through to the paint.

We prefer the clear Zinsser shellac. Again, note that shellac is a sealer so it will seal the surface preventing stain or wood tannins from bleeding through your new paint. I recommend getting the quart of shellac and using a rag, wipe down all the doors and the cabinet frame just like you would wipe down your kitchen table when you clean it. You want the rag moist but not dripping. I cover the whole cabinet in a linear fashion, making sure to NOT miss any spot and to catch the edges also!

Kitchen Cabinet Stephanie Kapral MY CUSTOMER The Purple Painted Lady Chalk Paint

Spraying the shellac using an aerosol can is also an option. I have done this many times. On a small job this is good, but remember to spray 2 coats. Aerosol cans of shellac will cost more than buying the quart, so for large jobs- I recommend the quart.
Kitchen Cabinets shellac Zinsser

Zinsser shellac comes in quarts and aerosol containers. If you have a well ventilated space and take your doors down- you can use the spray, but I feel the quart and a rag will give you better coverage. I usually will do 2 coats.

If you already started painting and did not shellac prior, and then realize that you are getting bleeding- you can still apply the shellac. Just allow the paint to dry thoroughly and then apply the shellac. when to use shellac on kitchen cabinets bleed tannin

* Do I have to take the doors off to paint using Chalk Paint?

ANSWER: NO…you can leave the doors hinged and on the cabinets when painting. Many do this! However, when I am painting a kitchen- I typically take the doors off and will number them. I then lay them down flat and process them a bit like a production line. If you choose to paint them while they are hanging and plan on painting the hinges, just lightly dry brush the hinges so they are not “caked” with paint.
Raw Cabinets

* How do I calculate how much paint I need?

ANSWER: I will take a piece of paper and make a drawing of the kitchen layout. Literally drawing out the each section of cabinets. I then note the height, width and depth of the cabinets. You need these measurements in order to determine the square footage.

Calculating the square footage is very easy. For each section, multiply the height times the width. The result is your square footage for that section.

Once you have this initial number- understand that this would be for only one coat of paint. A typical kitchen project will take 2 coats. Sometimes, even 3 coats of paint depending on the color you select and the color of your cabinets.

Because you will probably need 2 coats of paint- you will need to double your square footage in the end. Also- don’t forget to paint the underside of your top cabinets. This is the part that is directly over your counter top. And- are you planning on painting the inside of the door? If yes, (and most do) account for that in your total.

A quart of Chalk Paint® will roughly cover about 150 square feet. So take your total amount of square footage and divide by 150. The number from this calculation will be how many quarts of paint you need. And always error on the side of an additional quart so you have enough for your project.
Old Ochre Cabinet with name

* I want durability- will this paint work?

ANSWER: Yes! Chalk Paint® is extremely durable and when you finish the paint with the wax- it becomes even harder. Something I suggest to my “kitchen Cabinet” painting customers is to apply a uniform – thin even coat of paint and then wait 24 hours before painting the second coat. There is a lot of science that goes into paint products in general. In the first 24 hours- the paint will really bear down and tighten its grip to the surface. I was once told to think of the paint molecules as floating around with space between them, then as it dries over that first 24 hours- the space between them gets smaller and the paint gets tighter against the surface. Allow science to do its thing and for the first coat of paint to have 24 hours.

* What is the process when it comes to painting cabinets using Chalk Paint®?

ANSWER: If you are looking for texture, use the Chalk Paint® directly from the quart in the consistency it is made in. However, if you are looking for a more traditional smooth finish, consider applying your first coat directly from the quart. Once the first coat is dry, pour some of your Chalk Paint® into another container and add some water to thin it. I would say add about 10 to 15% water in comparison to your paint. Use a cheap measuring cup so you can easily reproduce this thinned mixture. Apply your second coat of pant with this thinned Chalk Paint®. This will allow to get a smoother finish and it will even stretch your paint a bit.
The Purple Painted Lady apply chalk paint thinned with water to cabinets during second coat kitchen bathroom

* Can I paint the cabinets outside in my garage?

ANSWER: Maybe! You should only paint pieces, cabinets or any furniture for that matter if it is at room temperature consistently. The same goes for all of your paint products. Never let them freeze or sit in a 100 degree garage. Temperature will effect your products. This recommendation applies to even while they are drying, curing and the time in between!

A space heater is not adequate and definitely not sufficient if only being used while you are in the workspace.

The best thing to do – is set up a painting area in the house where you know the temperatures will be within normal range consistently and that there will not be any excessive dust.

* Should I paint the inside of the cabinets?

The answer to that is really totally up to you. I always paint the back of the door, but not always do we paint inside the cabinet box. It will add more time and cost to the project and many people are fine with leaving them as is…so consider what is best for you. Consider though when it comes to the resale of your home- having the inside of your cabinets finished nicely is a plus!

* What type of brush should I use?

We recommend using a natural bristle brush. Annie Sloan has amazing brushes available-but I still like to use a 1.5 inch Purdy brush that has an angled brush. These are very nice if you are “cutting” an edge.

* How many coats of wax do you recommend?

I always apply two coats of wax on cabinets that I am doing. Three if I need to add a dark wax glaze.

Here is some additional high level information / steps to reference if planning on doing your kitchen.

Lastly- please consider using The Purple Painted Lady if needing to purchase your chalk paint on-line.

Kitchen Cab ReFAB workshop Facebook 2014
The Purple Painted Lady Kitchen BEFORE AFTER SUsan Old White 1

The Purple Painted Lady Kitchen BEFORE AFTER SUsan Old White 2
The Purple Painted Lady Kitchen BEFORE AFTER SUsan Old White 3

FREE T-Shirt Scarf Workshop on Feb. 12th (Registration Reqd)

Free Workshop? Why yes in deed at The Purple Painted Lady!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014 starting at 7:00pm – ending around 9:00pm.

Come and meet Annette – who is an up and coming children’s author! She will be hosting this event at The Purple Painted Lady.

Come and make a funky – fun scarf that you up-cycle from your husband’s shirt (or for that matter….any one’s shirt.)
Make your own scarf Annette

Please bring a cotton t-shirt that is similar in size to a men’s size XL. Other than that- all other supplies provided.

Registration is required by emailing Trish at

We are capping this off at 10 guests- so please do not register if you are thinking you “might” make it. : ) Make your own scarf Annette Portrait image

Minimum age – 12 years old and up

Plenty of parking is behind the shop.

** The top image shows the scarf wrapped twice around the neck.

FREE Hands On Chalk Paint Demo THIS Saturday, Jan. 25th at our Macedon location!

FREE Hands On Chalk Paint Demo THIS Saturday, Jan. 25th at our Macedon location!

Have you wanted to learn about Chalk Paint decorative paint by Annie Sloan?

Come and watch, listen and then help me paint a dresser!

Paint demo happens at NOON!

We are located at 77 West Main Street in the village of Macedon.
We have plenty of parking around back of our building!

And……we have some guest vendors that will be joining me too from 11- 3pm.

Indigo Moon Fibers
Indigo Moon Fibers- March 16

The Griffen Bakery
griffen bakery

K. Higgins & Co.
K Higgins

The Traveling Vineyard (Wine Tastings)

Critters 3D
Critters 3D

Betty Lou Designs
Betty Lou Designs

Sweet Pea Felts
Sweet Pea Felts

Do You Paint Pieces Professionally- Always Have A Contract

Some of you may be able to relate to this scenario ~ you learn about Chalk Paint decorative paint by Annie Sloan and decide to buy some. You get it, paint something in your home and everyone loves it.

Then all of a sudden…BAM! People are asking you to paint pieces for them.

If you start doing projects for others and don’t write up a contract- you are setting yourself up for an eventual problem.

Bed with before and afterI always write up a contract using Microsoft Word. Here are some things I account for when creating one.
Old White dresser Before and after

Always list out the following in a contract:

Note the customer’s contact information such as address, cell phone, email.

Specify the dimensions of the piece. This is especially important if you quoted the piece via email. Sometimes people make mistakes in estimating the size of their furniture. If it arrives bigger than what was quoted- increase your price since you will use more materials and spend more time on it.

Note down the required preparation you will have to do, such as cleaning, sanding out scratches, applying wood filler, applying shellac, etc?

Specify the paint color(s) that are to be used.

How many coats of each color will be applied- (sometimes I note a minimum of 2 coats of paint.)

What is the type of finish your client desires? (smooth, are visible brushstrokes ok?)

If you will need to sand to reduce brushstrokes (charge more!)

Does your client want distressing? If yes, how much? Do they want it just on the corners and edges- or more aggressive distressing on even some of the flat surfaces?

Specify the top coat you will use. I prefer wax! So, specify color of wax, number of applications of wax.

Will there be gilding applied? If yes, specify how heavy it will appear and approximate locations.

Will existing hardware be used? Or will new hardware be used? If new- do new holes need to be drilled and old holes filled? (requiring wood fill & shellac)

If current hardware will be used, will it be painted or left as is?

Are you painting the hinges or not?

What about the inside of the piece? Will it be painted & waxed? (charge more!)

I like to suggest a fun color for inside drawers.

Note if there are requests to change the contract after it has been signed – the customer will potentially incur an additional expense.

Do you offer pick up and delivery to and from the customer’s home? Account for this time and expense.)

Make sure that the piece is properly stretched wrapped for delivery to ensure safety. Include the cost of all materials in your quote estimate.

I always note that the piece is to be paid in full upon delivery. If payment is not made within 30 days of completion, piece becomes the property of “your business.”

Include an image of the piece you are painting “as is” before painting.

Always ask customers if there is an example on-line of a piece they want theirs to look like once done (include that “inspiration” image and url to find it again on line in the contract.) This will be very helpful for you when you go back to the contract later in time since it will remind you all that you need to do!

Add a notation that all hand painted pieces will have unique characteristics.

And lastly- the more detailed architecture on a piece of furniture equates to more time you will spend painting and waxing. Always make sure to account for that in your quote calculation.

I personally like to paint the back of all pieces I do and the bottom (but do not wax.) The “bottom” meaning if you were laying on the ground looking up – it is all painted!

Protect yourself after delivering the furniture by including a care tag for the customer so they know how to properly maintain their painted piece! I wrote a post with some suggestions on what to include in your care tag. Click HERE to read that post.

And lastly, I add a note that the “delivery date” is a target date and based on being a small business- adjustments may happen. (I do this cover to myself in case of delays) Have the customer sign off and date your contract and give them a copy. This was especially helpful last month when my husband and I experienced quite a few deaths in our families. For four weeks in a row, we lost someone. Between calling hours and funerals and emotional stress- it impacted me and my work schedule.
Well, I hope that this information helps you in regards to some of the things I account for in a custom painting contract. It is so important that you not only deliver an incredible, high quality piece to your customers that knocks their socks off, but also- protect yourself from a business perspective. Now- if you can help me in return….. : )

If you ever need to purchase Annie Sloan Products –I would hope you would consider doing so through me! (The Purple Painted Lady) I ship out every week day all over the US. I included a link below to my on-line shop below. We offer the lowest flat rate UPS shipping cost so if you are one town away or 10 states away- the shipping cost is the same. Also- it is my paint sales that keep me in business and allow me to be here to help you. (my shameless but honest plug) And I will be here to help you as you progress through your future project! And if I do say so myself- we offer the BEST customer service that you will ever experience!
Rochester Woman Mag Ad Proposal before and after
And lastly- if I was helpful to you- ….please consider leaving a comment on my Facebook business page sharing your positive experience or thoughts about The Purple Painted Lady. Click HERE to access my Facebook page.

Stay warm everyone!
Trish ~ The Purple Painted Lady

If you are interested in the child’s bed I did above- it was an additional project from the mural job I completed at a home. After I was done with the walls- I just felt the bed needed to weight the room better- so I stained it and added simple store bought letters that I painted in animal prints. I used Velcro to attach the letters. Super easy and cute! Here are some images of the mural I did.

Train The Little Engine That Could
Zebra JACKS Full wall shot
monkey elephant
lion with grass

Do You Paint Pieces Professionally – Always Wrap Pieces Before Delivering

Do you paint pieces of furniture for customers?

If yes, do you use stretch wrap to prepare them for delivery back to your customer?…

If your answer is “no” – you really need to get some. The stuff is awesome!

Stretch wrap

Today we are delivering a hutch and a buffet that I painted with Chalk Paint decorative paint by Annie Sloan using the color Graphite. I mixed three (1 ounce) bottles of India Ink in with the Graphite and it made the Graphite become a deep, rich black!

During the move, we are touching the hinges on the trailer, opening doors to get out, and the weather may not always be picture perfect. So, the stretch wrap totally protects a painted piece from all of those variables. And since the piece is painted in black- any little thing will be visible on it. Just like the example that in dark colored cars- finger prints, dirt and dings are more easily seen compared to light colored cars. Seriously- next time you are on the road- pay attention to the black cars and see how obvious the dirt is versus a white car. However, in my case- it does not matter what color I have painted a piece- every piece gets the “white glove” treatment and I use commercial stretch wrap all over to protect it.

Buffet Graphite India Ink Jan 2014

So, do you like the buffet? My customer requested that it be painted first with Greek Blue and then finished in “black.” The inside has that “Quiet Riot” effect that Annie Sloan references in her one of her awesome books since I painted the inside in Greek blue.

hutch buffet 2014 January Lower name

And- since this was painted in Graphite- by using stretch wrap, it really eliminates the issue of finger prints all over it. I just recommend that you wrap your piece just before it leaves your shop and unwrap it immediately once in place at your customer site.

So, if you paint pieces for customers, give them the “white glove” treatment and invest in some stretch wrap. It is awesome since it protects the piece and an additional benefit, is that it keeps doors and drawers from opening during the move. You do not need to worry as much if it is sprinkling out or in my case, snowing! It also looks very professional!

Uline is a great source for stretch wrap. Check out Uline HERE.

And….if you are interested in purchasing India Ink- click HERE.

If you are interested in purchasing Graphite Chalk Paint – click HERE.

Are you interested in purchasing one of Annie’s books – click HERE.

So, if you think the information I share here on my website is helpful- please consider LIKING my Facebook page. Click HERE to access my Facebook page and make sure to click the “LIKE” button that is to the right under the banner photos across the top of the page.
Facebook Interest Feed

Thanks so much!