Asked on Oct 18, 2017

Outdated Honey Oak Cabinets.

Janet PanosMaryTheresa Lee


I would like to change the appearance of my kitchen cabinets. I still would like to be able to see the wood grain. What would be the best way to do this?
11 answers
  • Cynthia H
    on Oct 18, 2017

    I've pondered and researched this one, as mine are a similar color. A glaze is one method. Take a look at these:
  • Carole Alden
    on Oct 18, 2017

    I clean them well and let dry then paint and then using an old rag rub the paint off so there is only a touch of color left. Practice first on inside door or something else. Can do this with pair wood also. I used this technique before on a sculpture that I wanted to give a tree feeling to. Think on this awhile, those look like really nice cabinets, not old and beat up.
  • Janet Pizaro
    on Oct 18, 2017

    White wash them and change the hardware
  • Nancy Turner
    on Oct 18, 2017

    You could take citristrip and use it on an out of the way spot to see what finish you would have left. If you lighten them it would also bring out the wood grain. I did that to a set that was much darker than yours and the stripped wood was beautiful and lightened up the kitchen immensely. All I did was clean them up and put on a few coats of clear polyurethane.
  • Janet Panos
    on Oct 18, 2017

    Hello! Here is intricate information on updating your oak cabinets while leaving some of the wood grain look. Be forewarned that a project like the is very time consuming — as stated in the article — and you will want to make sure you have adequate ventilation!

  • Fauxgal
    on Oct 18, 2017

    You don't have to take your doors down to paint them. Just use an artist's brush around the inner hinges. IF you don't want to paint the entire insides, paint the outsides (of course), the insides of the doors, and the front facings of the inside shelves.
    Oak has a grain that pretty much cannot be covered up without a LOT of work.
    Don't use your kitchen while in process. OR use very, very lightly.
    So, start with cleaning them really well.
    Then electric sand them in the direction of the grain only. Clean that off.
    Wipe it down with white rubbing alcohol.
    IF you want to be sure that the areas around your stove adhere well, then you can oil prime in those areas that may have picked up grease in the grain of the wood.
    Buy quality, soft, brushes that are made for acrylic paints.
    I recommend PPG/Porter Paints Advantage 900 paint, in semi-gloss sheen. It is very, very durable.
    Paint thin coats on, and let each coat dry overnight.
    Sand very lightly between each coat.
    In the end, once the color has built up sufficiently, you will not need to put a sealing poly coat on.
    Paint takes 30 days to fully cure. But you can resume using your kitchen after a week. Make sure when you clean in the future, that you don't spray them with spray cleaners. Just gently clean with soap and water.
    IF your weather is wet for very long, then you will need even longer before you use it. Good Luck!
  • Lisa S.
    on Oct 19, 2017

    These are in great shape, I would leave them as is. Clean and polish really well. Get new hardware - really nice hardware, it will make the biggest difference. I did the same for mine, and a couple people who have been in my house many times, thought I had gotten new cabinets. The hardware can make the biggest difference. AND it can be finished in a very short time.
    • Mary
      on Oct 22, 2017

      you could paint the hardware to what eve color you want what you have is very unusual &expensive looking.which most are now daysit would be a pretty big chunck to replace them.changeing your kitchen color is a good idea.if you want them darker you might could antique them.looking forward to seeing what you do.i have cherry i am waiting to see.thanks for sharing.
  • Diana Deiley
    on Oct 21, 2017

    Wow, two options....paint or polish. I'm with the polish. Actually I'd clean them very well, let dry, then apply a wipe on polyurethane in either satin or gloss (your choice) to bring out the luster and beauty of the wood. Absolutely change the hardware. A polished nickle finished handle would just add the perfect touch to those beautiful cabinets. Best of luck.
  • Theresa Lee
    on Oct 21, 2017

    Try changing your wall paint and/or look at lighting options. A different color can change the tone of the cabinets without touching them.
  • Mary
    on Oct 22, 2017

    maybe try amber colored shades on fan
  • Janet Panos
    on Oct 22, 2017

    Hello Mary - Yes, either choice is fine but if your cabinets are laminate, a gel stain works best.
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