How can I make over these Melamine cabinets?


We bought our first house about a month ago and the kitchen is awful. Can anyone point me in the right direction for updating these cabinets as cost effective as possible? Excuse the clutter, still getting settled!

q who has redone melamine cabinets what worked and what didn t

Just to give you a taste of what we're dealing with!

  9 answers
  • Kelli L. Milligan Kelli L. Milligan on Nov 18, 2019
    Oil based paint sticks best. The biggest secret is making sure the are clean. Clean with TSP then go over with alcohol.

  • Congratulations on the new home! Kelli is correct. Spend the time to paint them, and if done properly will buy you several years until you can decide what you want to do next and save up for it. You may not be over the moon with the kitchen as is, but trust me it is way better than what I have at the current time. Paint solves a multitude of issues. Good luck!

  • William William on Nov 18, 2019

    70's European style cabinets. My crew and I installed tons of these. They were the in thing at the time.

  • Lady Suzane Myles Lady Suzane Myles on Nov 18, 2019

    I was told by an expert to use sugar soap sheets, (I used Selley's)Once you have done this thoroughly, then wipe down with a clean rag. The next thing is to use a Grip-Lock primer I used White Knight prep-rite) this maximises adhesion of the paint you want to use and you won't have to use sandpaper.

    PLEASE use protective gloves particularly when doing the sugar soap other wise you will burn your hands.

    I hope this answers your question, have fun and enjoy the finished product.

  • Ellis Ellis on Nov 19, 2019

    William's right--while shopping for houses, I've seen tons of these. Several homeowners had painted them, and they looked great!

  • Vivian Roger George Vivian Roger George on Nov 19, 2019
    Congratulations 🎊🎈🎉. I too have these cabinet. Purchased the house new in the 90s and I’m still rocking with them. Basically we have the same layout. As years tumble by I do pray one day I can totally remodel my home a room at a time. Best of luck with your decision. Please post a picture

  • Judy in Canton. Judy in Canton. on Nov 19, 2019

    Have you thought about wallpaper? There are many wood grain looks or a textured paper that you can paint over.

  • Debi53 Debi53 on Nov 19, 2019

    Follow the directions for cleaning and priming that you have been given by others. They are spot on. Paint the wood and the laminate all the same color. Then add modern hardware to finish off the update. Since your appliances and countertops are white, consider going with a darker color for cabinets. A soft gray, aqua, or some other color that works with your color scheme. Don't be afraid of color. It will make your countertop look so much better and add interest to a basic kitchen. Choose a color you love and go for it.

  • Holly Lengner - Lost Mom Holly Lengner - Lost Mom on Dec 12, 2020

    There are some great posts here that can help guide you:

    Home and Garden DIY Ideas | Hometalk