Feb 8, 2013

A Little More On The Process of How We Redid Our Melamine Cupboard Doors

So, I have gotten a few emails, a few questions about how we actually did the cabinets.  Did we leave the oak trim at the bottom, etc.  I meant to write this post last week, but a little late than never, right?


For the original reveal please click HERE

The first thing that we did was take the trim off the bottom of the cupboards.  As you can see in this picture, there was some missing already, but once the trim was gone, the doors weren't long enough. 


So, to fix this we added a piece of wood to the bottom.



 It wasn't our first choice, but we ended up using plywood, only because it was the only thing we could find at the hardware store that was the exact width as our doors.  It's not perfect, but it was a solution and is only visible from the inside anyways. 



We used 1/4" x 1 5/8" finger jointed pine. It was in the trim section at Home Hardware and was really the only choice they had, and we looked around at a few other stores, too.  (Lowes, Home Depot and Kimballs, which is a locally owned hardware store.)

Then my husband cut the trim to the length of the doors and used finishing nails to hold it in place.  The next step was for me to apply the wallpaper.



With the brand I used, I found that it expanded once it was wet, so after the first door, I cut it just under a 1/4" smaller than I needed.  Once the wallpaper was dry, my husband added trim at the tops and bottoms of the doors.  So, the wallpaper is held down at the top and the bottom by the trim.  Now, that I'm writing this and thinking about it though, I suppose we could have made it a little easier on ourselves by applying the wallpaper first and then all of the trim on top of it.  Hindsight....

We used wallpaper from Lowe's.  Unfortunately, I don't have the label anymore, so I don't remember what brand it was.  We used one full roll, plus a teensy bit from a second roll just for the last door.  (Which was kind of annoying, because it was sooo close to only needing the one roll!  Oh well, I have some left for another project in the future, right?!)


A couple things we learned along the way:  Adding trim to your doors makes your doors thicker and therefore they need slightly more room to open!  The row above the sink was a bit tricky when we went to hang them back up.  My husband had to do a bit of adjusting on the hinges to make them all work.  He said that he just had to tweak the hinges and keep adjusting them until it worked.
He adjusted the doors so that the gaps in between were square and then he leveled everything by remounting the hinges up or down. If you need extra gap you could possibly add a shim under the hinge. Or you could cut your doors narrower, which my husband was thinking about doing if he hadn't gotten it to work.
Fortunately we only had to worry about it on the side that had the sink and the dishwasher, the other side was open.

Also another thing we did was switch some of the pairs around and hung them upside down so the plywood addition would be less noticeable inside. 

Another thing that I forgot to mention was that my husband actually rebuilt the drawer fronts.  He cut a piece of plywood to the right size and we added the trim and wallpaper.  He figured it was just as easy to cut a piece of plywood the size of the drawer then to cut a piece to add to the top of the drawer where the oak trim was originally.  On the edge of the drawers I added wooden veneer to cover the plywood edge.  Because the drawers were smaller in scale, we also used a smaller trim  (1").


Also some one asked if my doors were textured.  Well, they weren't totally one hundred percent flat, there was a bit of a slight texture to them... enough that dirt could get stuck in them! 

Hope that answers some of your questions.  If there's anything I haven't covered here feel free to contact me and I'll try and help you out!




33 comments:

  1. Thanks. Went to Lowe's online found Allen Roth prepasted paint able bead board wallpaper $20.00 roll. Blessings! Lara

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  2. It looks like a new kitchen, well done.

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  3. Thank you for sharing this!Your kitchen looks beautiful!Love this look!
    xx
    Anne

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  5. Cynthia, your cabinets look amazing! Great job!

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  6. The cabinets look great! We have the same style in our basement guest suite kitchen. I would love to update them sometime.

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  7. Wonderful job, I have the same cabinets and would love to be able to update them. Two questions; do you think you could have used a thin pine wainscotting instead of wallpaper? Might hold up longer? And I would love to be able to do something to not have to remove the oak trim; maybe filling in only the exposed ends?
    Thanks for the pictures!

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    1. I have the same cabinets also and was thinking of sticking strips of that vynal cupboard covering stuff over then spaces

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  8. Wow! Your cabinets look incredible. I love when you can take something totally builder basic and make it look high end - and you achieved it.

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  9. what a great idea to use the wallpaper! looks fabulous!

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  10. Hi! I absolutely LOVE this! My husband is wondering what you did to remove the trim without breaking the door and how to attached the new pieces to replace the wood trim on the bottom. Any insight would be wonderful!!! Thanks so much :)

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    1. My husband used adjustable channel lock pliers to remove the original trim. He kind of wiggled the piece back and forth until it broke off. He attached the new pieces by drilling and countersinking holes up from the bottom and screwing the new pieces to the door. I would recommend not using plywood because it's harder to drill properly.

      Hope that helps!

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  11. I love the transformation! We are thinking of doing a similar project in our kitchen. Did you do anything to the outside edges of the doors to make it look like one solid piece?

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    1. You could add veneer. We didn't have room on the cupboards, because the trim added extra width and my husband had to adjust the hinges so the doors would all fit back on. We did add veneer to the edges of the drawers, though.

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  12. Hi Cynthia, these look great! Did you use anything to seal the cabinets?

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    1. We used semi-gloss paint, which doesn't require anything to seal it. If you decide to seal yours, make sure you choose a product that won't yellow white paint.

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  13. wow! Thats fabulous.. i have a kitchen very similar and was looking for ideas what to do with it.. You have inspired me!

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  14. Your kitchen looks great. I'll be doing the same thing soon. Can you help me explain to my sad why doing the wallpaper before the molding makes more sense?

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    1. I believe we added molding to the sides and then put on the wallpaper, than added the molding to the top and the bottom. Adding the molding on top of the wallpaper gives added insurance that the wallpaper is not going to lift up on you.

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  15. Thank you for replying. How is the kitchen holding up?

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  16. I used your technique and our kitchen looks great! Instead of adding the plywood, we just turned the oak trim around and re-nailed them in. Also, I applied wood fillers to the nails so they are less noticeable after painting them. It's definitely easier to apply the wallpaper first then add the 4 trims around the borders. And yes, it does give more assurance that the wallpaper won't lift up. I started this past Saturday and finished yesterday... 4 days. Now just need to upgrade my counter top and appliances.
    Thank you again for this DIY post, it was definitely worth it! Project under $100!

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    1. Hi I am thinking of doing this to my kitchen as well and I had a question if you don't mind..since you are adding trim on top of the existing door it becomes thicker and "2 pieces" what did you do to hid that it's 2 pieces at the end of your cabinet...where the door is exposed? Thanks in advance!

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  17. Hi, How do the cabinets look a year and a half later?

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  18. Awesome Idea! What a great, inexpensive upgrade. Plus, the white cabinets help to light up the room.

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  19. Yes, I'd love to know how they've held up. This is exactly what I need to do in my soon to be new to me kitchen -- and baths -- that are 80's ugly

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  20. I'd also love to hear how it has held up. I'd like to know how washable the painted wallpaper is. Now that some time has passed is there anything else you would have done differently if given the opportunity to go back for a re-do? thanks so much. I really enjoy your blog!

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  21. Hi I am thinking of doing this to my kitchen as well and I had a question if you don't mind..since you are adding trim on top of the existing door it becomes thicker and "2 pieces" what did you do to hid that it's 2 pieces at the end of your cabinet...where the door is exposed? Thanks in advance!

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  22. Couldnt you just put the raised plywood piece over the wood trim on bottom of cabinets rather than removing it and adding a piece?

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  23. Nice work! How has the wallpaper held up? We have the same cabinets and they make me want to cry. Love what you did with yours (:

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  24. I agree with everyone else. It is exactly what I want to do. I like the idea of flipping the door around and not removing wood trim at bottom. I like the cost of this project as well.some people use breadboard wallpaper, some use breadboard panels (very thin). Easier with wallpaper for cutting.

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  25. I've been planning to do this for soooo long! The same exact way you've done here! Now I'm inspired more than ever to do this! I love it, it looks like a whole new kitchen!

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