Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Rust-Oleum Countertop and Cabinet Transformations

When we bought our 1988 home a few years ago, it was clear that no updating had ever been done on the kitchen. The laminate countertops had pieces missing and the cabinets had very little finish left. The cabinets were light wood and the counter top were a yellow-brown color with mock wood grain. This was a high contrast from the deep red paint on the walls.

We chose the Rust-Oleum products because they claimed a professional looking product for an affordable price. We chose Onyx for the counters and Cabernet for the cabinets. We did the counters first so we wouldn't mess up the finished cabinets. 
First you sand down the counters and wash until no dust is left. Then you paint them , spray with a wetting agent and cover with chips from a chip spreader. After it sets, you sand down the chips to a semi smooth finish, wash until no dust remains and then paint with a clear top coat. 
The kit comes with almost everything you need and wonderful instructions. I am very happy with the results as they are a thousand times better than what we started with. 
There are a few cons. The paint is not as thick as the video demonstration would have you believe and we had some trouble getting it to stick in some places. When we sanded down the chips, you could see counter top in spots where the paint didn't dry right. Some of the places added to the granite look, but I chose to cut other places out and I redid them with better results, however; there are two spots by the sink that look awful! Luckily, one is hidden under the dish drying rack. Another spot dried a little shinier than the rest. No one else seems to notice the spots until I point them out. Also, it was extremely messy and we are still finding the chips in drawers and cabinets. 

The cabinets also turned out great. I love them! The kit and instructions are great and it was easy to complete if you follow the instructions. First you use the inclosed deglosser to basically wash away the top coat. You then rinse the deglosser off and then begin the base coat. The base looks like a cross between a stain and paint. You put on two base coats following the grain of the wood. It is very important that you follow the grain exactly or your brush strokes will show when it dries. Also, make sure you don't stop in mid board and then come back to it or you can see the starting and stopping points. Thankfully, I learned this on the first coat and was able to hide my mistakes. The only part of the instructions I would skip is placing the doors on screws. This pulled the paint off of mine even though they had been dry for a couple days. 
Next you put on the decorative glaze and gently wipe it away. We read a lot of reviews that said "there wasn't enough glaze." I had more than enough. I made sure I didn't try to put it on thick like paint. I just lightly brushed it on and didn't press hard when wiping away. Make sure you pay attention to how you pressed when you got your desired results so you can make sure you do it exactly the same on each door and cabinet.  
After the glaze is dry, you put on a protective top coat. I was expecting this to be like a clear glaze, but it was more like runny glue. And it does run. The same rules apply when it comes to following the grain of the wood, but it's harder to do. The top coat runs and pools in places and you need to smooth them out right away or it won't dry clear. When you coat the doors, be very careful to wipe any drips that work their way around to the other side of the door. Since you have to do the back of the doors first, this will mean the drip will show on the front side of the door. Not good. 
Overall, I love the results. My kitchen looks so much better and everyone notices it right away. This is a great way to get a "new" kitchen without having to replace the actual cabinets or counter tops. Cheaper and less waste. 

On a side note, the painters tape pulled the paint off the wall, so now we have to paint on top of redoing the floors. The floors are so ugly!