Posts Tagged ‘Bob Vila Nation’

How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets

How to paint kitchen cabinets - project complete

How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets

Just DIY It!

Hi HELLO family – well its ready –  How to paint your kitchen cabinets is happening right here tonight!  I wanted to take my time writing this post to capture all you need to know to do your DIY project.  So, how many of you did your homework?  Did you visit a paint shop and ask those questions?  Have you chosen your brand of paint?  Did you order the Cabinet Video from The Magic Brush?

Great job!  Now let’s get started on how to paint kitchen cabinets the Hello I Live Here way.

What you need:

Cordless drill or screwdriver
Krud Cutter or Trisodium phosphate (TSP)
Rubber gloves
Protective goggles
Putty knife
Spackling compound or wood filler
120- to 220-grit sandpaper
Tack cloth or rag
Painter’s tape
Drop cloth
Paintbrushes, 1.5-inch tapered and 2-inch-wide synthetic fiber brushes
Microfiber paint rollers, 2-3 inches wide
Paint tray and stir sticks


First, you really need to think about the paint you want to use.  We chose to use General Finishes Milk Paints to complete our project.

How to paint kitchen cabinets - General Finishes

We like this paint because it has a very good self-leveling agent.  This helps to level out the brush marks as the paint dries for a super smooth finish, which for us was the only choice since we were hand brushing everything. Because we are doing a cottage theme in the villa, we decided on Antique White for the tops, and Queenstown Gray for the bottoms.  We used 1 quart of each color (not bad right?)

Then, drop cloth cover all surfaces you do not want paint on, like your counters and floors, and use painters table around edges to keep paint off back-splash if you have one, and side walls.  We elected not to drop cloth the floors or the counter tops because, well, we are ripping both out.  Wood floors will be installed and new counter tops are on order along with back-splash systems.  But, you may not be doing those upgrades, so make sure you prep these areas before starting.

Next, remove those hinges and hardware.  (Note: I did not empty out my cabinets because I am a freak and clean mine every couple weeks to remove debris.) The best way to paint cabinets is to remove the doors and drawers. Don’t ever paint over the hardware – it’s an expensive mistake and keeps doors and drawers from closing correctly. Now, map out that kitchen! Map just how the doors and drawers go together in the kitchen by labeling each piece with its position.

How to Paint kitchen cabinets - label doors and frames


This helps you reassembly fast and easy. Use a cordless drill or screwdriver to remove hinges and hardware. If your cabinets have adjustable shelves, be sure to remove those — and the hardware that supports them — from the cabinets – ours set far enough back so we had no need to remove them as they do not touch the frames.

Once you are done mapping out the door return system, then you are going to scrub the cabinets like crazy!  Strap on the goggles, glove up and Get in there – remove all the junk and grease that all cabinets have on them. You can use TSP or Krud Cutter.  We used Krud Cutter an all-purpose, water-based, multi-task cleaner, degreaser, stain remover, and exterior wash. It removes even the toughest stains. Leaves no residue and requires no rinsing. It’s non-toxic, biodegradable, non-abrasive, and non-flammable.  Spray or wash on and let dry thoroughly before the next step.  You can purchase Krud Cutter at a paint supply store or your local Lowe’s or Home Depot.

How to paint kitchen cabinets -Krud Kutter

All clean and dry? Remember, if your cabinets are in great shape and free of nicks and dents, you can degloss with Krud Cutter and you not have to sand.  But if your cabinets are in bad shape and need work, now is the time to use a putty knife and the wood filler to fill any nicks or dents with spackling compound or wood filler; let dry. Sand the surface with 120- to 220-grit sandpaper to dull the surface and smooth down any imperfections. You can use a small sanding block from Home Depot to softly sand the areas and the frames and doors in all places. Use a tack cloth or damp rag to remove the dust after sanding.

Now that you are done, prepping, mapping, and cleaning the doors and frames, it’s time to do the prep work.  If you are using new hardware, make sure they are either the same size as what you are removing, or fill those holes with wood filler, and sand lightly to remove any hard surface – you want them smooth.

Prep work is important to the validly of the finished product.  Select a primer that’s recommended for the type of surface you have (wood, metal, or laminate) and have it tinted to the color of the top coat.

How to Paint kitchen cabinets  - primer the doors


This is especially important if the surface is dark or stained because the original finish can “bleed,” or be visible, through the top coat.

Again, this is where your paint stores like Reinke Decorating or Flanagan Paint & Supplies come in handy.

Consulting with the expert at your paint retailer can help you decide between a waterborne or solvent-borne primer.  We used Zinsser primer special for our type of cabinets (they were not the real wood we thought they were – so this worked great). We used a good Pro Purdy brush for primer, and worked it all in with the roller first, then stroked over with our Pro Purdy brush.  We let dry a couple hours as directed by the manufacture.

How to Paint kitchen cabinets  - primer the frames

Once we finished priming, and it dried – we moved on to adding our paint color.  We cracked open a quart of General Finishes Queenstown gray and applied the first coat to the face frames and the back of each door using the same method as when we primed the cabinets.

How to Paint kitchen cabinets - Bottom Cabinets Queenstown Grey


Rolled, then worked it all in by hand brushing – we did 2 coats letting dry 2 hours between each coat and following the manufactures directions.  Once both coats were completed and dried, we added the top coat to seal the product using General Finishes Professional Sealer with a satin finish.  Once dry we stood back in awe as we could not see one brush stroke!  AMAZING!!!

The second day we did the same process to the upper cabinets only we used the Antique White.  We again, primed, let dry, added 2 healthy coats of antique white, let dry 2 hours between each application, and then followed that with 3 coats of Professional Satin top coat by General Finishes.

How to paint kitchen cabinets - General Finishes Antique White

Once the paint finish has dried completely, it’s was time to attach drawer pulls, screw the hinges on the doors, and hang the doors on the frames, according to the map we made. We then slid the drawers back into place and stood back to enjoy the new cabinets we created.

How to Paint kitchen cabinets - Antique White top cabinets two coats

See not so bad right?  Well, do you think it’s easy?  Are you going to try to DIY it now that you see how to paint kitchen cabinets?  DIY can be rewarding if you take your time, and enjoy the process.  After saving a bucket load of money by DIYing our cabinets, we were able to afford the new counter tops and wood floors.  Yep both – you can see our wood floor story on the blog – as those are already in and took us about 4 weekends from start to finish.

Hope you learned How To Paint Kitchen Cabinets!  Please share a comment about your DIY kitchen cabinets experience!  Until our next blog post.

Paint your Kitchen cabinets-finished look

Linda 🙂



Disclaimer:  All information provided are the opinion and property of Hello I Live Here, LLC. and Hello I Live Here is not responsible for your outcomes. Sharing, copying and/or transcribing of this content in any way other than for your personal usage without written permission is prohibited. (c) Hello I Live Here, LLC. all rights reserved.

Wood Floor Installation Techniques

Wood floor installation techniques - dining and living rooms finished

Wood Floor Installation Techniques – Part 1

Well, we finally decided to bite the bullet and remove that hideous beige carpet and install wood floors throughout the upper level, about 1,100 SQ FT.  Every since we moved in to our villa we always knew we would do the wood floor installation; it was just a matter of when.  Well that day finally arrived, we could no longer procrastinate.  What I hope to share with the Hello I Live Here readers are the wood floor installation techniques, tips and tricks we learned with this big undertaking.

How to Measure Square Footage

Our first and most important wood floor installation technique step was correctly measuring the square footage and adding 10% for waste and miss cuts (Trust me, you will have miss cuts).  My first wood floor installation technique tip is to divide your house into squares and rectangles and measure the width and length for each.  For example, measure the bedroom, hallway and closet separately.  Then multiple the length by the width and add them for a total.   This may seem a tad technical, but you want to make sure your measurements are accurate.  Here is the wood floor installation technique for calculating square footage for wood floors using the three sample rooms in our diagram:

Bedroom  – 13’6” x 9’10” = (((13’  x 12”)+6”)/12 x (((9’  x 12”)+10”) = 133 SQ FT
Hallway  – 5’3” x 3’7” = (((5’  x 12”)+3”)/12 x (((3’  x 12”)+7”) = 19 SQ FT
Closet  – 6’4” x 5’8” = (((6’  x 12”)+4”)/12 x (((5’  x 12”)+8”) = 36 SQ FT

Wood Floor Installation Techniques - Measuring Rooms

Trestlewood provides a square footage calculator on their website.  However, for the true DIYer, use the spreadsheet method so you can save your measurements for later use, like determining how much baseboard you need to buy.

Also, checkout Hosking Hardwood for some other measuring tips and wood floor installation techniques.

 What to Purchase for Wood Floor Installation

With your measurements in hand, purchase your hardwood floors and allow them to acclimate inside your house for about one week.  We purchased our wood floors from our local Lumber Liquidator.  While we are on the topic of purchasing, here is our list:

Air compressor
4 in1 16 gauge  nailer/stapler
Thresholds and trim
Miter saw blade
Skill saw blade
Dremel multi-max wood blade
Utility knife blades
5 in 1 painter’s tool
Knee pads

We purchased a 6-gallon pancake air compressor and 4in1 18 gauge nailer/stapler combo kit from Lumber Liquidators, which we will sell on Craigslist when we are done (This will be cheaper than renting a compressor and flooring nailer).

We decided to use Dream Home Quiet Walk underlayment.  It is made from recycled material, provides a moisture barrier and helps smooth any minor floor imperfections.  It was a bit more pricey but worth the investment.

For thresholds and transitions we purchased a stair nose for the stairs leading to the basement, a square nose threshold for the sliding glass door, T-moldings between the bathrooms and the laundry room and quarter round for the front door.  By purchasing these at the same place we purchased our wood floors we didn’t have to worry about matching the stain.  Below is a picture of the most common thresholds.

Wood Floor Installation Techniques - Thresholds

Other wood floor installation techniques you will need including having several different saws and new blades for each.  We purchased a new 100 tooth saw blade for our miter saw.  This ensures we have nice clean cuts.  For cutting the wood floors to fit around doors, against walls and under door jambs we used our Ryobi skill saw and a new wood blade.   For undercutting the door jambs we purchased a new wood blade on our Dremel Multi-max.  To cut the underlayment, we purchased a 25 pack of new utility knife blades (Wood floor installation technique tip – The underlayment needs a really sharp utility knife to cut, otherwise, it ends up ripping).  The final item we purchased was a painter’s 5 in 1 tool, which proved invaluable for removing baseboards and carpet padding staples.

Wood Floor Installation Technique – Preparation Tips

Carpet Removal

Since this was a DIY installation we decided to lay one room at a time.  My hubby took Thursday and Friday off from work.  The goal for the first four days was to install all the wood floors in the living room, dining room and master bedroom, stopping at the kitchen.  We started Wednesday night and worked in phases.  Phase one was to move the furniture in the first two rooms to other parts of the house.   Next, using our utility knife we ripped up the carpet in our living room and family room.  We cut the carpet into long 3’ wide strips.  We then removed the carpet padding and rolled them both together and tied them with twine.  This made it easier for disposal.

Wood floor installation techniques - remove carpet

Carpet Pad Removal

The next step was very time consuming, removing the carpet pad staples.  At first we tried using pliers, but this was a royal pain.  So I searched for online DIYer techniques and found a cool website that explained how to use a 5in1 painter tool for quick staple removal.

Wood Floor Installation Techniques - carpet staples

Check for Subfloor imprecations

While removing the carpet staples, we also checked for subfloor imperfections.  It is critical that your wood floor installation be done on top of ¾” minimum subfloor.  Any imperfections need to be addressed otherwise; your wood floors will squeak and not lay flat.  We got lucky.  There was the occasional screw that stuck up a bit and had to be tightened flush to the subfloor.  You may need to remove the screw, and install a new one, depending on how damaged the screw head is.

Baseboard Removal

Next up was baseboard removal.  This can be tricky, especially if you plan to reuse your baseboards.  Since we decided to purchase new 5” baseboards, we weren’t too concerned with destroying the baseboards.  However, there are several wood floor technique tips if you want to save your baseboards.  First, score the chalking with either your utility knife or your 5in1 painter’s tool (We are using a 5in1 painter tool in the image below).  Be careful not to mar either the wall or the baseboards, take your time.  Next, hammer the 5in1 painter’s tool between the baseboard and the wall and gently move the baseboard from the wall.  Next, use a crowbar, or similar tool and, placing a piece of wood between the crowbar and the wall, gently pull the baseboard from the wall.  If you are careful, you can reuse the baseboard.  You will need to remove the nails that remain in the baseboard and putty over the holes however.  The last baseboard step is to use your nail puller and remove any nails remaining in the wall.

Wood floor installation techniques - score baseboard

Clean the Debris

The final step was to sweep then vacuum all the dirt and debris left behind from your demo.  Afterall, you don’t want to lay new floors on a dirty subfloor.  We have a handy Ryobi battery-powered handheld vacuum that worked wonders getting between the wall and the floor.

RyobiVacuumWe worked late Wednesday night and had the two main rooms completely prepared, so Thursday morning we could start the wood floor installation.

You may be wondering why we didn’t prep our master bedroom. The simple answer was we needed a place to sleep.   So, the master bedroom was phase two, but more on that in Part Two of Wood Floor Installation Techniques.

And finally, readers can also stop by Bob Vila nation and find other tips for installing wood floors


Update Using Spray Paint

Update using spray paint

Update Using Spray Paint

Why Buy It When You Can Make It!

Well, hello all you HELLO readers – I know it’s been awhile since my last post, so today we are going to ease back in by showing you how to update your old goods to new pretties, because my thought…Why buy it when you can make it – update using spray paint!

Update using spray paint
Spray old glass ware for new look

I have been cruising Pintrest and other awesome sites for great ways to update some old items in our home.  I hate buying things like door knobs when they all work, or lamps when they still turn on, or even old clear vases when then still hold items well and have nothing wrong with them.  So today, I am going to show you some projects from fellow bloggers who have done just that … updated their old items into new pretty ones. Hence the title, update using spray paint.

Update using Spray Paint
Old lamps from Goodwill go new again!

Spray paint these days is a remarkable tool.  I always keep about 20 cans in different colors on hand so I can change things up when I get tired of looking at them.  Rustoelum and Krylon are my two best cans!

Update using Spray paint  Update using Spray paint


Let’s look at our first project updated using spray paint.  Casa de Kemper shows on their blog how their old brass chandy goes black and beautiful with Spray paint.  Just look at the update they provided with minimal work!  Can you believe it’s the same chandy?

Update using spray paint
Case de Kemper used black spray paint to update their old brass chandy.

Next up, we see that Handle the Heat does an awesome job showing their update using spray paint by completing a DIY door knob makeover.  This truly is one of the quickest and easiest way to revamp your old ugly door knobs for cheap!  Do we like them better than the brass?

Update using spray paint
Handle the Heat door knob update using spray paint
Update using spray paint
Handle the Heat Update using spray paint for door knobs

Next up, I Village goes for the Goodwill lamp update with Krylon’s best paint and shows you how to turn boring into fab using mercury glass while updating using spray paint.  Look at the difference between the two – AMAZING….am I right?  Bet you would pay a bunch for these at a good retailer like Pottery Barn 😉

Update using Spray Paint
Updated Goodwill lamps using spray paint
Updating using spray paint
Pottery barn Lamps

Our life is blessed beyond measure shows us how to update and old window frame to an awesome new mirror.  Stop by their blog and see the show as she makes magic happen using spray paint.  Look at those results!

Update using spray paint
Old window
Update using Spray paint
New window

Now that you have seen these amazing updates using spray paints are you going to give it a try?  I have and made some awesome things for our home using it.  Why toss it away when a can of spray can give you a wonderful new update.  Go ahead give it a try!  Find us on Bob Vila Nation, PinterestFacebook and Hometalk.  You can also follow me on Instagram!

Have an awesome night everyone! I promise the blog will be back in full swing for some new building projects starting in June.  Blog ya soon!


DIY Dresser Country Chic Paints

DIY Dresser with Country Chic Paints

DIY Dresser Country Chic Paints

Hey guys – It’s been a long while since I posted anything and I apologize for that but it’s been crazy busy at Hello I Live Here –  so to make up for it today let me tell you about our DIY Dresser Country Chic Paints today.

DIY Dresser Country Chic Paints

We partnered with Country Chic Paint to show you this awesome new chalk style paint that has quite a following already. We completed a lovely dresser of an older style that just screamed for a bright setting and Tropical Cocktail color and Simplicity white, followed by a coat of the Tough Coat Clear, which lived right up to its name.

DIY Dresser Country Chic Paints

This DIY Dresser Country Chic Paints was started by cleaning first with a little cleaner.  I let the dresser dry completely and wiped down with a second wet cloth so there would be no OxiClean left that could attach to the country chic paint, I do this with every brand of paint I use regardless, it’s just a good practice to start with a clean furniture – and this is the reason why – look at how stunning this!

DIY Dresser Country Chic Paints

Then I got started – I painted the sides and top of the dresser first with white creamy, Simplicity color.  It went on like silk, was easy to control, very low streaking with the brush, and dried in an amazing chalk like finish.  I completed 2 coats on the dresser, not because the first coat did not cover, but because it is my preference to paint every piece this way, regardless of the expense.  I love rich furniture and 2 coats complete this for me.

DIY Dresser Country Chic PaintsWhile drying, I moved on to the drawers where I added the Tropical Cocktail color of a turquoise blue.  It’s amazing, vibrant and rich on the piece.  It too moved on the brush like silk, and dried with that wonderful chalk paint finish we have all come to expect from other brands.

DIY Dresser Country Chic Paints

Using the rest of the Simplicity White Paint – I added this lovely Martha Stewart Stencil from Michaels.  I love how it brought the piece to life. 🙂

DIY Dresser Country Chic Paints

Once the piece dried, I coated the whole thing with 2 coats of tough coat.  It worked amazing, dried tough, but gave a low shine finish you want for cleaning, but that lovely appeal you want when your furniture is making a statement.  Check out those burlap handles from Hobby Lobby 😉 fancy!

DIY Dresser Country Chic Paints

Now that you see the amazing results on my lovely dresser, what do you think?  Let me tell you a bit about this wonderful paint, because Hello I Live Here will be using this line again   One happy DIYer here 🙂  All because of Country Chic Paint.

DIY Dresser Country Chic Paints

Country Chic Paint is a chalk and mineral based paint that is specifically designed for us Dryer’s.  This awesome paint is VOC Free, contains no harmful solvents, and could not be easier to use, just look at our wonderful results!  This fab paint collection allows you to make a piece look beautiful with a smooth matte finish and you have to love the delicious color choices like this Tropical Cocktail.  The paint line can be fully distressed for that antique old finish, or the very popular shabby chic look everyone is craving these days.  For me the best part – very little prep work – and fabulous results and don’t forget tutorials!  – You heard it hear – Hello I Live Here is all in!  Want to try it – Click here! 

DIY Dresser Country Chic Paints

Become a newsletter subscriber and get the inside scoop on new retailers in your area and the best deals around town on this awesome paint.  Are you are retailer wanting to carry a new line?  You must check out this awesome paint.

DIY Dresser Country Chic Paints

Try the product – I am sure you will love it as much as we did.  The results are stunning.  Hello I Live Here wants to thank Country Chic Paint for partnering with us on this delicious dresser.  You are a wonderful company and brand I will be using again.

DIY Dresser Country Chic Paints

Well, that’s our post for today about our DIY Dresser Country Chic Paints.  Stop by tomorrow as I show you a wonderful product called Wood Icing.  I think you will be amazed.  Don’t forget to find us on Facebook, Hometalk, and Bob Vila Nation where we share our fun post with all their readers too 🙂



How to Make Trivets

How to Make Trivets

How to Make Trivets

Hello everyone – Happy Thursday 🙂 Let’s talk about how to make trivets.

How to Make Trivets

When serving hot dishes, these little hunks of iron, can be both functional and pretty.  You can use them for the hot pot, or as a decorative feature on a side table like we did.  Trivets are functional kitchen items that can protect your dining table, or your expensive kitchen counters!

Today, I decided to use up some more scrap wood and make a quick project where I could show you how to make trivets. Yesterday, our DIY Picture Frame was made from the same scrap wood pile, and featured on Bob Vila Nation.  We always find it a great thing when you can use up scraps and make something functional at the same time. 🙂

DIY Picture Frame by Hello I Live Here

We simple took a small piece of wood, 3/4″ PureBond furniture grade scrap that was already the perfect size and shape. We added some of our left over planking from our DIY Bench project and attached after trimming the wood with our Ryobi Miter Saw, and using our Ryobi nail gun, and Titebond wood glue.  We added a small piece of left over square scrap to the inside, the added a left over piece of decorative molding from the Home Depot around the outside cutting on 45 degree angels.

How to Make Trivets

Hello I Live Here - attaching brace

Using Annie Sloan Chalk paint in, Old White, French Linen, and Versailles complementing each other in a stripped pattern, followed by the old white on the outside ring.  I then added three decorative iron keys I purchased for $3.00 each when I visited the Bug Store on one of our Hello I Live Here field trips.

Annie Sloan paint

Look at this great piece?  It’s pretty stunning if I do say so myself 😉  Functional, fun, and beautiful piece of art all at once.  But the best thing, we made this project completely from scraps and I got to use the keys I bought over 3 months ago!  How great is that 🙂

How to Make Trivets

How to Make Trivets

How to Make Trivets

I hope you enjoyed our post tonight on how to make trivets.  Thanks for stopping by Hello I Live Here – We love when you visit and Leave us comments.  See ya next post!

Linda 🙂

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