When we moved into our house 5 years ago, when I was 5 months pregnant with Eliza and I was so happy that the kitchen was okay, we had looked round so many houses that had dodgy or just plain disgusting kitchens I was relieved to find one I didn't need to fix straight away!
Fast forward to the present and this kitchen is now the bane of my life, okay that might be a slight exaggeration but I really hate the melamine kitchen doors. Sadly we don't have enough money to build the kitchen of my dreams (we are talking taking down walls here 🙈) so I wanted to make it look pretty on a budget.
For a few years I had wanted to chalk paint the kitchen but I was worried about waxing so many doors and the up keep of having to re-wax every 6 months to a year. The units are in good condition, the melamine is not peeling or chipped - this is really important if you are going to paint your kitchen as paint cant fix these issues. If yours is coming away already, its better to peel it all off and paint onto the MDF underneath.
When I became a stockist for Autentico Paint, I fell in love with the Versante range and I'm not just saying that because I stock it (promise!). This paint is simply amazing! It is designed to be wipeable, suitable for outdoor furniture and in high moisture areas. The best part is that it needs no waxing - yes, really no waxing or sealing!!!
To prepare the units to paint, I removed all the handles (its worth mentioning that my doors can be opened with no handles, this might not be the case for you so its worth checking before you take them all off!!) and gave them a good clean with Omniclean. Omniclean is an industrial sugar soap and gets off all the hidden grease and grime, prep is everything for getting the perfect finish.
For the colours, I chose Autentico Versante Eggshell in Cement and Pigeon Grey. I wanted to go all dark but my kitchen is quite small with one small window so it just can't take the dark on top. The cement is on the top units and the Pigeon Grey is on the bottom. I chose the eggshell over the matt as its slightly more scratch resistant and has a slight sheen to it which I like for a kitchen. Both finishes are designed for high moisture areas and to be wipeable.
This was after the first and second coats, you can see after the first coat (on the right) that you would be questioning what on earth you were doing! But you just need to remember that the first coat is for adherence and the second and subsequent coats are for coverage. I know that can be hard when it's looking like above! It also is looking more wishy washy than I would expect on solid wood because the melamine is so shiny, on a terracotta plant pot you can get away with one coat the coverage is so good.
With Versante (It comes in Matt or Eggshell) it is so durable that it is pretty much impossible to sand, so your brush marks will be visible. To reduce mine as much as possible I used a good quality brush and then always went in the same direction with my brush strokes on each unit. Then on the final stroke I did one from top to bottom in one go, you can hardly notice them on my doors.
When using Eggshell paints you should work from the outside to the centre and I wouldn't recommend painting in either really hot or cold weather as the paint can either dry too quickly or take forever. Around 21C is perfect!
I left all the doors on my units, this was because I didn't want them to drop or go back on squint and to be honest I wanted the job done quickly. With the kids around and the weather, I didn't have the time to take them all off and put them in the garden. It didn't make any difference to my finish as I got a small paintbrush to do the fiddly bits around the inside fixings.
I painted the inside and outside of the doors, I had a litre of each colour but I only used approximately half a tin? There was three coats on the majority of the doors, though I got away with two on some. It dries in around 30 minutes but you should leave 4 hours between coats, it took me 3 evenings in total to go from start to finish. Each litre tin costs £23.95 so its a really reasonable way to transform your kitchen without breaking the bank! This paint can also be used in bathrooms and I did my outdoor furniture with it (check out my post HERE) which has lasted really well outside.
Once the handles were back on, it looked amazing!!! I am so so impressed with how easy it was to do and the finished result. I have lived with it for around 2/3 weeks now, regularly cleaning the doors and there has been no chipping, wearing away or staining.
I painted the walls to pure white, though now I am unsure what to do with the tiles! I am thinking of just painting the tiny tiles in the same colours as the kitchen doors to try and tie them in a bit better.
If you want to give it a go yourself, the entire Autentico range of colours is available in both the Versante Matt and Eggshell finishes and in several different sizes, 100ml, 500ml and litre tins. If I don't have a certain colour you are after then just ping me a message and I get it in, in a couple of days :)