The Trouble With Paint……

The trouble with paint is that it doesn’t always do what it says on the tin!

I’m currently working on a kitchen makeover project. My client’s kitchen is basically sound, a good layout for working in, with plenty of storage, which my client uses to full capacity!  The kitchen was originally installed about twenty years ago and consisted of solid oak fronted cupboards and drawer fronts (now fairly dis-coloured), beige/cream wall tiles punctuated randomly with with tiles with pictures on them of onions and saucepans and the like. The worktop was a marbled effect Formica, which had seen much service. The walls were covered with a thick heavy duty anaglypta paper. The flooring is newly laid vinyl in a beige cream tiled pattern. Once the floor had been laid, my client had decided that the rest of the kitchen needed doing.

My brief was to update the kitchen on a very tight budget, with minimum disruption.

The most cost effective and least disruptive solution agreed upon was to paint all the cupboard door and drawers  with an off white specialist cupboard paint, strip the walls of anaglypta paper and painted Farrow and Ball ‘Archive’  to avoid the kitchen looking too cold (the room faces North) and clinical. The tiled splash backs to be replaced with an off white brick style tile and replace the worktop.

The men arrived on site and work commenced. The oak cupboard doors, plinths, kick-boards and shelves were washed down with sugar soap to remove any grease and oil, sanded down thoroughly and the dust removed. The first coat of the specialist ‘one coat cupboard paint’ was applied to the front of one door as a tester. One could clearly see that one coat would certainly not be enough to achieve the desired finish, and a second coat would be required. As this first coat of paint dried, it began to ripple, resembling a distressed paint effect; great if this is what you wanted, but not in this case.

Two solutions were discussed to rectify the problem. Firstly as the cupboards are solid oak they could be given a ‘limed oak’ paint finish using an eggshell paint. This is achieved by painting the surface and then whilst the paint is still wet, wiping off the excess paint with a cloth, whist leaving some of the paint in the wood grain.

The second solution was to apply an oil based undercoat to all the cupboards and then paint a top coat using the ‘one coat’ paint. The undercoat acting as a seal to prevent further chemical reactions and ‘interesting paint effects’.

The latter solution was agreed upon by the client and the crinkled paint scrapped and sanded flat before re-applying the paint. This solution has worked.

TIP: It is probably a good idea to paint the inside of a cupboard door or in a discreet area first rather than somewhere more visible, just in case the paint doesn’t do what it says on the tin!

Unintentional 'Paint Effect'.
Unintentional ‘Paint Effect’.

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