Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Reader Question: Painting a Vanity

First, I must say I am so excited about all the emails I've been getting with questions and comments. Thank you. While most of the time I just email the answer back, when I receive the same question several times – I've decided to post it as a reader question. So, keep the questions coming and have a great week!

Hi Ashley,
I am a fairly new reader to your blog but I had a question for you. My fiance and I are working on decorating our first house and we have plans to paint the vanity in our tiny master bathroom white. I noticed that you did the same thing in one of your bathrooms. I was wondering if you had any words of wisdom to help us.
I think the concept of painting, whether it's doors, cabinets or furniture seems scarier than it really is. My bathroom vanity project was my first cabinet-painting experience, and I was thrilled to discover it didn't stress me out as much as I expected. I have to admit though, even now, there's something about the words "paint" and "cabinets" that I just don't like in the same sentence. (This is also why I don't discuss my kitchen).

Anyway, back to cabinet fun. Here are my tips...
- Use semi-gloss or gloss (anything lower in the gloss-factor than that will not clean up easily and bad things will happen). I used semi-gloss and am really happy for it.

- Make sure to sand. I know it's not fun, but having a roughed-up finish will help the paint stick better. (This is definitely my least favorite part about painting, so Brent and I struck a deal – he does the sanding and clean up from sanding and I do the rest. Sure, my side is more work, but that just shows how my feelings about sanding).

- If you have flat cabinets, awesome, that will be easier for you. If not, paint the insets first with a small brush. Then move on to the rolling.

(A visual of painting the insets first, as well as a visual of what I'm currently working on – more doors, shocking, I know).

- My roller of choice for anything wood (cabinets, doors, furniture) are the small foam rollers. The foam makes the paint go on evenly without in bubbling.

- Once all the coats are done, be patient. If you're anything like me, you'll be super excited to put everything back in so you can admire your work. Try to wait 24 hours before putting things back in, this will help prevent objects sticking to the paint.

I hope that helps!


  1. Ashley,
    Great post. And, my hands are crippled at the moment due to all of your inspiration. haha! I have a few more coats to put on my kitchen hallway doors project & love the foam rollers too! Hope to have it totally finished next week. NG.

  2. Nati – You are kicking my butt in the door-painting department.