Creative Mistress

Corporate by day, crafter by night. I am a self-proclaimed Creative Mistress. I often find myself on the clock, daydreaming about what project I will tackle next.

I married young and supported my husband through law school, all while birthing our two beautiful daughters – needless to say, we were on a TIGHT budget. I had to find creative ways to keep a nice home, throw memorable parties and fulfill my desire to constantly change my esthetic surroundings. My family often jokes that we lost square footage because I re-painted so often.


Giani Kitchen Makeover

After YEARS of watching way too much HGTV, and LOTS of persuasion, I was finally able to get my husband on board for a small-scale kitchen makeover. Our house was built in 2004, so things were looking a bit outdated, and needed a fresh look. I knew I wanted white cabinets and couldn’t stand my ugly builder grade, peach counter tops – so they both had to go! I set out to research different counter and cabinet options for cost, quality and longevity –

  • Rustoleum (cabinet & counter top) — mixed reviews
  • Giani (cabinet & counter top) — sounded too good to be true!
  • Concrete (counter top) — too expensive

I decided to go with Giani cabinet kit (coconut espresso), and Giani counter top kit (silicon sand). I purchased two kits of each, just to be safe. I purchased the counter top kits at Home Depot and the cabinet kits on Amazon. I LOVE amazon!

Because our cabinets were a horrible orange grain wood, and the hardware gold, to match its awfulness, it too had to go. I found reasonably priced hinges, pulls and handles on Amazon in an oil rubbed bronze.

Cabinets –

  • Bring kids to Grandma’s!
  • Pour a cocktail – why not? the kids are gone!
  • Remove cabinet doors
  • Remove hardware
  • Wash cabinets & frames with Windex
  • Sand cabinets just enough to rough them up and remove build-up
  • Lay cabinets front side down on a protected surface
  • 2-3 coats on frames & back side of cabinets – also paint sides of cabinets (so that you can hang them up to paint the fronts)
  • Re-install cabinets
  • 3-4 coats on front side of cabinets
  • Re-install hardware

Notes/After thoughts –

  • I must remember that my husband is helpful, NOT handy.
  • The paint dries very quickly (so do drips) so be cautious when layering coats to avoid blemishes.
  • Keep a small container of paint in the kitchen for touch ups.
  • White cabinets show MUCH more than wood. Be prepared to clean, clean, clean!
  • If you plan to replace hinges, be sure to order the same mount (inside/outside) as those currently installed.
  • Purchase cabinet stops, they will help limit scratching when the cabinets open/close

Counter tops –

  • Scrub, scrub, scrub counter tops.
  • Rinse any┬ádebris
  • Tape off counters and around sink (be sure to have a good seal)
  • Before bed, paint on the black primer coat (must dry for 8 hours)
  • Layer on your three color, granite paint with provided sponge (must dry or 4 hours)
  • Sand any bumps or uneven surfaces
  • Apply poly coat 1 (must dry for 4 hours)
  • Apply poly coat 2 (must dry for 4 hours)
  • Use razor to remove tape
  • Seal edges, and around sink with clear, paintable caulk
  • Wala!!!!

Notes/After thoughts –

  • Corners are really hard to paint, I used a small paint brush to fill them in
  • Don’t apply too much paint to sides, it WILL run
  • Keep a little paint to touch up after you remove the tape
  • Walls may need to be touched up after counters are complete
  • Do not set appliances back on counters for a few days
  • Be cautious of any standing water on counters for a least a few weeks

Now that I finally have my new kitchen, it’s on to my next project!