DIY Projects Home Organization

How to Update Cabinet Hardware

We are a couple of weeks into making the new house feel like home and I have so many projects to share with you! The first is part one of the kitchen update. Our house is fairly new, built in 2003, but the kitchen had some pretty cheap cabinets and hardware that made it look more like an early nineties build. New cabinets were definitely not in a first-time home buyers’ budget, so I decided to get creative. I was a bit apprehensive to attempt repainting cabinets and hardware but after a little reassurance from my DIY Pro brother, Mark, I was ready to take on the task.

Kitchen Before
Here’s the first look of the kitchen. Not bad, but not so good either. The gold hardware and dull, dirty cabinets really aged the room.
Remove Cabinet Doors
I started by removing the cabinet hinges with a drill. This went by super quickly and was a lot easier than I expected. I labeled each cabinet with a number for easy re-installation.
Label Doors
I labeled each door also so I would know which one went with each cabinet. After they were labeled, I cleaned and sanded all the cabinets and doors. They were pretty nasty, obviously.
Cook rusty painted hinges in crock pot to restore
All the hinges and screws went into a crockpot and cooked on low for 12 hours. I put mine in at night and they were ready in the morning. Then, while wearing rubber gloves, I removed them with tongs (careful…these guys are really really hot) and scrubbed them with a toothbrush. The old paint and rust just fell right off.
Prepare for painting
I laid the hinges out to dry on a towel and stuck the screws in a piece of foam for easy painting. I left them alone for 6 hours to ensure all the tiny crevices were completely dry. Then I gave them a couple of coats of matte black rust inhibiting spray paint. I also gave the cabinets a fresh coat of glossy white paint.
painted hinges
After the paint dried for 24 hours, I re-installed the hinges to the doors, then the doors to the cabinets. Since I didn’t buy new hinges, I didn’t have to drill new holes. And I didn’t have to spend $160 on new hardware.
Freshly Painted Cabinets and hinges
The clean glossy paint on the doors, the black hinges, and a new set of handles really made this kitchen come back to life.

Before and After

 I am so impressed with how this small amount of work made such a huge impact on the room. Of course, I would have much rather had new cabinets installed with fancy soft-close hinges. But this is reality, not my dreams. Either way, I love the kitchen, brand new or not.

Stay tuned for part two of the kitchen update where I reveal the rest of the room and a very unexpected product that will make you think twice about shelling out big bucks when remodeling. There’s your teaser. Come back soon!

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  1. Every single one of my cabinets were a different size by a fraction of an inch. If I hadn’t labeled them, I’d be playing the door puzzle game for hours. Thanks for your comment!

  2. I never thought about putting hardware in a crock pot to get the paint off. Thanks for the ideas, your cabinets came out great!

  3. Hey Lela! I’ve been using my crockpot all wrong- I had no idea it could help me spruce up my 1940’s kitchen! (I wish I was exaggerating) Thanks for linking up- I always love checking out your latest and greatest!
    Xoxo K

    • Oh yes, the crock pot worked like a charm. The paint and rust literally fell right off. And I may be a little weird, but I happen to love 40’s and 50’s style kitchens. Thanks for hosting today! A great party, as always.

  4. they look great!

  5. I would never think to label the cabinets, smart trick!

    • Every single one of my cabinets were a different size by a fraction of an inch. If I hadn’t labeled them, I’d be playing the door puzzle game for hours. Thanks for your comment!

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