Give your old cabinets a fresh new face with these tips on how to update old cabinets with new doors, completely transforming the whole look! A big thank you to Fast Cabinet Doors for providing me with these amazing doors!
When we first moved in to this house a little over 2 years ago I had originally planned to completely rip out our breakfast room cabinets. However, when it came time to tackle this space and we looked closer at the cabinets. The base of the cabinets really weren’t in bad shape. They just needed the old contact paper removed, a good cleaning, and some sanding. Rather than rip everything out we opted to Update Old Cabinets with New Doors. You can see the full before and after of this space here.
One of the main issues I had with these cabinets was how many doors there were. It was messy and not to mention just out of style. We also realized real quick that these cabinets were very obviously custom built and nothing about the sizing or design was “standard”. So when working with Fast Cabinet Doors to get this full overlay look and update old cabinets, there was some tweaking and extra careful measuring to get it pieced together. Fast Cabinet Doors is a great company to work with! They are super patient and really made sure we could achieve the look I envisioned!
Old Cabinets Before
I shared a lot of my thought process in IG stories, so you can definitely check out my highlights there. But let’s talk about the process.
How to Update Old Cabinets with New Doors
The very first thing I did was research. I knew this was a lot of cabinet space and I didn’t want it to feel weird being in the breakfast room. I scoured the internet and determine what I wanted in here. There were too many doors plain and simple, which led me to my decision to combine the top two doors into one tall door for a streamlined look. The of course we had our drawer fronts and the lower section of doors. Such a different by combining those two top doors though! It feels drastically cleaner in here from that change alone!
Here are the doors and drawer fronts I chose. They do however have a big selection of wood species if you are looking to stain your cabinets!
Sketch New Cabinet Layout
Once I decided on the look I was going for I drew up a sketch documenting all the measurements. I measured each opening, and all the face framing of these cabinets. The face frame is what I was referring to earlier when I said nothing was standard. Ours were extra wide and I didn’t want to see that. I was pretty set on a full overlay style. After talking with Fast Cabinet Doors we took that into account and most of the doors overlap the face frame more than typical on the side opposite the hinge. They were the real rockstars here! I just send them a whole bunch of numbers and they worked their magic! Below is a sketch I drew up. You can also hand draw this with a ruler.
Order New Cabinet Doors to Update Old Cabinets
Once we got all the numbers correct and I remeasured a million times to make sure everything was perfect my doors came! : ) Everything came perfectly packaged and ready to paint. I did run a sanding block over some of the edges just to make sure it was perfectly smooth, but overall it was super quick to get started painting!
Paint Cabinet Doors
Like I mentioned the doors came ready to paint so after letting them acclimate to the climate for a few days I took them down to our basement and started painting away. I’ve got a tutorial here for how I paint cabinets. It’s pretty straight forward. The one thing I changed was I didn’t use oil based primer with these cabinets or doors, mainly because they don’t see every day use. I talk about this in my tutorial, but I feel like I should stress it here too. Sand in between EVERY coat! It doesn’t take long, I just use a sanding block and it’s what helps you get that super smooth finish!
Hang New Cabinet Doors & Update Old Cabinets
Since I wasn’t just swapping out doors for a style change and had different dimensions and hinges this part took us some time, but just following the manufacturer’s instructions on the hinges (and Fast Cabinet Doors also offers some great video tutorials) we were able to get everything up pretty easy!
Add Hardware to Cabinet Doors
Once the doors are all hung, leveled, and in place it’s time for the hardware! I love this part because it’s when my vision comes to life! I went with these handles and these knobs and I couldn’t be happier with the overall look! If you’re looking for some advice on installing hardware like a pro, I wrote a post on that a few years ago. I did start using this cabinet jig though and it’s pure awesome!
Now all that’s left is to enjoy your brand new cabinet doors! Door styles make such a difference and Fast Cabinet Doors offers something for every style! So now you are ready to update old cabinets in your home and give your space a breath of fresh air!