Why Unfinished Cabinets?

Unfinished cabinets are seen by some as bland, boring, and basic. But that couldn’t be farther from the truth! We have been selling unfinished kitchen cabinets since we opened almost 10 years ago, and it still remains one of our top sellers. Why? They offer all wood construction, something that many lines of custom cabinets don’t have, dovetail drawers, and a classic shaker style cabinet door. Unfinished cabinets are incredibly affordable, making them an incredible choice for a kitchen remodel in Louisville, Cincinnati, or Newport. We also carry Unfinished cabinets for bathroom vanities, which is a way to save on a bathroom remodel as well.
cabinets hundereds

How To Make Unfinished Cabinets Your Own

Unfinished cabinets are like a blank slate. If you can dream it for your kitchen cabinets, you can do it. The easiest way to upgrade your unfinished kitchen cabinets is to paint or stain them. They take both incredibly well, and it is a project that you can easily do yourself!
With unfinished cabinets, the choices are endless. You can start with going to your local hardware or paint store and deciding if you want a paint or a stain. A great first step is to do some web surfing. Go on Pinterest or Houzz and look for painted or stained kitchen or bathroom cabinets. Start saving them to your boards or ideabooks. This is a great way to see what catches your eye first. If you take 30 minutes to do this, go back and look at your board. Which color have you saved over and over again? This is how I decided on my kitchen cabinet color when I purchased unfinished cabinets. I liked a variety of styles, but I quickly knew that painted was for me. White was one that I really liked, but I kept coming back over and over again to aqua colored kitchen cabinets. After getting my husband to agree, with much difficulty, we went on the hunt for the perfect shade. You’ll quickly see where your tastes lie and that gives you a great starting point for your search.
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Buy samples, many samples.

When you decide on your shade, don’t just buy a few gallons of pricey paint as soon as you walk in the door. What looks good in the can doesnt always look good on your cabinets. This is because there are many different wood species and stain especially will react to them differently. For example, when I first decided on my aqua cabinets, I loved the image above the very best. While these doors aren’t straight shaker style, they are very similar, so I knew it would look good. I was going for butcher block countertops which is similar to their countertop shade. But what I wanted to imitate was the grain showing through. This prompted me to look for a colored stain. I went to Sherwin Williams and found an interior stain in what I thought was the exact color I wanted, but no. The wood species had a red tint, especially when stained, so the color looked pretty awful. I then opted for a paint. I definitely suggest you buy the little $4-$6 containers and test them. You’ll be glad you did.

aqua kitchen cabinet on unfinished cabinets

The kitchen that inspired my design

How to paint your unfinished cabinets

Painting cabinets is easier than you might think. They key to painting is prepping. If you’re not the most experienced painter, I would recommend taping anything you don’t want to touch. I bough three brush sizes, as you’ll need to get into the areas on the inside of the door frame which can be difficult with a larger brush. Luckily, when I was painting my cabinets, my flooring wasn’t in yet, but if yours is, I’d suggest putting a drop cloth down as well. The inside frames, shown below, are definitely good to pain to give your cabinet a more finished look. You can paint the inside of your doors as well, but I left mine natural.
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If you have a paint sprayer, and haven’t installed your cabinets yet, this is an easier way to paint them. You need to make sure you’re in a well ventilated area and you tape and cover anything that you don’t want to be cabinet colored.

An Unfinished Cabinet Owners Review

I desperately needed to remodel my kitchen, but I was on as limited budget. Custom or special order cabinets were completely out of the question. The in stock selection I looked at just didn’t have the pizazz I needed to make my house feel like a home. Unfinished cabinets seemed like a perfect opportunity for me to put my own spin on something, while remaining within budget. I was able to install them easily with my husband, and painted them on my own. When I say on my own, I really mean I bribed a friend with wine to help me paint. She actually had zero painting experience, but was able to do it with no problem! I added a coat of polyurethane to mine to protect it from water and moisture, but I don’t think thats 100% necessary. If you’re not experienced using polyurethane, I would say either learn, or outsource the job. Either way the result will be beautiful! While my kitchen is STILL not finished, my cabinets are looking great! See them below!
Considering unfinished cabinets? Check them out in store at Builders Surplus in Louisville or Newport, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio!

Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We are the leading provider of Ledge Stone, wall tile and backsplash tile in Louisville, Newport, and Cincinnati. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, bathroom remodel, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation!

Written By: Allie Bloyd