And these are all oak kitchens!
Minimize the Grain
Minimize the Grain The biggest issue with painting oak cabinets is how to minimize the grain that comes with that type of wood. If you have maple or cherry cabinets, they paint up beautifully. Oak can have a similar result, it just takes a little more effort to get there. Check out this post on ways to minimize the grain when painting oak cabinets. This aids in minimizing the wood grain of oak cabinets to a certain degree, but primarily helps to keep the grain from bleeding through your primer and paint.
Very key in giving your oak cabinets an update.
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With the next set of oak cabinets, I used the sanding sealer. It definitely helped with the grain — especially with the issue of the grain bleeding through, and eliminating the need for several coats of primer. If you are looking to try and eliminate the wood grain look altogether, I would suggest investing in the help of a professional.
There are wood grain filler and putty products out there that can be used for this purpose. Here is a photo showing the process used to fill the grain on a piece of oak — quite impressive! Another option to using the sanding sealer, is to go with a shellac primer like Zinsser BIN. Fair warning, it stinks to high heaven, but it dries quickly, seals in the oak grain, sands easily and gets the job done. And if you apply coats depending upon the graininess of your cabinetsit does a great job in filling the grain to a large degree.
There are two main reasons for this: You truly get a professional, factory finish with a spray gun, with a lot of control using an HVLP gunno brush marks! My cabinet frames have raised panels, and I wanted the same factory finished look that I had with my cabinet doors and drawers.
I still recommend spraying the doors and drawers, because the finished look is second to none, but there is some flexibility on the frames. Plus, it saves you the hassle of having to tape off your kitchen to avoid overspray. If you choose to do your frames by hand, here is another tip for getting the best finish.