The one thing that takes up the most visual real estate in a kitchen are the kitchen cabinet doors. The cabinet doors are a huge canvas to work with and if you want to give your kitchen a new look then one of the easiest things you can do is refinish you cabinet doors. There are several steps to the process but it is a project that you can do on your own without the aid of a contractor.
The first step is to remove all the cabinet doors from their hinges. It is very important that you include everything. Drawer fronts are something that people often miss. In addition, make sure you include kitchen islands. Sometimes, islands that house appliances rather than cabinets have facades on them that are made to look like cabinet doors. If possible, remove these too because you want everything to match as well as possible so it is important to refinish those facades in the same way that we refinish the rest of the cabinets.
The second step is to remove all the hardware from the cabinet doors and drawer fronts. The hardware will get in the way during the rest of the process and it is possible that you might want to change it as part of your refinishing project.
The next step is to strip the cabinet doors and the frames that are still hanging on the walls. You can use an electric sander, sand paper, or a chemical stripping agent. You want to get the old stain or paint off so that you have a clean surface to work with.
Then you will be ready to apply whatever new finish you are putting on the kitchen doors. Some people paint the cabinets, others use stain. You can also do something really creative and cut out the center of each door and fill in those holes with glass or Plexiglas. This open design is popular with more modern kitchens. Some kitchens do not have cabinet doors at all. The downside to having open cabinets is that you have to keep everything inside of them very organized and presentable.
Make sure to also refinish the cabinet frames so that they match the new doors. The frames usually take longer because they are small surfaces and you need to use smaller brushes and applicators. If you have elected to go with an open cabinet deign then you also want to consider painting or sprucing up the interior of each cabinet as well.
Finally, you reapply the hardware and hang the kitchen cabinet doors back up. With a few days worth of work, you can have a kitchen that looks completely different.