• Mark Strong

Project: I ran out of excuses


Kitchen: Dark brown cabinets on top with a white subway tile backsplash and white appliances

When I moved into my place 3 years ago, I almost immediately removed two sets of bent closet doors that were that dark brown wood pattern that was all the rage for so long. That left two major things with this dated pattern: the warped doors and the kitchen cabinets. The color and condition of these have been an eyesore since I replaced the flooring and trim two summers ago.



A 3-layer metal shelf holds painted panels for drying

Part of what took me so long to get to it was that my own inexperienced planning over-estimated the scope of the project. I had primer and paint lying around, had recently caught some cabinet knobs on sale for 20 cents each, but I thought I needed a palm sander. Plus, I need the kitchen several times a day and didn't want to navigate wet paint. My balcony is small; where would I paint and dry these things?


Then, the July 4th weekend happened: four days off from work, warm weather and sunlight til 10pm. It was too bright outside to want to watch TV and play games all day. Time wasn't an excuse anymore. The SKTL, of course, had the palm sander. More importantly, though, is the SKTL Consumables section. I've gotten new power outlet covers, screws and hooks, which saved a few bucks and I only took what I needed instead of committing to a new container of these things. This time around, there were some paint rollers that were a better quality than I would have bought. I had everything in place to redo these cabinets.



One thing I realized with DIY projects is that, even with the inevitable mistakes and bad cuts and measuring, a completed project always looks better than I imagine. Quitting or going back to redo a mistake over and over leads to more frustration for me. All-in-all, the long weekend, SKTL consumables and weather all obliterated my excuses and pushed me to update my home. My wife and I still may replace the cabinets (with ones that close the darn gap to the ceiling), but we gained some useful experience together with a new look and only shelled out a few bucks for some knobs. That just leaves the outdated, swollen doors as the last remnant of the home's old history. I'm coming for them NEXT.


Finished kitchen: all-white cabinets with white appliances. The spice racks are off-level from one another.
Not a WORD about my spice racks...

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