Changing my kitchen cabinets from ‘oak’ to white – Was it worth it?

Our kitchen is white! Ok, I’ll admit – It’s not much of a revamp, apart from the colour. Everything else is pretty much the same, and a work in progress, as we’re going to change some of the furniture and flooring too…

But so far the colour change makes all the difference. I spoke about this in my Instagram stories not too long ago, mentioning that I had changed the colour of our cabinets but I wasn’t ready/willing to do a full review of the product I used. I think when it comes to certain DIY projects, It’s a good idea to wait a while to see if it was actually worth it. Kitchens are such an important part of the home, and I didn’t want to recommend a particular product or method without having the certitude that it was fit for purpose. Even with the little bit of influence I have on my platforms, I’d like to have a more responsible approach to the way I recommend brands and products.

But one one month on, I can honestly say I don’t have any regrets. I wanted an affordable, non-permanent quick way of transforming my kitchen. So keep reading to find out which method I chose, and please note, this is more of a review, than a step-by-step guide.

BEFORE:

AFTER:

The product

I bought a bunch of white gloss D-C-Fix adhesive vynil/contact paper/film from B&Q some time ago, and I just kept it there for weeks, not knowing if I really wanted to use it. Now, I know what you’re thinking. If you know this brand, you’ll know this is the popular, affordable choice for quick DIYs around the house. You wouldn’t think people actually used it for bigger projects such as covering kitchen cupboards, right? Well. I knew the brand very well, as I had used it on several projects before. And at the time, I hadn’t even thought of using any other brands. I thought to myself – it’s on the B&Q website, surely it must be reliable, strong and durable, even for kitchen cabinets.

Since then, however, I’ve discovered that there are other much more expensive and better quality brands of adhesive stick and peel vinyl paper. Had I shopped around a bit more, I probably would have invested in something more expensive. But here I was, with about 7 rolls of perfectly new white gloss adhesive paper I was determined to utilise, trusting that B&Q wouldn’t sell poor quality adhesive. And guys, the verdict… I was (and still am) pleasantly surprised!


The work:

First of all, it was quite easy to stick. The entire project took me 3-4 evenings to complete, and I used just under 7 rolls in total. I apologise for the lack of step-by-step photos – I know that’s not like me. I completed this project in the evenings after long, tiring working days, usually exhausted. Most days I didn’t have the energy to get my camera and start filming/photographing the process. I suggest watching Youtube tutorials – there are quite a few. You just need a lot of patience and attention to detail. You will struggle to flatten the odd bubble, at times, but overall, it’s honestly not that hard.

Maintenance

Food stains can be wiped off easily BUT you mustn’t wait. You have to wipe straight away, ideally using a soft cloth (and for stubborn stains, a tiny amount of bleach if your vinyl is white). I repeat, do it immediately. Do not wait.

Would I recommend it?

  • If you’re looking for an affordable, non-permanent and relatively easy to way to revamp your kitchen, absolutely, I would recommend using adhesive vinyl. But don’t do what I did – please shop around, order samples if possible and consider different brands. D-C-Fix was surprisingly good, but I’m sure a bigger budget would open the door for more choice. Please note: you have to be prepared to deal with the slight imperfections that are inevitable when working with contact paper.
  • If you want a more permanent solution, and a wider choice of colours, then I’d suggest painting your kitchen cabinets. But with painting, be prepared to put in the work! It is not an easy process at all. I’d recommend watching this video, by DIYer/Youtuber Rachel Metz. She takes you through each step (and even she gets frustrated with it all!) I did consider it, but in the end I just wasn’t ready to deal with the process, and the idea of it being such a permanent, non-reversible option!
  • If you’re rich, or recently won the lottery, then buy a whole new set of kitchen cabinets or get them custom made. Probably the best solution there is!

Whatever you decide to do, make your decision wisely, and let it be an informed one. Watch reviews or tutorials, shop around… A kitchen revamp is very attainable, and can be easy to achieve. But you just have to go with what you feel is best for your kitchen.

As I said there are still a few things around my kitchen that need doing: We’re still shopping around for a cooker hood and trying to find a trusted professional to install it – long overdue. I’d like to change the flooring – actually, the flooring around the house needs to be changed but that’s a story for another day. And I’d like a new dining table too.

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