Help! Our painter ruined our new kitchen

mjoceanApril 29, 2013


This is my first time writing into the painting forum - I have been active on the kitchen and appliance forums.
Well, our painter ruined our beautiful natural cherry kitchen. We wanted the woodwork (trim and sliding doors) stained natural cherry to match the cabinets and he stained them walnut! We are not sure what he was thinking. This is a painter we have used in the past and have always been VERY pleased with his work. When we asked him if it could be bleached out and he said "not really".

I read an old post that suggested stain can be removed with stripping solvent, scraping and sanding. Is that the case? I would like to hear from folks who have done this successfully.

Thank you, I look forward to your responses.

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What did the contract or bid say?

If it said "cherry to match the cabinets", it's the painter's job to make it happen, not your job to fix it later at more expense.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2013 at 4:21PM
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Hi Lazygardens,

Our fault, no written contract, the first and last time we'll ever do that.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2013 at 4:24PM
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You might want to post this on the Woodworking forum.

Did he just apply the stain or did he also put a finish coat of something over the stain?

Any pictures to show what the color difference is between the cherry you wanted and the walnut you got?

    Bookmark   April 29, 2013 at 4:46PM
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You might be able to rub some thinner on the stained surfaces to pull out some of the color and then stain with the correct color, but this is a long shot. If there is any finish on the trim, then it needs to be stripped or sanded down to raw wood, and with the labor time involved in something like that, you may want to consider just replacing the trim to see which route would be more cost effective.

Also, just because there was no contract doesn't always mean the painter has no obligation to fix something he screwed up. If he's an honorable guy and this is clearly his fault, then he should fix it for free or have his reputation damaged.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2013 at 11:19PM
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He applied polyurathane (sp) after staining. Will follow with photos. Thanks for the suggestion about the woodworking forum.
Paintguy - I agree the trim could be replaced, however he also stained our glass sliding doors.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2013 at 9:21AM
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No suggestions to add to those already posted. Wonder why any rational individual would think that a homeowner would choose Cherry wood and then want it stained Walnut?

    Bookmark   April 30, 2013 at 3:33PM
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Wow. He needs to replace the damage, I'm sorry to say. It doesn't matter whether there was a written contract or not. Does he deny your verbal contract of Cherry or something? It's a shame he messed up and a difficult situation but that is an awful lot of damage for you to simply accept. What does he have to say about it? He hasn't offered to fix or replace on his own?

I'm also surprised he didn't test and show you samples first so you could see how it would turn out, for approval.

He will learn to pay more attention next time. That's part of being in business.

This post was edited by snookums2 on Tue, Apr 30, 13 at 18:34

    Bookmark   April 30, 2013 at 6:33PM
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Christopher Nelson Wallcovering and Painting

That's part of being in business.

He probably is not qualified to be in business in the first place and certainly will not last long.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2013 at 4:24AM
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to add to what snookums said - he should have shown you a small piece stained to be sure it was the color you were expecting it to be - obviously he would have seen the difference in the color and should have stopped and consulted you. I don't have any input on fixing it - I think I would lean more toward replacing it - what part of the glass sliding doors is stained?

    Bookmark   May 3, 2013 at 8:54PM
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The wood that surrounds the glass.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 8:27AM
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Hmmm...I'm sure I have but I don't recall seeing wood trim around glass sliding doors. It's been a week since your original post - has anything been done/decided on?

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 9:31AM
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