Painting Interiors of Kitchen Drawers

bew19May 15, 2013

Hi,
I am renovating my kitchen and need to decide whether the interiors of the kitchen drawers should be painted . . . I'm told that the interiors of the kitchen cabinets will be painted, but that I should leave the drawers natural maple (because painted interiors of drawers will chip easily). In looking online, it seems that some people paint the inside of their drawers and others don't -- apparently Martha paints hers (photo attached)! Also, wouldn't painted cabinets chip/scuff just as much as painted drawers?

Any thoughts, considerations, etc would be much appreciated!!

Thank you!

Website for photos of Martha's drawers:
http://www.thekitchn.com/get-organized-a-peek-inside-ma-131206

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suzanne_sl

I'm thinking those drawers aren't painted, but the grey is actually metal. Alternatively, it could be a drawer liner. In some cabinet lines, the drawers can be ordered metal, although I would expect the bottom and sides to be the same color. Most drawers are wood possibly with a laminate or melamine finish. Whatever is on the inside, it's a durable finish meant for hard use. I think painting the insides would be less satisfactory and less sanitary than leaving them the way they come.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 10:20AM
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live_wire_oak

I'd bet that's melamine, not paint. All of her cabinetry for HD in colors is melamine wrapped. Or, if it's paint, it's a UV cured polyurethane based paint that consumers can't get their hands on.

I would NEVER paint the interior of any cabinets. Not any of it. It will dramatically decrease it's durability and your happiness with it's durability. Painting the exterior is enough of a chore to do correctly---and it's expense correleates directly with that amount of work. Average is 3-6K. I can't imagine what the cost would be to add the interiors. More than double that probably, because it's more than double the surface of just the exteriors, and it's harder to get to to prep properly.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 10:20AM
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bew19

Thank you for your speedy responses!! Ok, you are probably right that it is melamine or cured paint -- it would be done at the cabinet producing factory. But the cabinet would be white inside and drawers would be maple inside. To have the drawers also finished with white interiors would cost about $1200.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 10:33AM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance Zone 9b

If you are unhappy with your drawers, a light sanding will make the wood look happy! Hit each drawer with a leaf blower to get the saw dust out, then line the bottoms with a suitable lining, and they will be fresh as new!

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 10:49AM
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breezygirl

While I love the romantic idea of opening my drawers and seeing the lovely white paint that graces the exterior of my drawers, I can't imagine the maintenance. Every tiny scratch, nick, or scuff would drive me bonkers. The natural, but protectively coated, interior of my drawers is holding up flawlessly and always looks clean.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 11:24AM
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kiko

Our ugly oak cabinets were painted by the prior owner. They were sprayed inside cabinets and drawers too. I haven't noticed any chipping inside (I do have that ribbed drawer liner from Rubbermaid ... not sure if I needed it). I wouldn't be able to take the insides being a different color than the outside.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 11:49AM
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live_wire_oak

Standard interiors on 95% of all constructed cabinetry is a light maple look, either melamine or clear coated ply. Matching interiors is an upgrade, and doesn't include drawers except in some custom cabinets.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 11:52AM
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gpraceman55

Are your cabinet interiors wood or melamine? If melamine, I'd be concerned about paint adhesion.

As for the drawers, I'd leave them unpainted.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 12:46PM
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palimpsest

I think Martha also tends to line things with the thin plastic pad applied to the top of drafting tables, which is grey, ivory or pale green. And expensive.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 1:10PM
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brickeyee

If you use paint products available to non-professionals the drawers are going to stink forever from the solvents.

About the only homeowner thing you can use is shellac.

The solvent is plain old alcohol that is not irritating and does go away reasonably quickly.

I had a GF who used an oil polyurethane in dresser drawers once.

She finally threw the dresser out because all her clothes smelled like 'chemicals' to her (I new it was Stoddard solvent, AKA paint thinner).

This post was edited by brickeyee on Wed, May 15, 13 at 18:57

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 6:53PM
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Fori is not pleased

My last kitchen had white cabinets and the drawers were painted. No problems in the 3ish years I was there.

In my first kitchen I painted the insides of the drawers along with the outsides. Hey, they were avocado green and I wanted 'em clean. No problems with those either, but that was back when you could get GOOD paint.

I wouldn't do it if the insides are not gross. If they ARE gross, paint them.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 9:06PM
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ci_lantro

After the second week with your new cabinets, you're not going to notice how the inside is finished because the drawers are going to be full of stuff. And when you open them, you're going to be looking for something and definitely not focusing on the finish.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 10:03PM
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ermachef

I have new cabinets that are a beautiful medium maple color from a high end company and the interior of all of them are a lighter maple color and they look beautiful. I would not paint them and if they seem a little rough I would use the Rubbermaid liners as someone else suggested.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 10:34PM
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snookums2

You cannot use some of the better latex, or low VOC, paints to paint the interiors of a cabinet or dresser without permanent odor?

BM satin impervo waterborne
BM Advance waterborne
BM Aura
Fine Paints of Europe Eco Waterborne

Could you do a water based polyurethane inside? I don't like putting a coating like that on anything, really, just wondering if it ended up needing protection in the end.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2013 at 11:36PM
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bew19

The interiors are maple (photo attached). The factory would paint the drawer interiors -- so I'm not so concerned with the difficulty -- I believe they spray the paint on, just like the exterior of the cabinets.

I think I like how the interior of the drawers would match the interior of the cabinets, and the exteriors of both the drawers and the cabinets. But not sure if I'll regret it when I want to sell the house and the drawers show a bit of wear . . .

    Bookmark   May 16, 2013 at 9:37AM
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bew19

And then a photo of a painted drawer (my Mom's), which matches the painted exteriors of the cabinets as well as the interiors of the cabinets.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2013 at 9:46AM
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gpraceman55

I'd say save your money and put it towards other features of your kitchen, like more drawers, pullouts, etc. Of all of the kitchen displays that I had seen while looking for cabinets, not one had painted drawers.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2013 at 9:50AM
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Fori is not pleased

I like it inside your drawers!

There. I said it.

I would not mess with those.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2013 at 12:30PM
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breezygirl

I, too, like the look of your drawer interiors as natural wood. Looks like mine. I second the notion to save your money here and instead put it towards something functional for the kitchen. Better lighting? Under cab lighting? New Shun knives? Large wood cutting board? Vitamix? New batch of kitchen towels? More expensive bs tile? All of the above? $1200 is a LOT of money.

This post was edited by breezygirl on Thu, May 16, 13 at 13:31

    Bookmark   May 16, 2013 at 1:27PM
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breezygirl

Deleted for odd double post.

This post was edited by breezygirl on Thu, May 16, 13 at 13:29

    Bookmark   May 16, 2013 at 1:28PM
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