The Golden Oak House of Horror.

Scary isn't it?

Well maybe not for some but for me, yes. The house was full of oak because it was built in 1992 which was a very popular year for that sort of decor. Well fast forward to 2009 when we bought and I wasn't having any of it. No way. No how. I am especially proud of my kitchen redo because it only cost me $300! Here is a few before pictures from when we moved in. Don't mind the hot photo of my friend J. He's single ladies!!

So here you can see the country blue colour and shiny golden oak. Nasty. Well I had to do something so I started looking into several products that were easy to use. I really had the fire lit under me when I found out I was pregnant. I knew that if I didn't do this before the baby was born, there's no way I would be able to do it after. Boy was I right. So I found a product called SAMAN. It is a seal, stain and varnish all in one!! I talked to my favourite people at the Benjamin Moore store and they said that this product was designed for simply that! Cupboards! So before I committed to the kitchen, I did a test run in the colour "Coffee" on a golden oak coffee table I had lying around. Worked great! All I did was sand with 220 grit sand paper so that all the of the sheen and shine was gone. I then wiped with a clean dry cloth to remove all of the dust before applying the Saman product. For the kitchen cupboards I went with the colour "Espresso."

Next I started on my kitchen. I decided to do the first coat on the inside of a top cupboard above the fridge that we rarely used. It took 3 or 4 coats to get it the exact shade that I wanted. So I took my time.  I filled all the old hardware holes with wood filler and then I would do between 4 and 5 doors at a time ( depending on size). It usually took me about a day to do both sides 3 to 4 coats because I let each coat dry an hour in between. It was supposed to be 2 but after 1 it seemed fine. It was a very slow moving process to say the least. It took 10 days in total. Yuck I know. It definitely felt never ending. In total it took one big sized container and about 2 doors into the next can. Roughly about $35!! So cheap for such a huge impact! The paint colour on the wall is Gray Owl from Benjamin Moore. Here is a progress photo with the kitchen half done.

Big difference right?!?
So after all was said and done I picked out my new hardware! I went with IKEA because you definitely get the most bang for your buck. I chose the style LANSA which came in different lengths. So I figured out how many I would need and in which length. I thought it would be different to have the handle go all the way up the length of the cabinet and I really like how it turned out. All the hardware cost $265.

There you have it! A $300, huge impact renovation! I am very proud of it. As you can also see in the after image that we added a small white island in the center. We needed better pots and pans storage and it has worked great. Please also note the beautiful concrete countertop that my hubby ever-so-nicely made for us!  It has been finished for 2 years and there are definitely wear and tear areas like the cabinet where our garbage can is. It gets beat up. I just need the time to touch it up again. Here's the pic of the cabinet after 2 years of wear and tear (with a child lock on it as well).

As you can see, the old stain shows through again. This cupboard really bugs me. Maybe I'll get a minute to redo it now that I can't stop thinking about it! Do you have any ugly oak you would like to redo?  What's style of decor is your least favourite? I am always interested in people's personal style.