Paint Rant, Round 2

I promise that the day will come when you will show up here and find the usual happy, positive Kristi rambling on about how much she loves DIY and loves her kitchen and loves the process, blah, blah, blah.  I’ll do everything in my power to try to make that happen tomorrow.  In fact, even if everything goes sideways today, I’ll still slap a smile on my face and fake it tomorrow.  I promise.

But today?  Well, sorry, but today is not that day.  Today you get frustrated, angry, ready-to-throw-in-the-towel, exhausted, ready-to-cry, so-sick-of-this-stupid-kitchen, hating-everything-to-do-with-paint Kristi.  Today, I rant.

So after my paint/clear coat issues this weekend, I backed up and reassessed.  Again, I wanted to use a latex paint on my cabinets.  Yes, oil-based paint is my favorite.  But in this kitchen — a kitchen that will be used much more than our last kitchen by my wheelchair-bound husband with poor muscle control and “bull in a china cabinet” syndrome — I don’t want to deal with something that will yellow over time and that is impossible to touch up when you get scratches and chips.  I want something that can easily be touched up when his metal foot pedals scrape against the cabinet doors.

After much consideration, I finally decided that I would just go with Sherwin Williams ProClassic Interior Waterbased Acrylic-Alkyd Enamel.  After all, many of you have raved about how great this product is, and I figured since the color I chose (Derbyshire) is a Sherwin Williams color anyway, I may as well go with it.

So off to Sherwin Williams I went, excited to have finally made my choice.  I asked the man at the counter if he could mix up the color I wanted in a satin finish ProClassic water-based enamel, and he told me it’ll be no problem.  But first he asked me about what I’m painting, what I’m using to prime the cabinets, and how I’ll be painting.

I told him that I was spraying the doors, and he asked me what kind of sprayer.  HPLV?  Gravity sprayer?  I didn’t know what mine was called, so I described it to him.  He asked if it hooks up to an air compressor, and I said yes.  Then he said, “You can’t spray latex paint with that.”  I said, “Ummm…why not?”  He said, “Well, it just won’t work.  Those won’t spray latex paint.”

I found that to be interesting since that’s pretty much the only thing I use my sprayer for, and it sprays latex paints beautifully.  I assured him it would work, and he assured me it wouldn’t.  Or shouldn’t.

*Sigh*  Frustration.

So after that exchange, I waited while he went off to mix my paint.

About two minutes later he came back with the bad news.  They can’t mix Derbyshire in a satin finish ProClassic because it doesn’t come in a deep base required to mix such a dark color.  But he had another paint that he could mix it in.

I didn’t want another paint.  I wanted ProClassic.  That’s specifically what I went there for.  But I reluctantly agreed to the other paint.

While I was waiting, the man in line behind me asked, “Why are you painting kitchen cabinets with latex paint?  You know that oil-based paint is much better for kitchen cabinets, right?”

I wanted to yell, “ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?!” but I didn’t.  Instead I just smiled and said, “Well, I do know, and oil-based paint is actually my favorite for kitchen cabinets, but I really don’t want to have to deal with the yellowing and the impossible touchups if it ever scratches or chips.”

We continued our conversation, and by the time the Sherwin Williams man located the correct base in the non-ProClassic paint he had talked me into, I had changed my mind once again.  The man in line behind me had me doubting my decision, and wanting to use oil-based paint.

So I asked the Sherwin Williams man about oil-based options.  He went on to explain to me that “the problem” with an oil-based paint is that he would have to give me an interior/exterior oil-based paint, and he would have to color match (!!) the color that I want, but their computer can’t read the yellow that’s in that green, so the color would be off.

Imagine me with a dumbfounded look on my face as I’m listening to this Sherwin Williams man tell me that he would have to color match a Sherwin Williams color from a Sherwin Williams paint card in order to give me the Sherwin Williams color that I picked out in the Sherwin Williams paint that I want, but their computer system won’t be able to match it correctly because it can’t read the yellow in the paint color, so I actually wouldn’t end up with the Sherwin Williams color that I wanted because evidently that’s not possible.

I felt like my head was about to explode.  How is it that Kelly Moore has this Sherwin Williams color in their system and can mix it in any paint you want, and Home Depot has this Sherwin Williams color in their system and can mix it in any paint you want, and Benjamin Moore has this Sherwin Williams color in their system and can mix it in any paint you want….

but Sherwin Williams can’t even mix their own freaking color in the paint I want because they can’t color match it?!?!

I finally just asked for the paint card and left.  I sat there in my car, ready to pull out of the parking lot, but had no idea where to go.  To the left was Kelly Moore.  I hate their latex paint, but their oil-based paint is my favorite.  But I didn’t want oil-based paint.  Also to the left was Home Depot, home of Behr’s Alkyd Semi-Gloss Enamel.  It has great ratings, but the Home Depot in my area doesn’t carry this product for some reason.  Plus, I didn’t want semi-gloss paint.  And to the right was Benjamin Moore, home of Advance Waterborne Alkyd, which also has great reviews.

I went right, and ended up at Benjamin Moore.  I walked in with my paint color, and within five minutes, the man had my Sherwin Williams Derbyshire paint color mixed in a gallon satin Advance paint.  No color matching necessary…they had the formula in their system.

So I headed home with my new gallon of paint and renewed hope and energy to tackle this project head on.

First, I sanded everything down, and then I sprayed the doors.  Let me just say that Benjamin Moore Advance paint sprays beautifully.  I mean, I couldn’t be happier with the doors.

But the rest?  The parts that I painted with a brush?  Well, those look like absolute crap.  And once again, it’s super shiny.  And yes, the top part is dry in this picture.

painting unfinished oak kitchen cabinets 8

The doors…perfect…

painting unfinished oak kitchen cabinets 9

The hand-painted parts…horrible…

painting unfinished oak kitchen cabinets 10


painting unfinished oak kitchen cabinets 11

Hand-painted parts…super shiny and streaky…

painting unfinished oak kitchen cabinets 12

I want to scream!!!

painting unfinished oak kitchen cabinets 13

I’ve been told by so many people that both Sherwin Williams ProClassic and Benjamin Moore Advance paints are just as good as oil-based paints, and they go on just like oil-based paints.

No.  No they don’t.  Not in the least.  It makes me wonder if people who say that have ever actually used oil-based paint, or if they’re just repeating what the commercials and sales people tell them.

One of the major problems with this paint is that it dries so unbelievably fast.  So I would paint part of the crown moulding and top header, and by the time I can get down from the ladder, move the ladder over, climb back up, and paint the next section, the first section has already started to dry and has become sticky.  So as soon as my brush hits that area, it drags and leaves drag marks in the paint.

Oil-based paint would never do that!  It’s funny because one of the major complaints that people have about oil-based paint, besides the smell and the headache of cleaning it up, is the slow dry time.  But that slow dry time is actually the very reason that things painted with oil look so much better and don’t have brush strokes.

Had I known that this would dry so fast, I would have added lots of Floetrol to it.  But I was assured that with both ProClassic and Advance, Floetrol isn’t needed.

Yes, it is.

I’m not buying any more paint.  I’m done buying paint.  My only option at this point is to spray everything.  But first I have to sand.  Again.  And then I have to spend hours and hours doing precision taping, papering, and draping everything with plastic.

I know in the end, I’ll probably be very happy that I was forced to spray everything.  But right now, I’m just having a  hard time seeing the positive side of this situation.

But it will work out, and it will be beautiful in the end.  I won’t stop until it is.

*end rant

*slapping on fake smile in hopes that it’ll become real between now and tomorrow morning*






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  1. On the bright side…… That color is gorgeous and the satin finish is beautiful!! I’m sorry for your frustrations and the experience with the clerk. As you know, sometimes they think they know better than you.

    1. I love reading your posts but must add that I do not know or do any of these things. Am wondering if the lighting has something to do with the final look. Just a thought, would dimmer light give the appearance you want?? I apologize if this is out in left field. Take care and spend a day outside with wine and book.

  2. Kristi,

    I am so sorry you are having all these nightmares with paint. I prefer oil over latex, and my go to brand always WAS Sherman Williams…that is until I built a wall to hang double french doors and had all the fancy crown, chair rail and doors (as well as replacement of all casings of the windows) to paint and after a debacle at Sherman Williams, went over and bought Advance. I now love Advance and won’t go back to oil based again.

    I do know that indoor temperature does play into how fast it dries, and when I did my painting of the entire room, it was at the end of winter, so my dry time was not faster then my painting speed because my indoor air was not humid or too warm. Maybe that is what caused your paint to dry so much faster?? I did not spray any of the trim or the doors, it did it all with a brush and mini roller and 99% of my work is brush streak free ( a few areas I was a bit sloppy and didn’t realize it). The areas that are not perfect, are not noticeable at all, but then again, I used standard white paint.

    Good luck. Here’s to hoping you can find some inner zen 🙂

  3. I’m so amazed at you. I’d be sitting in the middle of the floor in a puddle of my own tears by now. We painted a ceiling last year and my hubby isn’t so neat so I had to tape everything off and it looked like we were walking into a hazmat zone when I finished covering everything. The problem was that the air got stale and stuffy in there. Hope you wear something so you’re not inhaling paint for hours. Wish I could help you tape it all off – I’m a stickler for perfect lines!

  4. I think in the end you are going to be happy that you had to spray everything. It’s going to be a big ole pain right now, but just look at how gorgeous that door is! Everything will be that beautiful when you are done.

  5. This is a bummer. I hate when a clerk tries to tell me that he/she knows better than I, when it involves my job! Also I wonder if this clerk knew what he was talking about with the paint formula. I would bet that if you went in again and spoke to a different person they could do exactly what you want. Anyhoo, I think you will be happiest with spraying once it is done. I know that right now you are cursing the process but you will love it when it is done right. Wish I could be there to help you! But I have to go to work. LOL Good luck!

  6. well shucks… 🙁 at least you know how to get the look you want. :/ you just have to work extra hard to get it… 3rd time’s a charm? :p On the upside- the color itself is absolutely gorgeous and just what I thought it was going to be. 😀

  7. Kristi,
    Heck, don’t feel you have t “put on a happy face” for us! You are frustrated and you have every right to be. This isn’t an issue of you being picky ad particular, it’s an issue of products not working as they are advertised.
    Why do you think the sprayed part is satin and the brushed is glossy? Air in the paint or what? I cn understand the brush strokes but not the difference in the finish.
    I’m waiting to she how this goes before I begin to tackle my kitchen cabinets. They have a yellow finish that I think used to be clear right over the wood. And no handles. I’ve never understood why because the corners are always filthy from every time you open the door. Not sure yet what color- but the Derbyshire would look great with the scattered ivy patterned tiles that I’m not brave enough remove.
    In any case, you’re doing great- breathe and don’t worry about pretending that everything is okay when it’s not.

  8. Sorry, but all of this would have been a non-issue is you’d have just put the hours into covering everything off to spray in the first place. Now all the time you’ve spent trying to redo stuff is prob more than if you’d just covered up to begin with. On the bright side, Derbyshire was most def the right color choice.

    1. That…was pretty rude of you.

      And it is quite difficult to cover everything perfectly to avoid paint splatter, as I know from experience–and it would be heartbreaking if that bright green got on her beautiful new floors or counters, yes? So if one can avoid it with a little hand-painting, I would have done that first too. It is not Kristi’s fault that the paint has reacted so oddly.

      I *will* agree with you that the color is excellent.

    2. Well, that was helpful. I have a few home renovating projects on the horizon…might I borrow your crystal ball?

    3. Really Jess, way to pour salt into Kristi’s wounds. She did not deserve that snarky bit of recrimination from you. Not helpful at all. She had reason to trust that a paint that says “Satin” would be satin whether she brushed it or sprayed it. Do you do this to people you know IRL? Trust me, they see you coming.

    4. Really Jess, you have been through all of this with Kristi, right next to her tearing out walls rebuilding, hanging, taping ,sanding etc. So YOU have the right to get snarky and rude when Kristi is venting to her “FRIENDS AND FANS” ??? Really Jess crawl back under your rock, and stay ou t of business that you know nothing about…geeezzz some people!!!!

    5. Wow, rude much. You know, they do say those that live on glass houses should not throw stones, I would watch out for avalanches if I were you!


      You are doing a fabulous job, I enjoy reading your blog and while frustrating and upsetting, I’m sure in the end, sanding the cabinets down and repainting will be worth it. You will still be smiling at them in 10 years and all you accomplished to make you dream kitchen.

  9. Kristi,
    It will work out. Always remember that whenever you feel like it isn’t going to work, the answer is right around the corner. IT WILL WORK OUT!!!
    We have faith in you Kristi!

  10. Kristi,
    You are doing so well with pushing through this! I think I would be in a fit of tears myself and contemplating just scrapping it.
    Your color is beautiful. I agree with the person who said to focus on the pretty door. And look at your pretty light fixture. 🙂
    I’m cheering you on!

  11. Bless your heart, Kristi! I think you made the right decision to use latex paint, but yeah, the brushed part is just too shiny. Just a thought, though. I’m not sure this will work, but it might be worth a try. Can you lightly sand some of the brushed parts and topcoat with a satin finish poly? That *might* get rid of the shine without having to spray paint indoors, which I honestly can’t imagine even trying. I’m following your blog like my mom used to follow soap operas, lol. Good luck, if anyone can do this, I know you can!

    1. Sorry, when I said sand “part” of the brushed areas, I meant just so you could try this method and see what the results would be. Obviously, if it worked, you would go back and do it all.

  12. wow– think rainbows,,,and kittens,,,,and butterflies,,,,
    Anything but this,,,,it will pass, its sounds like an enormous PITA, but it WILL look great when sprayed on!
    We had the same problem with our front door,,,Salesman (talked us into) , one type of exterior paint, and is sucked. And that was from Sherwin Williams – We used their Exterior house paint – and fell in LOVE with the paint, everything they said about that REALLY expensive paint was true! But the stuff they TOLD us was better for doors and trim,,,NOT the case! The hard about painting a front door 8 different times?? Keeping the dog away from the OPEN front area!!! Yup EIGHT times with FOUR different types of brushes and SIX paints!
    I finally got my beautiful Red front door, but it seemed like it took forever to achieve!

    Was it worth the headache and wait?


    Your kitchen will be no different – when it is finished!
    Remember – RAINBOWS AND UNICORNS!!! 😀

  13. I love the color. So sorry for your horrible terrible no-good awful day. Chocolate surely helps. I have been tempted to paint my kitchen cabinets, but I would certainly go postal after an episode like this. Praying the spraying works.

  14. Wow…I wouldn’t be smiling now either. I’d be crying. Seriously, crying, ranting and screaming and probably using some bomb words I don’t normally use… Sorry, Kristi. I hope tomorrow truly is a better day for you.

  15. Hey..isn’t life a b*tch sometimes. You would think living in today’s world, things would be easier but it seems to be more complicated. Keep up your great work and thanks for being human (and sharing)

  16. Oh Kristi, I’m so sorry this has been a frustrating (and time consuming) situation for you! I do have faith that you’ll pull it off in the end, though. You always do!

    I’m also sorry you had such a bad experience at Sherwin Williams. I was BEYOND EXCITED when I discovered they have SW stores here in Argentina! The first paint we bought at another store was horrible. More like white wash than paint. Seriously! Not even kidding. Whenever I’d try to wipe off a smudge, my rag would turn white! The ‘paint’ just came right off. We had already painted most of the rental house with that nasty stuff and only had one room to go when we discovered the SW store. So the last room (which thankfully was the living room, and the one we used most) received SW paint and still looked good as new four years later when we moved.

    My husband built a metal cabinet to store our washer on the patio (so it wouldn’t disappear) and the paint he’d bought from the first store was worthless. Smeary no matter how careful or what brush he used (and he was in facilities maintenance so he’s a very adept painter). He bought a small can of SW paint and it went on like a dream and held up to the outdoor elements just fine.

    And then there’s the family house out in the country. Oh my word. The caretakers had it painted right before we moved here (none of the family had been in the country for a quarter of a century) and they chose an unfortunate gold that looked more like baby diaper poop because it also went on very smeary. It made my head hurt to go out there. I bought SW in a light aqua and it covered in one coat!

    Anyway, just to say I hope your SW experience was an isolated one!

  17. Hi, just a couple of thoughts come to mind as I read your post. Could you brush the fronts of the cabinets with the oil based paint that you like, either in the same color as the doors or a different coordinating color, maybe the cream in the floor? I am a painter by trade, and have amazing results with latex Diamond Vogel Nu-Cling, but i am sure you are done with referrals from others. Another thought I had is to buy an eggshell sheen for the cabinet fronts to solve the shiny problem, again either in the same color or a coordinating one. The dark color is going to show every stroke, but a lighter one will be more forgiving. Don’t give up, this is how we learn!

    1. One more thought, you might try a black foam roller on your flat areas so there will be no brush stokes. Will have to tape off the walls but easier than the whole room. Look forward to seeing a how you solve it, because we all know you are not a quitter!

      1. I completely agree with the eggshell and roller. I hate brush painted cabinets (no insult to those after that look) and prefer sprayed, yet if spraying isn’t an option, then a suede roller- foam makes bubbles.

        1. Roxann or Sheila can you give more info on the black or suede rollers? Is there a brand name and where do you buy these? As terrible as Kristi’s ordeal has been we are all learning alot from the informative posts and when she can get some distance from this experience she will kick up her expertise another notch…..and we will all benefit. Also anymore info on the Diamond Vogel Nu-cling paint? I imagine need to find a paint store that caters to professional painting trade and not the big box store or chains. I am learning so much about paint that I can’t keep it all clear.

          1. Hi Dee, the black foam rollers are mini, about 4″ and I have used them to paint paneled doors, and cabinet fronts and doors. I haven’t had a problem with the bubbles as Sheila commented about, but different brands of rollers may act different. I have gotten them at Home Depot or Lowes. As for the Nu-Cling you asked about, it is a paint for cabinets and any high use area, very durable and rolls and brushes on beautifully. It is sold at Diamond Vogel which is a paint store, as you said, and may not be in your area. Hope this helps.

  18. I have a friend just like you! It has to be perfect, or at least her version of perfect…….only difference is that she gets to brow beat her husband until he gets it right! I am sorry the paints aren’t working out for you. The wall cabinets do look gloss finished, and I don’t think the lights help to diminish it. My problem is that I don’t feel like the doors are finished. The color looks very different from the wall cabinets, and I do love the color of the door, but it looks flat to me. I can also see the grain in the wood. Maybe that is the way it is suppose to be, I am not too sure about anything anymore. I cannot begin to imagine the taping and plastic and covering in order to spray the cabinets. I will say this, if you are going to all that trouble, finish the wood work on all the cabinets first. I think you said you still had to put trim and feet on the island. That way you can spray it all at one time and your are finished with it. . I am going back to reread the steps that I am following for my kitchen. She did not seem to have any problems, but maybe that is because she didn’t tell anyone. That is the best part of your blog, we get to see all the wrong ways in addition to the right way. I am going to say something and I truly hope it does not offend you, and I want you to know it is not language I use but very much something that is said by the under 50 generations here in the Northeast. It means no disrespect, it is actually a way that they are being sympathetic to someones plight. So here goes from a mom of four adult kids who are probably all around your age, this is what they would say to you, if you were here……….Kristi, right now it sucks to be you. If you are not used to hearing it, it sounds vulgar and harsh, but it is not meant to be that way, they just say it! I will say some extra prayers for you today, to lower your blood pressure, and calm you down. You will get through this, there are much worse things in this world and I know you know this. You will find you happy self again (remember the joy of the countertops?). If you have to walk away for awhile, do it. Think about something else. Imagine wacking the guy at SW with a paint can…..that would me feel good, LOL. Find some good thoughts and hang on with your fingernails if you have to….this too shall pass. Blessings, darlin’

  19. I have a red hutch that I’ve been painting on and off for a couple of years now, mostly because it seems like no matter how many coats I put on it, it ends up streaky or shiny in some spots and perfect in other spots. I get frustrated after an hour and put it down then don’t want to go back to it. Of course, it’s red, which is notoriously difficult to coat evenly…I don’t care how much you tint the damned primer. I’m using Behr latex, which I love for walls, but it’s the newer one that’s low VOC (they replaced them all with low VOC a few years ago) and it dries almost too fast.

    Now, you have me wondering if I should just buy that mason jar paint sprayer (which I’ve been eyeing for years) and a bottle of floetrol, stick the thing in the backyard and get it all done. 🙂

  20. While I was reading about your experience in the store, I kept thinking someone would jump out and say, “Smile! You’re on Candid Camera!” After reading the whole post, I now feel the need to do about a half-hour of meditation. Take a deep breath and know this WILL work out eventually. And sometime, down the road, you will know it was all worth it. {{{Hugs}}}

  21. First a big hug!! That paint store story is surreal!!! The green in satin is gorgeous!! And I wish I lived closer because I would totally help you tape!! I kind of enjoy the process….

  22. Wow, we all need to vent, and fortunately you have followers as a sounding board. As we say in the south, “Bless your heart”! However, this is why you are so good at what you do, you sweat the small stuff. Hang in there, and you will have your dream kitchen eventually. Best of luck!

    1. Where I come from in the South East “Bless your heart” is not a nice thing to say. It is more of a mean-spirited insult than an expression of concern. Yes, I was surprised to learn this too. 😉

      1. Being a born and breed Southerner, I know the saying quite well. It’s all in how you say it. It can be a true sentiment, like when a friend brings you a glass of tea on a hot summer day while you are weeding the garden. Or…it can be drawn out a little bit and accompanied by a condescending smile, batting of eye lashes. Then it tends to mean something like “I’m sorry you are so ignorant” or “Go fall off the face of the earth, please”, any little ole thing that isn’t very nice. After all, you never, ever want to appear rude!

  23. Hi! I don’t know if you have heard/tried this paint yet, but I did my cabinets in a beautiful cream with a brown glaze in the corners. I used Cabinet Coat that I purchased at Benjamin Williams. The owner there had helped me pick out just the right shades and was extremely helpful. I have had it on my cabinets now for over 2 years and they are still beautiful. Touch ups are super easy. You do not get the brush stroke effect with this paint either. It is made to dry without showing the brush strokes. Everybody that sees my cabinets are amazed and all I used was a foam roller and a brush.

  24. Kristi, you have nothing but my sympathy. I have definitely learned to not be incredibly picky about paint, because most of my experiences sound about like this! Thank you thank you thank you for sharing the story and the frustration. It makes us all realize that you are a mortal, and an extremely hard working one at that. No fake smiles! DIY can be frustrating! Keep it real.

  25. Oh Kristi — the SW story you told is so right on. “Imagine me with a dumbfounded look on my face as I’m listening to this Sherwin Williams man tell me that he would have to color match a Sherwin Williams color from a Sherwin Williams paint card in order to give me the Sherwin Williams color that I picked out in the Sherwin Williams paint that I want, but their computer system won’t be able to match it correctly because it can’t read the yellow in the paint color, so I actually wouldn’t end up with the Sherwin Williams color that I wanted because evidently that’s not possible.

    I felt like my head was about to explode. How is it that Kelly Moore has this Sherwin Williams color in their system and can mix it in any paint you want, and Home Depot has this Sherwin Williams color in their system and can mix it in any paint you want, and Benjamin Moore has this Sherwin Williams color in their system and can mix it in any paint you want….

    but Sherwin Williams can’t even mix their own freaking color in the paint I want because they can’t color match it?!?!”

    Seriously makes NO sense whatsoever so you have to think operator error!!!!!

    I would take a break from it for now. And come back later. The difference between the sprayed and the hand painted is bizarre to say the least.

    I’m sorry you are having to deal with this.

  26. I do hope your smile tomorrow is a real one, Kristi. If that is not possible, God forbid, then do not feel that you must put on a fake smile for us. I can only speak for myself but I love that you are “keeping it real”. Although I know you are anxious to see that gorgeous satin green on the cabinet frames maybe finishing this for tomorrow could be for the day after instead and take a sorry break. You work so hard. Wine and chocolate have both been suggested. Both sound good to me! 😉

  27. Oh Bummer!
    I SO feel for you right now. I can’t even think of any words to cheer you up.
    So sorry.

  28. 1. Love the color!
    2. There are some people commenting on here who are less than kind. That’s too bad. I won’t respond to their level, but don’t let it get you down.
    3. When I’m in the middle of project that becomes frustrating, I find that taking a break is more of what I need (even one day), then pushing through and trying to beat the problem (which is my natural tendency).
    4. You rock!

    1. Couldn’t have said it better Deb! I’m thinking some wine and chocolate are in store for you! If I weren’t 2 states away I would be bringing some over with a roll of tape and some plastic and help you knock this out!

  29. Hahahaha…you kill me! Even though you aren’t laughing, I’m laughing with you! Not at your unfortunate situation, but how you always suck it up and start out new the next day. The one thing I do know, after following your blog for sometime, is that you will get it done and IT WILL BE BEAUTIFUL! From someone who can’t nail a board together….I’m rooting for ya!

  30. Kristi, you’re awesome! I love you’re blog soooo much because it’s so real, and tells the true trials and tribulations of DIY. Your color choice is fantastic, and so is your persistence. I know it will pay off, and can’t wait to see what happens next! Rooting for you in Missouri!

  31. Kristi, I’m so sorry that you’re having these paint frustrations. I’m pretty analytical. so your decision process sounds familiar. And I’d have the same irritation with poor expectation management of the paint mixing and this-is-just-as-good-as advertising. I wish I could recommend something, but you have much more experience with paint than I do.

    What I do want to reiterate (as I’ve said it many times before) is what inspiration you provide with your blog. You are fearless, and I really admire you so much for that. You don’t seem to hesitate to jump in and sand it off and start over. No greater painting wimp than I am ever existed. It takes me forever to make all the decisions required to paint the first stroke, although I’m not as bad as I used to be, thanks in part to following your example. However, I’ll go around the world to prevent stripping paint to start over. I’m in complete awe of your just-do-it-to-get-it-right attitude.

  32. Don’t worry about being too real! We all have our moments. I am not sure how you are still sane in such an insane situation!

  33. Awww Kristi. Been there SO many times. Dealing with the frustrations of DIY. Feel your pain, friend. I’m so sorry the paint didn’t work out. But you’ll triumph in the end — I KNOW it. And don’t worry about pasting on a happy face. Life isn’t always happy. Sometimes it sucks. Just be real with us. That’s why we love you. 🙂

  34. Hang in there Kristi. Frustration because you were told the wrong information to acquire your desired look is the single. most. frustrating moment for any DIYer, period. We always hope the people manning the front desk or stocking the shelves might know more about mixing our paint and able to ask questions…gahhhhhh!! I feel for you.

  35. Hey, just a thought that came from when I was painting my kitchen… I used a foam roller instead of a brush with my trim because I had the EXACT same problem… I rolled the doors and they looked fantastic (I got the paint from Valspar in a semi-gloss because that’s what had enamel in it so it would work for my kitchen), then went to paint the surround and it looked terrible. It even looked like a different color of paint, and you could see every brush stroke that ever existed. So I used a foam roller for EVERYTHING and it turned out all with the same satin finish as the doors.

    I can’t claim it looks as perfect as yours, but I’m pretty happy with it. Might that be an option to fix this?

  36. The doors are different because they’re sprayed- thinner coats & more even coverage. Also, the reason they have less shine. Please consider buying an HVLP?

  37. I’m sorry this had been so frustrating for you, but I have to admit I love your rant! I love how you share both the ups and downs of your projects. It makes me feel less crazy when things go wrong for me to know things like that happen to people with much more experience like you. That’s why I enjoy your blog so much. Thanks for sharing everything and keeping it real!

  38. Hang in there! Go back and look at pictures of the kitchen before you started any remodeling and look how far you’ve come!!! It is going to be beautiful and I can’t wait to see the finished product.

  39. Its so funny how different paints work for different people. I LOVE the Benjamin Moore Advance. After so many trial and errors with other paints and over 3 months of having my kitchen torn apart we finally found the Advance paint. I sprayed the doors and brushed the frames and they look identical. Nothing is shiny and we chose Satin too. That is so strange that yours is different. Hope you figure it out soon. Good luck. I know how frustrated you are.

  40. Kristi’s Mom, would you please cook dinner for Kristi tonight so she can come over and laugh??? She needs it so badly.

    And Kristi, please before you sand too much, would you just try to sand down the shine with a very fine grit sand paper to see if that gets rid of the gloss. Maybe you won’t have to go the full route you’re thinking right now. Keeping my fingers crossed.

    Forget the plastered smile. We love you for your truthfulness.

  41. Hi Kristi,
    I follow you on a daily basis and believe you are a fantastic DIYer. I am also a DIYer and really appreciate what you do! I hate that you are having such a difficult time with your k cab paint results. I have racked my brain and the only thing I have concern about is the wood. Could it possible be the raw oak cabinet wood that you started out with. The new oak with more of an open grain has a tendency to absorb moisture (paint) and so it gives the duller satin finish. The plywood that you used for the soffit was primed and sanded so slick that: Could it be possible this is the reason for the difference in finish? Sound crazy?

    1. That’s what I have been thinking too, Nancy. I think that the various woods of each part may be absorbing the paint differently. I am having this issue with various pieces of trim and woodwork throughout my house because they aren’t all the same, Different room additions at different times over the years. I’m using the same paint everywhere but it looks different and goes on differently from room to room. Some areas need two coats and some need three or more. I don’t know what the answer is though. I guess I’m not as worried about it, I’m just saying it’s at least all the same color…white…. and calling it good enough. I know you’ll figure it out Kristie and it will be fabulous in the end! I just love this shade of green that you have chosen.

  42. Taking a bunch of deep breaths on your behalf! Seems to me that SW has an employee education problem where you went. Well….that is not what I’m hearing in my head lol, but it’ll do. Prayers up for an “aha” moment that moves you right along!

  43. Oh my god, I so agree! The hand painted looks awful and that door looks just gorgeous. Note to self- I will not try a combo of spraying and hand painting. It’s either all brush or all sprayer after envisioning all that sanding you are going to do.

    But that door does look really, really good…. 🙂

  44. I love that you won’t settle for anything other than what you want. You have very good reasons for going with latex and you have a vision that you don’t want to compromise for convenience. Thanks for going through all this so we can learn from you and thank you for sharing. This will all be a distant memory in a few months and your kitchen will be what you want, plus you’ll be able to touch up the cabinets (I do remember when you touched up the apartment ones and the paint sheen didn’t match and you had to completely repaint, so you are definitely on the right track). Chin up.

  45. Good for you for sticking with it. I would have called in a professional painter by now. When it’s done, it will be beautiful.

  46. Kristi, you will be so happy with the Advance paint in the end. The durability is excellent! Yes, the satin finish has a shine. The type of brush used can have a impact on whether there are streaks. (Been there, done that Lol). The one I used first time had absorbed the leveling agent and therefore left streaks.
    It’s important to sand between coats, as well as use light coats. Humidity and temperature has a huge play in how fast it dries. Never run back over partially dried areas as that guarantees streaks. You can use fine steel wool to lightly sand and that may also reduce shine for you.
    I hope the store gave you the detailed usage brochure! That is super helpful and if followed, will produce beautiful results.
    It’s looking beautiful, Kristi!! You’re my favorite blogger and know the end result will be stunning!

  47. I won’t even pretend to know much about it, but I was also wondering about the lighting’s reflection making it look shiny. Also, could it be that the doors and the top part of the cabinets are two different types of wood that perhaps soak up the paint differently. Just a thought. I just love following your progress and think you’re doing a fabulous job. Hang in there!

  48. can you elaborate on spraying showing the sprayer and the settings you use on the compressor?
    I just picked up a used sprayer at an estate sale and need to learn how to use it. You sound like a detailed pro at this so please share that in an upcoming blog. I look forward to your daily thoughts and solutions!

  49. Hi Kristi:
    I don’t know what that guy at the paint store was talking about, but I bought the cricket sprayer after seeing you recommend it on your website and I’ve done all my kitchen cabinets in a LATEX with them and have had no problems at all. I even switched from kilz primer cleaned the gun and them wen tto the latex. Again no problems. I’ve had my share of “I know it all employees at my local HD.” and have learned to mostly ignore what they have to say when I know I’m right.

  50. Kristi, go into the most comfortable room in your house and take a long nap. Make sure the room is cool and dark. It will help refresh you and when you are sleeping, this paint problem will go away for a while. Sleep until in the morning. That’s what I do.

  51. I don’t know what clear coat you used but I learned something from another blog that helped on my minwax water based clear coat. All clear coat starts out as glossy. To make satin companies put an additive in the can. If this additive does not get mixed well before you use it the clear coat will come out glossy. Minwax also puts date codes on their products. The longer the clear coat sits the more the additive will settle on the bottom. The blog didn’t share the code, but they said they had talked to minwax for this problem and the CSR shared it with them.

  52. I don’t doubt the SW clerk’s wacky information at all. I fell out of love with Sherwin Wms paints years ago, when they one too many times told me that I could not get certain colors of theirs in a quart! As a former decorative painter, quart sizes were essential when mixing ratios of paint to glaze. I asked them why every other paint manufacturer had quarts available in all of their colors and was told it is because SW’s tints are so much more powerful and potent than anyone else’s, so there was no way to put 1/4 of a drop of xxx into a quart. Okay, whatever. Keep your superhuman tints. No company is going to force me to purchase a gallon when I only need a quart. There are plenty of other fish in the sea!

    Keep on plugging away, Kristi. You will get it done eventually and will have even more wisdom to share by the end of it all.

  53. I hope you send a copy of this blog post to Sherwin Williams. Thats just ridiculous that they have to color match and can’t even match their own color correctly.

  54. I feel your frustration…..

    Question…won’t everything under those pot lights look shiny? Regardless of how the paint was applied, won’t the light itself just make it all shine?

  55. Kristi, I admire your determination and spirit. I’m sorry these last days have been such a bummer. I know in the end your cabinets will be beautiful. Sending you a digital hug from the east coast { }.

  56. Hi, regarding the metal parts of your husband’s wheelchair, I recommend that you check out a moldable rubber called Sugru. You can order it at It’s great stuff. I have repaired many items with it, and it many users have made bumpers from it.

  57. You never have to slap on a fake smile for us. We appreciate your honesty about the products you choose and can sympathize with your frustration. I once found a friend sitting on her kitchen floor sobbing after spending four days trying to strip decades of paint from kitchen cabinets, only to find that the wood was uneven and UGLY. I had to completely redo a dining room table top after the cat decided to investigate wet poly. Have you ever tried to sand cat fur and claw marks? I would send a copy of this post to Sherwin Williams’ corporate offices. I’d be interested to read their response. In the mean time, pour yourself a glass of something refreshing, buy a bunch of pretty flowers and breathe. Your kitchen will be finished, and it will be everything you’ve hoped for. Brava.

  58. I, admittedly, haven’t read through all of the comments and it’s possible someone else has asked this question but…have you had the lights on while you were painting the cabinets? The heat from the lights would affect the dry time on the paint. The closer to the light you are painting, the faster it will dry the paint. The more incredibly irritating it will be. There’s a reason that I know this. Ah hem.

    Another thing…..breathe. We’ve all gone through this hell, one way or another. Sometimes, it’s best to step back for a day or so. Your sink is working. You’ve got awesome countertops. Things are ok, right? If you don’t paint cabinets for a day….they won’t fall off the wall. They’ll still be there in another day. Get some space between you and your kitchen for a bit. Have some fun. When you return, you return with a vengeance. 🙂

  59. You have more tenacity than anyone I know – you are true to your vision and don’t give up – I admire you! Sorry to hear this is not going well for you – strange that painting would result in a shinier finish than spraying – hmmm. But, thank you for forging ahead and sharing your experience with us – many times we feel alone in our frustrations – I appreciate you sharing both the good and bad parts of your reno:) Now, enjoy some chocolate and a great glass of wine…or two – good vibes are being sent your way:)

  60. It’s OK to be frustrated, we don’t want fake smiles. We want real life. Real life renos have problems. And besides, the reno TV shows all have problems; when they don’t they invent them. What about using a micro-fibre roller? That’s what I used with that BM paint and it turned out beautifully.

  61. Oh dear, Kristi! I just want to pet your hair and whisper soothing things in your ear while pouring you a nice stiff drink! It *will* all turn out OK, meanwhile, I totally understand why your frustration level is so high. That paragraph about your experience at the SW store? You are a far, far better woman that I, because I probably would’ve wanted to punch a few faces in! Jeez!

    WHY is the finish looking so different between the cabinet frames and doors? Someone up thread mentioned that it might be the difference in application – that the sprayed doors are more satin because the coats are thinner, vs. the cabinet frames being hand-painted, but that doesn’t make *that* much sense to me. So frustrating! If I was local to you, I’d be at your place in a heartbeat to help you sand, tape off, and hang plastic!

    More work ahead, but it will be worth it in the long run. It’s still going to be a gorgeous kitchen when you are done, unfortunately hitting a bump or two on the way.

    P.S. Just hit *delete* when you see any snotty comments from the unhelpful, mean jerks on this post. Remember, those kinds of people are why society has problems with people relating to each other.

  62. I have been painting my cabinets for a month now. I read soooo many blogs and pinned tons of info on Pinterest. I too used the advance paint & was told it would cover in 2 coats (by SW clerk). After primer PLUS 4 coats of paint on my frames I am soooo tired of painting!! It took me 5hours to paint just 1 coat. I will say I bought a purdy brush bc I was getting brush strokes too. I also added floetrol and still noticed brush strokes! Ugh!!! After 4 coats of paint I think the brush strokes are less noticeable. I sprayed the doors and no brush strokes. I would suggest painting multiple coats with a nice brush and see if that helps. Good luck! I for one, will NEVER paint kitchen cabinets again!!

  63. Kristi, Could it be possible that the particular bulbs in your can lights are casting a light that is causing the paint near the ceiling to look shinny? We have a paint from SW that is yellow with a regular light bulb but turns gold with the curly-que energy saving bulbs.

  64. Oh wow! Girl you sure have a quandary on your hands, but I have total confidence that you’ll make it right! I love the green! It’s really prettier than it was in the inspiration picture! I just hope you can get all the glitches worked out – way frustrating! I went to a Home Depot once to have them color match a shade of beige. They couldn’t do it! I said “But it’s BEIGE!” You never know what you’ll come upon when doing DIY projects, but in the end, it sure is rewarding to see all that hard work looking so gorgeous and knowing that you invested so much of yourself into your home! When I painted my kitchen cabinets (they were original 1980’s blond wood) I sanded a bit, then primed them and then used a small foam roller on both the doors and cabinets, touching up small areas with a small brush. The paint went on great but when I added poly to protect them, it turned yellow! It was the first time I’d ever done such a project and I guess I didn’t get the right thing. So, I lightly sanded them and repainted and they’ve held up great for 8 years now! Good luck and I’m looking forward to the next installment! Hugs, Leena

  65. So frustrating for you! It looks lovely so far. You can do this! Go, Kristi, go! We’re cheering you on!

  66. Your experience at Sherwin-Williams sure sounds familiar. The people I’ve dealt with at my local store either don’t seem to have much knowledge about the product they’re selling or don’t care. The last time I was there the clerk was busy watching a football game and was obviously annoyed at having to mix paint. I’ve thrown in the towel with them — there are better paints on the market (IMO) and with the amount of work that goes into a paint job it’s more than worth it to me to drive out of my way to buy paint.

    Don’t apologize for the rant. I am really sorry you’re having these problems, but one of the reasons this blog is an absolute must read for me (and the ONLY blog I have actually subscribed to) is that you go into so much detail about your process, what you tools you use and like, what worked and didn’t, what you would have done differently, etc. You continually amaze me with what you are able to accomplish! I know you are really frustrated, but just stop and look around at what you’ve already done — absolutely gorgeous and professional looking! Maybe you should take a break for awhile and go do something fun. I am loving the green cabinets — I really wasn’t sure about the color choice, but it looks great. Your kitchen is going to be fantastic and worth all the work and frustration!

  67. I’m sorry you are having trouble with the paint. I hope that it gets worked out today with the spraying process. The color is perfect and while I like the semi-gloss look, I realize that isn’t what you are going for and it IS your kitchen! Praying that all goes well today with the tape and spray process. Hang in there! (Also, sorry that some people are rude)

  68. I had sherwin Williams tell me the same thing about the pro classic in a deep base just two weeks ago. I really don’t get it. Aren’t they supposed to be a PAINT store? How can they not fulfill such a simple wish? I admit I was in complete disbelief when I read about your color issue though. That takes the cake. My sympathies to you. Just spray it all, and then hopefully we will all get to live vicariously through you and your lovely kitchen!

    1. Ditto on Ruth’s comments, and thank you, Kristi, for sharing your experience and frustrations with DIY’ers.

  69. I can empathize. I’ve been there. It sucks, it’s infuriating and your rant is completely appropriate. Second of all, I can only assume that some Sherwin Williams stores are better than others. I am a faithful BM user but have used SW on occasion. It floors me that they have almost no color formulas in their system (including, apparently, their own) and of the three times I’ve tried it, they have never been able to accurately match a color. Are they mixing paint with Commodore 64 computers or what?

    As for the Advance paint, I’ve used both it and Aura too many times to count and I prefer Aura because I feel like it’s easier to use. Also, rest assured that that shine will dull down quickly. As for the problems applying it, who knows. Like I said, I feel like Advance is more touchy about its application. None of that helps you right now though. From the pictures, I don’t think it looks bad at all, but it’s not my house and photos are different from real life. If you can tolerate it (and that’s hard when your kitchen is in shambles), I’d take a break from it for a little bit just to make an attempt at retaining your sanity.

    Best of luck to you, whatever you decide. You have my sympathies.

  70. Be careful about listening to the salespeople at the paint counter. Not sure what kind of training they receive, if any. I wanted to paint some furniture and the store that sold my favorite Benjamin Moore paint was closed so I went to Sherwin Williams. The salesperson recommended I buy All Surface Enamel Latex Base. That was a terrible recommendation. The coffee table remained tacky for months and I finally ended up having to seal it with a couple coats of poly. Painted some shelves and the exact same problem, tackiness. For the price I paid, I would have hoped to get a better product. Now I’m skeptical about using any SW product.

  71. If I were in your shoes, the next time you want to buy Sherwin Williams paint, I’d try a different SW store!

  72. Hi Kristi,
    I have a question for you… When you have to sand down what you’ve already painted, how much do you sand off? All the way to bare wood? I don’t have experience with this, so I need your expertise.
    Thanks! And I think the color is looking great!

    1. I don’t sand it all the way down to bare wood. I generally just sand it until it’s really smooth again. And as long as the part that you’re sanding is coming off as a fine powder (rather than rolling or pilling up on the sandpaper) then that means it’s thoroughly dry and you can paint over it.

  73. Years ago we painted woodwork trim a deep blue semi gloss and it was shiny (high gloss look) when finished. Used an oil base. The painter told us it would dissipate over time. And it did. Is it possible the shine using your paint would do the same.

  74. Did you end up adding Floetrol to the Advanced paint? I am having a rough time with it myself although I am not using a sprayer. Foam roller left teeny bubbles in the finish so I sanded them down and went with a mohair mini roller. That left lint and a weird ripple lines/marks in the finish! UGH! So I talked to my BM store and showed them the cabinet door and he said he I wasn’t using enough paint on the roller and that’s why it left those marks. Now I am contemplating using Floetrol but I’m sort of afraid it will ruin the paint since its already self-leveling. I wish I would have never bought Advanced!

    1. I have read through your posts and feel your agony. I am currently painting my cabinets with the BM Advance. I am also using a HVLP sprayer and it is spraying wonderfully with only a 10% dilution with water. I called BM customer service and asked them about adding a Latex Extender like Floetrol and they told me that BM Advance is a not compatible with any extending product like Floetrol or the one I have on hand from SW. I am considering using a top coat from from General Finishes called High Performance Top Coat because while the BM Advance is supposed to be hard after a good cure up time the GF Top Coat does dry super hard.

      I think the difference in glossiness could be from thinning the paint to spray but not to hand paint. Let me know your thoughts on this?

      1. I think the difference in sheen was because I brushed it on, because I didn’t thin my paint at all. I also think that the sheen differences are more noticeable on dark colors, and less noticeable on white cabinets. I did finally find the perfect sheen by topcoating my cabinets with Rust-Oleum water-based polyurethane in a matte finish. It’s really beautiful and very durable.

        1. Thanks so much for your reply. I glad you got it worked out. I think I am definitely going to follow your lead and top coat with a water based finish. Thanks and have a wonderful day!!

  75. Kristi, I see it probably been over a yr since you painted. we are getting reaady to do the same. How has this paint been holding up on your cabinets? this is our biggest concern.

    1. The final finish I went with — BM Advance paint with Rust-Oleum poly in a matte finish over the top — has held up perfectly. But quite honestly, if I were to do it over again, I’d just use Behr latex paint istead of the BM Advance. Behr is cheaper, and since I used the poly over the top, there really wasn’t any need to use the much more expensive BM Advance paint. But the Rust-Oleum poly gave me the exact finish I wanted (a very low sheen satin finish…I definitely wouldn’t call it matte, even though that’s what the can said), and it has been very durable and easy to clean.

  76. Thank you for posting this. I was “this” close to pulling the trigger on the Advance for a client who wanted a hard finish cabinet job. Doors/drawers will be sprayed and boxes will have to be brushed/rolled due to 3 open sides of the kitchen and just a nightmare to properly screen off. Ugh… back to the “drawing board” for them… You think Behr is ok for rolling the boxes? Ive always despised it, but I have heard good things about the Marquee line…. Client wants a satin finish, but durable.

  77. Not sure if someone already pointed this out but that paint requires a soft bristle brush. I see a Purdy XL in a picture which is a very stiff brush used for “cutting in”. For that paint you want their Nylox line, the one with the green label. You’ll still have some brush marks but not as bad.

    You might need a little more floetrol too. Maybe as much as 50/50. I usually add a few drops of water to thin the paint a little.