The Gold Leafed Cabinets (On The Mural Wall) Are Finished!

I have to admit that on Saturday, as I was working on the studio cabinets, I began to think I had make a serious mistake in deciding to add the gold leaf to my cabinets. My doubt had nothing to do with how it looks. I absolutely love how it looks. But my doubt was 100% because I thought I’d never get it finished. Day after day after day of working on taping off the outline, painting on adhesive, adding gold leaf, sealing the gold leaf, seemed never ending.

But I finally finished all 20 cabinet doors and drawer fronts for the mural wall. I didn’t finish them yesterday. I got up early (for me) and finished them this morning. 😀 I was so determined that the bulk of my work day today wasn’t going to be taken up, one more time, with gold leafing cabinets. So my only option was to get up early (at 5:00am!) and finish the last three drawers and two doors so that when I start my normal work hours this afternoon, I can finally move on to something else.

And now that it’s done, and all that work is in the rearview mirror, I can say that I’m so incredibly happy that I took the time to finish this detail on my cabinets. There’s nothing like a gold leaf cabinet detail on pink cabinets to add to that flowery, feminine look I’m aiming for in this room. Here’s how the cabinets look with all of the gold leaf finished…

I so wish that y’all could see these in person. They’re just so pretty and shiny.

I know that gold leaf accents on cabinets aren’t for everyone. I know some may think it’s garish, or I shouldn’t have wasted time on it since it’s just a studio. But this is for me, and I love it. And it’s hard for me to look at any room and think, “This is just a (enter name of utilitarian room), so I’ll just do the basics.” That’s just not how my mind works. I think any room can look special and custom and personalized, no matter how utilitarian the room is intended to be.

Since I just finished this morning, I didn’t have time to clean up the mess. There’s gold leaf all over the floor, and I’m sure there’s even still gold leaf floating through the air in there. 😀 It’s going to be quite a big job to get all of that cleaned up.

I seriously can’t stop looking at it. Even when I’m not working in the studio, I find myself walking in there several times just to stare at the cabinets and get a peek at that shimmery gold goodness.

I still have a few things to do in order to finish the inside of the cabinets. All of the cabinets and drawers need to be vacuumed out, and then I still need to wire the electrical outlets at the back of three of the cabinets. After that’s done, I can install the shelves, and start putting things away in the cabinets and drawers. I’m so excited about getting things organized!

And just look how perfect the lights look in here. (I still have to put the shade on the other one.) I had originally used gold spray paint on the shades and left the cords and canopies black. But that didn’t look quite right to me, so I went back and added gold leaf on the shade, a clear coat on the white part, and gold leaf on the canopy and cord. You can see those DIY detail here. I think they’re perfect for my studio now. I love how the gold leaf on the cabinets is repeated on the lights.

Unfortunately, photos will never do these cabinets justice. The gold leaf is just so pretty in person!

This room is definitely turning out to be the most “me” room in our home. I mean, that makes perfect sense, right? It’s the first and only room that I’ve designed and decorated in our home that’s all for me. I don’t have to share this room with anyone else, and I don’t have to worry about what Matt might think about how I’m decorating it. So naturally it’s the most me, and will, no doubt, end up being my favorite room in our home.

I still have several things to do to finish this wall. The first thing I want to do today is to fill these spaces where the cabinets meet the side walls. That will make the cabinets look completely finished.

In addition to that, I need to:

  • Wire three outlets
  • Install the four countertop grommet outlets
  • Finish the countertop (the two missing laminate flooring pieces)
  • Finish installing the mural on the edges
  • Hang the other pendant light
  • Paint/gold leaf the center wall sconce
  • Wood fill, sand, caulk, prime, and paint the window trim
  • Clean the windows
  • Order and install the window shades

This room is taking forever, but I’m not going to cut corners just to get it done early. Creating the room is part of the fun!



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  1. I love how the gold leaf trim and the pendant lights compliment each other! I don’t recall a sconce on this wall, is that a new addition?

  2. Garish?!!? I don’t think it is garish! Later on when things are all done and the room is cleaned up, you will see it is not garish. I look forward to those pictures!

  3. This looks wonderful! The gold leaf does look great — the room is so large that the gold is not too much. The lights are perfect for the room. It is so nice to have this just the way you want it, since you will be working in here so often. You will be surrounded by beauty.

  4. It looks beautiful. Sometimes I question your selections, but they always turn out beautifully. You have a good eye for color and design.

    One thing, I have always wondered is why you don’t put drop cloths on the floor or counter tops while you are working. Not just in this room, but every room you have tackled. After all your hard work, I would hate to see them get damaged.

    1. You took the words out of my head! I think “why is she changing that?” When it’s finished always looks more beautiful than before! Yes, I wonder why no drop cloths or really paper? That’s the first thing I learned for my contractor. Also move as much possible out of the way!

    2. My countertop is covered with brown paper in the area where I’ve been doing the actual work. As far as drop cloths, I only use them when absolutely necessary. I can’t stand drop cloths, and I generally end up tripping on them. They’re a hazard for me, so I don’t use them if they’re not absolutely necessary. To define the “absolutely necessary” time, that would include me painting the ceiling and walls close to an entire wall of gold leafed cabinets that I just finished. I’ll cover the cabinets before painting the rest of the room, but I probably won’t cover the floor. I’ve been DIYing 30+ years, and it’s just the way I work. 🙂

  5. I love everything, and I’m not person who loves pink:) The light fixtures are perfect, such a good call to refinish them.

  6. That hardware on the doors and drawers is perfect with the gold leaf. Add in the lights and you really got this right. Great job and I’m so happy it is behind you!

  7. Loved what you ended up doing on the lights, the gold leaf really makes them look like the right finishing touch! When you put the gold leaf on your kitchen cabinets, didn’t it wear off over time? Are you not putting something over the gold leaf this time to protect that from happening to these over time?

  8. I love this!!! This is glam not garish. You did an amazing job. And the lights are perfect!
    Such a gorgeous space to create.

  9. Wow! As usual I love everything that you are doing and I admire your tenacity to stick with it and do everything exactly how you want it!

  10. This is MY favorite room you have ever done as well! So fun to watch you design and complete all of the projects! I need one of these at my house!

  11. Beautiful! I wasn’t in favor of the gold leaf on pink, but you proved me wrong again. I love everything about this wall. The light fixtures are perfect.

    1. Same here! I was very “ehhhh if you have to” about the gold leaf, and painting the light, and I would just like to say I was totally wrong.

  12. I had suggested the black light fixtures with gold on the inside would look more expensive than white. I didn’t care for the black canopy and cord with the white shade. I really like the white shade with the addition of the gold trim, cord and canopy! You never say something is good enough and keep tweaking things until they are perfect for you. Others may prefer a more utilitarian space but I love the pink, gold trim and floral. It will give you joy whenever you see the studio.

  13. Love the gold leaf and so excited it made its way back into your house. It made the green cabinets in your kitchen look so gorgeous and it is even better now against the pink cabinets in your studio. Well done! <3

  14. I will confess I am not a gold leaf fan. I wasn’t thrilled with it when you used it in your kitchen and loved the painted pink cabinets as they were. BUT there is something about gold leaf on those pink cabinets that is just stunning and I think they are gorgeous. I never would have believed I would ever say that … LOL. The pendant lights are perfect for the space and I have always loved the wallpaper, regardless of the size of the print. I totally understand why you say this room is totally you! I have to agree 🙂

  15. I once had my own “craft room” even before they were a thing. I took over my oldest daughters’ room when she went to college, knowing she planned to marry after graduating. I designed it for me, and Mister helped make cabinets, paint and wallpaper as well as hanging shelving. It was my haven for a few years, until we decided to move after 27 years! I could have re-created it in the new house, but I chose to just have a desk and share the room with Mister’s desk. I just don’t “create” much any more, so have no need. With just two of us, there are many spaces I can go for ME time. Enjoy this space of your own, I know how important that is for you! And it’s a beauty!

  16. Looks amazing Kristi! I certainly understand wanting certain details in rooms, even if my hubby and I are the only ones that see them. It’s all about self expression, and finding joy in the little things.

  17. Simply lovely. Don’t listen to the “practical” voices that interfere with creating, beauty, personality, expression…… and more.

    I’m about to embark on a bathroom/closet project capturing a small bedroom & remodeling old BRm. Taking a nod from YOU that these spaces where we start and end our day be expressive, happy, even perky, NOT just function. Did so in our kitchen & new porch, will never regret thinking “if she can express herself while still achieving function, practical needs so can we!”

    Your studio will take away the drudgery of work giving you high spirits to create! Amen!

    As an artist loving gold you might enjoy googling the Japanese art form Kintsugi. They reassemble broken ceramics with gold. Your gold leafing inspired me, I’m going to use it to reassemble my daughter’s childhood sunflower plate. Thank you, looking forward to her art having a new life.

  18. Kristi, It looks fabulous! I’m so thrilled with how pretty that color is on your cabinets! It truly will make this room a happy place. I hope you will have a zillion hours of fun in there creating to your heart’s content!

  19. the lights look amazing. Good call. I like the gold leaf as well–the pink is just not for everyone, but you love it so it’s perfect.

  20. I can’t even express how much I love this room. I had no idea that those light fixtures would look so good in white and gold. You have an amazing eye. I love the pink, the gold, the shiny white of the light fixtures. Brava!

  21. I am personally not a fan of pink. Or gold. I would never chose those colors to go into my own home. But what you have created in your studio is absolutely beautiful. It’s not garish. It’s vibrant class. I am learning from you that when it’s not exactly what I want, to keep going until it is.

  22. Hi Kristi,
    First your room looks incredible my husband and were wondering how did you get the laminate flooring on the edge of your counter tops look so good? We are thinking of putting laminate flooring in our basement but we are stumped of how to do the stairs thank you for any help and thank you for being a great inspiration

  23. Looks absolutely stunning!!! And, not that my opinion matters, but with the gold leaf on pink and also the shiny white lights with gold leaf, I love the mural so much more. Your design aesthetic is inspirational!

  24. I’m sure you were getting burned out doing all that trim but it’s done, and you will not regret it! It looks wonderful, and it is so heartwarming and makes me so happy that you are going in there just to admire the room that truly is YOURS! I’m sure some projects go fast, some are slow going, but they are all worth it…so you proved to me. I think a lot of us want fast results/instant gratification…lesson learned. Put in the time and effort…stand back and enjoy! Loving your studio!

  25. This is absolutely beautiful! I love what the gold leaf and the light fixtures are amazing! You are so creative! I am so excited to see your posts!

  26. Look how far you have come on this room. It is amazing. I like the light fixtures better than before, but I’m just not a gold person. However, it is not my room, it is your room and if it makes you happy, then that is how it should be. I love the wallpaper and the color of the cabinets. Especially like the work on the floor. Whew. You are almost there. What has been going on with that bathroom? Don’t paint the ceiling, leave it wood. You are the hardest, smartest working woman I know.

  27. Beautiful, Kristi. I love every detail. You’ll smile every time you are in the studio. How about a neon sign? I don’t know, but maybe, “Kristi’s Place” ???

  28. I’ve been reading some of your posts for awhile now and I want to tell you, those cabinets and shades are just BEAUTIFUL! I admire a lady that can do things like that. That’s not me.
    I can paint walls and trim 😁. I have done quite a bit of that over the years, but not carpentry. More power to you as you work on your projects!

  29. Being a list for all things lover, I love when you get to your list for the things that need the final touches. Congratulations for making this room so you!

  30. It still looks amazing even though it`s not quite finished yet but when you have finished it WOW what a beautiful workroom,

  31. I love everything about this room…except the gold leaf on the cabinets. I’m not a fan of gold leaf. You’re right…it’s not for everybody. I do find it garish. But the important thing is you love it…I find it detracts away from the beautiful cabinets, wall paper and lighting. But that’s just me.

  32. I absolutely love love love this! I’m planning to build a tiny home with a walk-in closet in the master. I hope you don’t mind me using this room for inspiration. You have a beautiful mind and imagination!