Temporary Cabinet Door Update with Painted Adhesive Paper

row of blue and green cabinets
  • 2-6 hours
  • Beginner
  • 0-250

Updating a kitchen can be done easily with some simple updates to a cabinet door. You don't need to spend a lot of money to give your kitchen a new look. The new look can happen when you simply take your cabinet doors and add some painted adhesive paper. This type of paper is much like wallpaper, but has a sticky, adhesive backing.

Many homeowners like this approach to updating their cabinet doors because it's easy, inexpensive, and adds color, character, and style. Updating a cabinet door with adhesive paper can be done within a few hours.

Step 1 - Look for Paper that Coincides with Current Decor

You're going to be changing the focal point of your kitchen with a change to a cabinet door. When you try to incorporate many different styles, colors, and other designs into a kitchen that is predominantly one style, it will look very unorganized. When you are looking into using some painted adhesive paper for your cabinet door update, you should use the same colors and designs.

Step 2 - Clean Cabinet Door before Adhering Paper

With some warm water and mild dish detergent, go over the surface of the cabinet door to clean off the dirt and grime build up. Just because the cabinets are in the kitchen means they will have more dirt than in other areas.

Step 3 - Lightly Sand the Cabinet Door Surface

using a sanding block

The adhesive paper is going to need a surface it can stick to. Cabinet doors that are glossy, have a hard surface, or are very smooth will need to be scuffed up a little to give the adhesive something to grab onto. Use some very light grit sandpaper, something like 160 or even 220, and lightly go over the surface of the cabinet door.

Give the door one or two swipes with the sandpaper. Do not use an electric sander. However, wrap the sandpaper in a block of wood. Blow off the dust, or wipe down with a clean rag.

Step 4 - Make Final Cuts on Cabinet Door

When cutting out the adhesive paper, you should never try to get it to the exact measurements. When trying to get the paper exact, you could possibly cut it too short. The best way to make the cuts is to cut it close on a flat surface, then place on the cabinet door. Once on the door you can make the final cuts with a sharp utility knife.

Step 5 - Work out Bubbles

When you put up the adhesive paper, you're probably going to get some air bubbles. Getting rid of these is easy when you use a flat edge. Using a squeegee, or even a flat bladed scraper, will get rid of the bubbles. Rub the utensil on the cabinet door, from the center out, to squeeze the air bubbles out.