June 11, 2014 by Sarah
Painting and staining cabinet doors is a very time consuming process, but by ordering custom doors for IKEA cabinets and doing it ourselves we were able to save a whole lot of money and get exactly what we wanted.
We purchased the cabinet boxes from IKEA and assembled/installed them ourselves. While we liked the simplicity of the boxes, I really wasn’t in love with any of the doors choices they have there. I wanted a simple shaker style door that didn’t look plasticy. The ADEL door style was an option, but I just didn’t like the feel of the door or the weird ridges between the stiles even though it comes in the 2 colors I wanted:
When purchasing from IKEA, the doors are actually one of the biggest expenses and we were able to get custom wood doors and paint/stain them ourselves for just about the same price as the ADEL doors.
We ordered out doors and drawer fronts from Scherr’s in Minot, North Dakota. It was insanely easy. Like, seriously. I just emailed them the list of cabinets that we bought (the cabinet number from the IKEA cabinet brochure), and they did the rest. No measuring was needed. They even boared the holes for the hinges that we purchased at IKEA. (IKEA has really great door hardware, FYI)
We had several options of door style, wood species, grade of wood, edge profile, etc.
We decided on a shaker door with a cross rail in the middle (Style 409)
The uppers are paint-grade poplar rails with MDF panels. I specifically asked for MDF panels after doing a ton of research. MDF takes paint very well and is very stable (don’t expand and contract as much as wood does). We stuck with solid wood rails for strength, although we did consider MDF rails as well.
The lowers are quarter-sawn white oak. We had the option to upgrade to premium, but it would have cost about $1k more, so we chose not to do it. They are the same shaker style with the cross rail in the middle. The drawer fronts are matching.
The edge profile is the same on all pieces and is very simple. (Style M) at was no additional cost.
The small cabinets at ceiling height will have glass fronts. Scherr’s does not supply the glass so I still need to figure out where to get glass.
They do however supply a vinyl retainer to hold the glass in place.
The cabinets came few weeks after I gave my final approval. I was very impressed with the packaging. Not a single thing was damaged.
Scherr’s does do custom painting with any Sherwin William color or clear finish of your choice. We decided not to go this route as it would have cost us an additional $2k to have it done when we could DIY it for about $200.
For the uppers I used one coat of Zinsser Smart Prime and two coats of Benjamin Moore’s Advance line in Paper Mache both purchased from Hirshfield’s.
Both were great. Both were expensive. I would recommend both.
The lowers will be a bit more complicated to say the least. I choose a “Stickley” Mission Oak finish recipe that I found online. It will much more involved than slapping some stain and poly on the doors and calling it good.
The recipe calls for a dye, sealer, gel stain, then finally a satin urethane to really make the grain pop. All were purchased from Rockler.
You can find the Stickley style recipes by Jeff Jewitt here.
I could not be happier with the quality of these doors and how they look so far. The upper could not have come out any better.
I am a little nervous to start in on staining the lower doors, but after doing a lot of research on finishes I think they will look great. I have taken an entire week off from the day job so I should have time to get this done then–no excuses. I will definitely be documenting the entire process for you all.
Has anyone else out there tried the Jeff Jewitt finishes? Anyone order custom doors for IKEA cabinets from Scherr’s? I would love to hear about your experiences. We liked it so much we ordered another couple doors for a cabinets that we plan to put in the back entryway…
Wish us luck.
*Yoo-hoo…..Today is the 2-year Anniversary of my blogging with St. Paul Haus. I can hardly believe it has been that long. Here’s to another great 2 years and many more completed projects! Cheers!