“New” Stainless Steel Appliances
Posted January 25, 2009on:
So, I made a small cosmetic change to the kitchen, that had big impact with new hardware – one small step toward making it more modern.
But the appliances, they were all black.The refrigerator was just a 2001: A Space Odyssey-level hulking black monolith that just anchored the whole kitchen. You couldn’t see the room, that thing was so distracting. But, it was a brand new refrigerator (everybody in New Orleans got a new one in late 2005).
I wanted a contemporary stainless steel appliances, but in a few years, when we do the big kitchen renovation there’s no guarantee that stainless will still be the trend. In fact, I think it’s already waning. So even a short term replacement was out of the question. I’d have to live with the dishwasher, refrigerator and compactor for the next few years.
And of course the white formica countertops are a problem too. That is actually what turned me down the “appliance makeover” path. I wanted to change the look of the countertops, not replace them. And yes, I was doing some very creative Googling on the topic. “Can I paint them?” The Google-verse said “yes” with definate caveats. Some folks had painted their formica countertop with a stainless steel finish. Wha?
And so I found it. Stainless steel paint.
I would like to preface what I say next with the following: I am a creative director in real life. I am very, very discriminating. I work each and every day at my job to make things that live online as beautiful and well designed as I possibly can. I fuss over the details of my home, and would not ever want to live with something tacky. I was completely skeptical of “stainless steel paint.”
But at less than $60 I could afford to give it the benefit of the doubt, and give it a test.
Let me say that ‘refinishing the appliances’ was something I snuck past Richard in passing, oh, so very lightly, that it barely registered on him. But I put it out there. The paint arrived, unmarked, unremarked upon. And the next Saturday morning I was off to the races, while he was doing dictation on the computer. I chose to do only the compactor (because we said we would get rid of it anyway when we tear out the old island). I followed the instructions to a T and I was meticulous with my masking tape. He came out for a coffee, rolled his eyes and shook his head. Now there was a skeptic. But when the compacter was finished, he was completely won over. It looked amazing. And so I was approved to paint the dishwasher, and the big black refrigerator.
Again: If I could afford to just go out any buy real stainless steel appliances with no concern for how long I would have them, I would’ve done that. But, $60 vs. $6000, well, you see where I’m coming from!
Caution: YMMV (Your Milage May Vary). The paint is not magic! The paint basically changes the color and value of your appliances. I probably would not recommend it if you have white appliances.
So here they are. I am very happy. The appliances are not big black eye magnets anymore, but basically complement the bland gray cabinets in their value. The paint merely changes the refrigerator’s color. You can still see some texture through it, even thought I primed with two coats of Zinser’s to knock the texture back a bit. But I never, ever think about it since I finished the job. The color and looks so good (for what it is), I simply never even notice.
It’s like my friend at the wine store recommending an inexpensive bottle: “It’s very good for the money.”
P.S. As you can see from this photo, Richard is happy with them, too.