Have you considered wrapping your kitchen cabinets with vinyl if they’re fading or just not your style? Contact paper on cabinet doors offers a cost-effective DIY solution that can revamp the look of your kitchen without depleting your savings. All you need is to know how to cover kitchen cabinets with vinyl paper.

The best way to put contact paper on cabinets is by wrapping and gluing. To start, clear the cabinet and clean it as the surfaces must be free of grease, dirt, and grime. Next, measure the contact paper and cut it to fit all the doors, giving allowance for wrapping around the edges. Then, heat the vinyl as you wrap it.

That makes it sound easy to cover cabinets with contact paper, but many details go into it. You’ll also need to take a few extra steps to ensure your project succeeds. This post will take you through those steps and offer tips to help you achieve a decent finish you’ll love. But let’s first highlight some of the main benefits of using vinyl paper for kitchen cabinets. 

Vinyl Paper, Its Composition, Varieties, and Benefits

Vinyl paper is a self-adhesive plastic material that comes in rolls. It entails vinyl film layered with a paper backing and then coated with adhesive material for easy application. The other name is contact paper, but it has now evolved to include other varieties, such as vinyl wrap.

The diversity in vinyl paper types means you can customize your cabinet covers to match the theme, style, or design you want for your kitchen. You’ll find solid colors, prints, and patterns that mimic natural textures such as wood grain, marble, or granite. Some come with a glossy finish, while others have a matte or textured surface.

Which Types of Vinyl Paper Are Suitable for Cabinet Covering?

When choosing vinyl paper for your cabinets, consider its durability, ease of application, and style or aesthetic you’ve always desired for your cabinets. The following are some of the popular types that you can consider:

  • Adhesive-backed vinyl: It’s the standard type suitable for DIY projects, including cabinet covering and other applications such as lining shelves and drawers.
  • Peel-and-stick vinyl wrap: This variety is thicker than adhesive-backed vinyl and may require professional installation. It offers more durability, making it ideal for high-traffic areas for those with busy kitchens.
  • Heat and pressure-activated vinyl: It’s a thinner variety that requires heat and pressure for application. It’s suitable for wrapping around curved surfaces or intricate designs, making it an option for advanced skilled installers.

Have you ever wondered what is considered a minor kitchen remodel? Would vinyl wrapping kitchen cabinets fall into that category? Why?

For starters, contact paper on cabinet doors is affordable compared to other cabinet refacing options. Other benefits of covering kitchen cabinets with vinyl paper include:

  1. They are easy to remove and leave no residue, making it a reversible option to revert to the original cabinet look. 
  2. They require little maintenance and do not require replacement for a long time.
  3. They protect the cabinet surface from moisture, scratches, and fading from UV rays.
  4. They are easy to clean, requiring only a damp cloth or mild detergent for stubborn stains.
  5. The spectrum of colors and patterns available will give you more options that match your desired style.

If you find yourself wondering how to clean white cabinets that have yellowed, you may consider wrapping them with contact paper. 

Preparing for the Project of Vinyl Wrapping Kitchen Cabinets

Before you begin your cabinet wrapping project, gather all the necessary materials. These may include:

  • Vinyl paper: Measure accurately and purchase enough to cover the entire surface area of your cabinets.
  • Measuring tools: You may need a measuring tape or ruler to ensure precision during cutting.
  • Heat gun or hair dryer: If you use heat and pressure-activated vinyl, a heat source will be necessary for application.
  • Squeegee or smoothing tool: It’s necessary to expel air bubbles and ensure smooth application of the vinyl paper.
  • Scissors and utility knife: These will be useful for cutting the vinyl paper to fit corners and edges.
  • Cleaning supplies: Ensure the surfaces are thoroughly cleaned before applying vinyl paper. You’ll need degreasing agents, mild detergents, and sponges or cloths.
  • Optional: Cabinet hardware removing tools like screwdrivers and sandpaper for smoothing out any imperfections.

Once you have all your materials, it’s time to prep your cabinet surfaces. You don’t want any complications when wrapping the cabinets with vinyl, so the cabinet surface and doors have to be smooth. Follow these steps:

1. Clean the Surfaces

Use degreasing agents or mild detergent to remove any grease, dirt, or grime from the cabinet surfaces. Wipe them down with a damp cloth and let them dry completely.

2. Remove Hardware

If possible, remove all cabinet hardware, including handles, knobs, and hinges. It will make it easier to wrap the cabinets without any obstructions.

3. Smooth out Imperfections

You can rub off any uneven, rough patches on the cabinet surfaces with sandpaper. It will help the vinyl paper adhere better and achieve a smoother finish.

Once your cabinets are prepped, you can start applying the vinyl paper. Follow our step-by-step guide for a successful wrapping project! 

Step-by-Step Guide on How to Cover Kitchen Cabinets with Vinyl Paper

Measure and Cut

  1. Measure the surfaces of the cabinets precisely. Remember that ruler or measuring tape we listed in the preparation section? Use it to measure the surfaces of the cabinets precisely.
  2. Then, measure the vinyl paper and trace the ideal cutting edges.
  3. Cut the vinyl paper slightly larger than the measured size to allow for adjustments and trimming.

Application Techniques

  1. Peel a small portion of the paper backing and apply the vinyl paper from one edge, smoothing it out gradually to prevent air bubbles.
  2. Use a squeegee or a flat, smooth object to press the paper firmly onto the surface, working from the center outward.
  3. This step requires a heat gun or hair dryer to blast heat while smoothing the paper to make it more pliable and adhere better to contours.

Dealing with Corners and Edges

  1. For corners, make relief cuts in the vinyl paper to allow it to fold neatly around the edge without wrinkling.
  2. Again, use your heat source to soften the vinyl around corners, aiding in smoother adhesion.
  3. Trim the excess material carefully with scissors.

Handling Cabinet Doors

  1. Remove cabinet doors for easier application.
  2. Place the doors flat on a clean surface before applying the vinyl paper.
  3. Follow the same application techniques as for the cabinet surfaces.
  4. For a flawless finish, avoid stretching the vinyl paper too much, which may lead to uneven application or tearing.

Tips for Ensuring Longevity

  1. Use quality vinyl paper designed for durability and easy cleaning.
  2. Always avoid harsh chemicals, abrasive cleaners, and brushes as they could cause damage.
  3. Use cabinet liners or pads to protect the vinyl surface from scratches and heavy objects.
  4. Periodically inspect the vinyl for any lifting or damage and address it promptly to prevent further issues.

Final Thoughts on Covering Kitchen Cabinets with Vinyl Paper

If you’re wondering why a kitchen remodel is so expensive, transforming your cabinets with vinyl paper could be a budget-friendly and straightforward option to consider. If you do it right, you can achieve a professional-looking finish that will revamp your kitchen aesthetics without breaking the bank.

Use our step-by-step guide and troubleshooting tips to ensure a flawless, enduring finish. Remember, vinyl wrapping does not make up for structural damage or wear and tear on cabinets, so addressing those issues before the application process is essential. If the damage is too extensive, you may consider replacing your cabinets altogether. In that case, order cabinets online from us for high-quality, affordable options that will transform your kitchen.

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