When I first started my decorative and painting business, buying a paint sprayer was a no-brainer. My pieces would have a smoother, more professional finish, and I could crank out pieces much faster than painting by hand. I did a ton of research and ended up buying a Graco HVLP FinishPro. (HVLP stands for high volume low pressure.) I used that thing a ton and Jeff even built me a spray booth in the basement.
(Man, I can’t believe I didn’t watermark that image.)
I started working with different paints and finishes and found I loved the look of a piece painted by hand. It was therapeutic for me, too! I was painting so often by hand that we took down the spray booth to regain the space. A gut instinct told me to hold onto the sprayer, though. I thought about selling it many times over, but I could never bring myself to list it. Even when we moved and I was throwing things overboard like I was on a sinking rowboat, I kept the sprayer. Jeff raised an eyebrow as I cocooned it in shrink wrap. “We will almost certainly have cabinets that need to be painted”, was my response to his silent question.
Well, I sure enough do have cabinets to paint!
…and plenty of them!
So, I had the sprayer and cabinets to paint, but I didn’t have a place to spray them. You may think you could just lay out a tarp, but paint that’s being sprayed really needs to be contained. Fortunately, there are a lot of easy-to-set-up spray tent/shelter options on the market that weren’t available back in the olden days of blogging.
I did a bit of looking around online and settled on the reasonably-priced ($48.98) Homeright Spray Shelter.
The tent is lightweight and easy to set-up, which I liked. I felt like the size of it is a little awkward, but I learned that the key is using that small space well, not having more space.
It took me a little bit of time to figure out a set-up that worked. At first, I set 4 cabinets inside the tent and walked, hunched over, around them. It was clumsy, back-breaking, and I kept dragging the hose over cabinets that have already been sprayed. Despite the inefficient set-up, I was able to get both sides of the cabinet doors primed.
I needed to be able to put one door inside the tent, at a good height, and have the ability to spin it around, so I sprayed all sides. I was able to “build” a somewhat sketchy rotating stand that worked. It was made out of a furniture dolly, a large box, and some paint points (those little orange things which most likely are not really called paint points.)
It was a much more efficient set-up. The overspray all went into the tent, I could spin the cabinet door to evenly paint all sides, and it was easy to remove the wet door as well, so I could take it to dry in the garage and paint the next door.
Because of the hose mishap with the primer, we had to lightly sand with 220 grit paper prior to painting to ensure a smooth finish.
I was also a little rusty with the spray gun and there were some drips to contend with, but I shook off the cobwebs and the finish ended up looking amazing. Once they were dry to the touch, I brought them into the studio to dry for a couple of days before we put them back on the hinges.
And I love how the cabinets are turning out! I have more cabinets to paint, so I’ll share the paints, finishes, and other tools I’m using soon.
Now that I have my system down, I am looking forward to painting the other set of built-ins and then it’s on to the kitchen!