Airstream Cabinet Update – DIY

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We are completely skipping important back story and jumping ahead here.  I promise this didn’t happen overnight and there was a whole process and plan behind all of it.

BUT…since we started on some of our DIY projects this weekend we wanted to share right away.

We will explain in more detail in other posts, but for our Airstream update we are doing certain upgrades ourselves and using professional help for many others (e.g. electric).

One of the big face lift items is refinishing the wood looking laminate cabinets.  Our cabinets are in good shape but we really want to brighten up the small space and go for something lighter.  Here are some BEFORE pictures:


I opted for paint.  I did a lot of research and read a lot of blogs about painting laminate cabinets.

We ultimately settled for the following process (that is still in progress):

  1. Select a paint.  I researched Rust-Oleum and some other options (I think one blogger used Glidden Gripper).  We picked Cabinet Rescue in white. (
  2. Remove cabinets from frames.
  3. Sand with 400 Grit fine sandpaper (I originally picked up something coarser but the service rep at the paint store recommended the 400 Grit – so we will see).
  4. Wipe away any dust from sanding.
  5. Using a high density foam roller, apply a base coat.

This is the step we are on and I can tell you we will definitely need a second coat but the finish looks good so far.



After letting the first coat dry for 24 hours we applied a second coat of paint to the cabinets.

Our Airstream cabinets have a slight texture to them.  We used a 400 Grit sandpaper and lightly scuffed and sanded the laminate but did not sand away the texture.  So after the first coat, some of that laminate color still bled through.

The second coat fully filled in the texture and covered any of the laminate still showing after the first coat.  We ended up with a very smooth finish while retaining some texture.

Here is a picture of a finished cabinet face.  I placed it against our current kitchen cabinets.  The finish is just as smooth and an even more vibrant white.

Cabinet face

Once we’ve re-installed them in the trailer we will upload some more photos!

One thought on “Airstream Cabinet Update – DIY

  1. Pingback: Buying an Airstream – New, Used, or Vintage? | Airdreaming

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