Death of a Cabinet

I recently did a major purge of my condo. My husband & I went through our books, chachkas, kitchen items that have been used once (or never---eek), and the (dreaded) closets. We had tons of old papers & boxes to recycle, a bunch of items to take to Goodwill/Consignment, and a pile that went to the trash. I love going through old stuff and getting that cathartic release as I look at my now-clean space.

Then my mom sent me this picture:

Oh boy.

To give you all some backstory, we're going to be doing a small cosmetic renovation at my parents place. My Mom thought that she would sand, re-stain, and lacquer their existing bathroom vanity in the name of being economical & eco-friendly. When I received this picture, I tried very, very hard not to respond "I TOLD YOU SO". Sorry, Mom.

It may seem like a noble effort to re-use existing cabinets, but sometimes we need to say goodbye. And I don't mean just trash cabinets and create waste. You can use them in your garage for extra storage, sell them on Kijiji, or even call a local organization like Home Re-use-ables to come collect and find a new home for them. However, there are several factors that we can look at when we're deciding to keep them in or rip out and start fresh:

1. Age

 Is this cabinet a senior? Did it go out of style 10 years ago? If it were a student, would it have the better part of a PhD? Yes? Get rid of it. 

2. Finish

Is the cabinet lacquered? Most likely. When lacquer ages it can really get deep into the wood, so even sanding can be ineffective in removal. Case & point in the picture above! Even though the cabinet was sanded, you can see how the stain took unevenly. 

3. Damage

Are there major dents & gouges in the doors? Cracks in the drawers?? Goodness gracious, you KNOW you need to get rid of it!!! Damage has the tendency to look worse when you attempt to cover it up.

As renovation contractors, we like our designs to be our own and usually install new cabinetry. We will always recommend the best solution for our clients to make their homes beautiful.

- A

P.S. Love ya, Mom!