DIY kitchen transformation with KABRIC textured paint

Kitchens can be cold and uninviting because of the many hard surfaces and little opportunities to work with softer materials like textiles.

One way to transform your kitchen is using textured paint, like KABRIC by DetaleCPH.
The structural finish of plaster creates interest on the walls and gives the room depth.
The almost concrete-like finish chosen for this IKEA kitchen was achieved using KABRIC in the colour Dusty Dawn.

Changing the backsplash wall of this kitchen in the heart of Malmö, Sweden, was a quick and cost conscious way to give the room new life.
The floating shelves, also painted in KABRIC, blend in with the wall and become almost invisible.

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DIY kitchen makeover with KABRIC textured paint

Hi, I’m Nadine

Interior design expert, globetrotter and the creative mind behind this blog and NH.DESIGN.

I’m originally from Germany but have been living abroad for over 10 years, from Canada and the UK to Sweden.

So I ask myself the question what “home” means every day.
I have made it my mission to help as many people as possible to find their own answer to this.

Join my creative world on Instagram @nhdotdesign or find out more about me

The kitchen before transforming the walls with KABRIC

The kitchen was originally built in the 1980s with typical stainless steel countertops, made-to-measure wooden cabinets and squared white tiles.
To open up the room and make it look brighter and lighter we decided to remove the wall cabinets, including the old integrated fan. 

Before the kitchen makeover with KABRIC.

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    KABRIC application

    To create interest and depth we decided against regular paint on the main kitchen wall. Instead, we went with textured paint, giving the wall an almost concrete-like effect. The KABRIC colour we used is called Dusty Dawn and is a great light grey that gives just enough texture without overwhelming the small-ish room.

    The application of KABRIC above the kitchen countertop takes about 1 day (if you’re starting early in the morning).

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    Pro Tip

    Have a look at the many instruction videos by DetaleCPH on YouTube or their website.

    Prepping the wall to get ready to apply the KABRIC textured paint

    There is not much prep that needs to be done to prepare walls for KABRIC.
    Make sure the walls are dry and even, but even small imperfections can be interesting to work with.

    Use painters tape around connecting walls and ceiling, and put down paper covers or drop cloths to protect the countertop.

    And don’t forget to tape off around outlets (or remove the covers completely)!

    Since our walls were quite damaged from removing the original kitchen we decided to replace parts of the drywall, fill everything and paint with primer before applying KABRIC. 

    The right tools to apply KABRIC textured paint

    There are 2 ways to apply KABRIC to the walls:
    1. Use a paint roller and trowel or
    2. Use a large paint brush.

    We’ve installed this KABRIC using a roller and trowel.

    You’ll also need masking tape, a cloth or paper to cover the floor and/or countertop and sandpaper if you want to sand off any KABRIC that you applied too thick on the first layer.

    The first layer of KABRIC

    Use the paint roller to apply KABRIC to the wall, don’t be shy on the amount, this is not like painting.
    Then take the trowel and evenly spread the KABRIC across the wall, going from dry areas to wet ones. That way you won’t leave any marks in the wet KABRIC which then dry and don’t look very nice.
    Applying the KABRIC like this is almost like using plaster or filler.

    Leave the KABRIC to dry for about 3-4 hours before applying the second layer.
    I also recommend opening the windows because the paint has a quite pungent smell.

    To get the KABRIC nice and clean around the edges, like corners or around outlets, you can either use the trowel to cut in or, if you don’t feel skilled enough to do that, use your finger to run KABRIC into those corners.

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    Pro Tip

    KABRIC's consistency is somewhere between paint and filler so it drips quite a bit. Make sure you prep the countertop by covering it with paper or cloth.

    The second layer of KABRIC textured paint

    Once the first layer is dry you can directly apply the second layer. 
    If there are bumps or imperfections from the first that you don’t like you can scrape them off with the trowel or a filling knife, or carefully sand them off with sandpaper.

    The second layer is applied the exact same way as the first one, with the exception of using the paint roller to apply the KABRIC before spreading it with the trowel.

    Let the second layer dry for the same 3-4 hours as the first one (again preferably with the windows open).

    The Topcoat

    Usually using the Topcoat is optional when working with KABRIC but since it’s used behind the sink and stove as a backsplash it’s a good idea to protect the surface with an extra coat.
    DetaleCPH recommends the Topcoat for this purpose, but you can also use the floor varnish from Flügger Färg or any other clear top coat.

    The Topcoat by DetaleCPH is applied with a large brush and enhances the KABRIC texture a little more.
    It doesn’t change the colour though, which is great.

    Let the Topcoat dry over night before hanging anything on the wall again.

    Adding floating shelves painted with KABRIC

    To elevate the look I added floating shelves to the kitchen. I wanted them to blend in with the wall so I decided to paint them in the same KABRIC Dusty Dawn.

    The shelves are simple pine ones that we cut to the right length. They’re 20 cm deep and 27 mm thick. I used these brackets from Amazon to attach them to the wall.

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    After the kitchen makeover with KABRIC textured paint

    With the new KABRIC textured paint the wall has an interesting effect and is finally the modern look we wanted. 

    The overall kitchen makeover with KABRIC took a little more than a day, including prep, drying times and styling. It’s a great eco-friendly, easy and cost conscious way to make any space more interesting.

    Bonus - Kitchen styling tips

    Styling a kitchen can be challenging because you don’t want to over-do it and take away precious countertop space.
    So the best thing to do is to use everyday, functional things you’d use in your kitchen anyway, like large chopping boards, food storage jars or beautiful plates and bowls.

    Group things in uneven numbers, like 3 or 5, to make it more interesting.

    Also work with different heights, like a large chopping board plus a smaller bowl on top of some books for example.

    You can also use picture frames to display your favourite recipe or a fun quote related to kitchen activities.

    Also read my post about styling tips for your home.

    With these design tips it’s easy to transform your kitchen (or any other room) with KABRIC textured paint.

    Thanks for reading!
    If you enjoyed this post, follow along for more interior design tips and inspiration on my Instagram @nhdotdesign and sign up for my Welcome Home Letter.

    Take care, Nadine

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