How To Glaze Cabinets

How To Glaze Cabinets

How To Glaze CabinetsThis article is on how to glaze cabinets. Glazing your cabinets is a fairly simple process, as long as you find the right method for you. The problem most glazing methods have is that they turn the lighter colors darker than desired; the method we utilize, however, is one of the best and especially suited for painted light color cabinets. It gives the glaze a slight tint. While preserving it in the profiles and helps create a unique vintage distressed look. The good news is that this method works equally well on older. As well as brand new cabinets. Which makes it ideal if you’re looking to give your kitchen a facelift!      ​See our page on High Gloss.



How to Glaze Cabinets Wood Prep 

     You start by prepping the wood for paint by sanding down to a smooth finish, if you’re refinishing than remove the old stain and varnish then sand. You don’t need to use any finer than 220 grit sandpaper. Apply two to three coats of paint and sand between coats.  You can use glazing or stain, if using stain and you want to extend the use time. You can thin the stain. This will give a little more time when applying.


One the cabinets shown we used an antique white. Once finished and the paint is cured, spray on the high gloss before you apply the glazing. The high gloss will seal the paint and keep the glazing from penetrating and turning the paint to dark. After the lacquer has cured you will start to apply the glaze.




 How to Glaze Cabinets

When glazing cabinets we never glaze the back side of the doors and to keep the glazing from running on the back we tape it off. This makes for a cleaner looking cabinet door when you open them. Use a sponge applicator to apply the glazing, the sponge makes it easier to get in the profiles. Dip the sponge and do the profiles first then do the flat surface. This keeps from putting excesses on the flat surface that you will just have to wipe off. Putting glazing on the flat surface is to tint them a little. Do not glaze the entire door at one time. The longer the glazing stays on the darker the final finish will be so do small sections at a time.






Just remember the karate kid “wipe on wipe off”. As your wiping the glazing off you can decide how much or how dark you want them to look. If you want the glazing dark in the profiles the use a cheap brown paper towels. Or if you want the glazing light in the profiles then use a soft more absorbent paper towel.  When finished let it dry overnight. When drying you may see the stain or glazing creeping onto the flat surface. This is OK and will wipe off later. The creep does not penetrate the lacquer.




After dried, use fine steel wool and lightly go over the cabinets this helps clean them up and if you want to lighten the glazing in the profiles you can do it at this time. Make sure before you use the #0000 steel wool. That the glazing is completely dry or it will embed and will give it a dirty look. All that is left is to wipe down and seal with deft semi gloss.





Glazing looks great on this style of cabinets. Add a black granite top and a copper tea pot,  you have a country kitchen.  The best part about this finish is the more you use it the better it looks. Great if you have children around.









     we never glaze the face frames but you can if you like. We feel it looks cleaner this way and we always take the doors off the cabinets before we glaze.
If you can’t glaze all the cabinets at one time. And need to do a few this week then a few next. You may see a color difference between the ones you done first. This is because they cure over time and when you’re finished, they should all look the same.
When glazing cabinets that have been painted or of light color. We found this method works the best and is the only method we use on painted cabinets. This will also give you that old antique finish that so many people look for. If you want more of a worn look. Just sand a few edges to the wood before you apply the lacquer.