Hallway Built In Makeover

If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen one of my stories talking about painting the built in cabinets at the end of our hallway.

The hallway was so stark white and lacked any kind of character. I just felt it needed some pizzaz, something to make it more me and break up some of the whiteness.


I have been on a big dark blue and gold obsession. I have painted the outside of our house blue, guest bath blue with champagne accents and now the built in. Hey at least it all coordinates right?

I thought this would be a quick weekend project but I should have known that’s never the case when your in an older “loved” home. Overall it was a pretty easy and inexpensive project and I love the way it turned out.

Supplies needed:

Paint color– We used a Valspar Signature Satin Finish Oops Paint for $9 so I don’t have a color name but it’s a grayish dark blue. I recommend actually using a gloss to help cut down on the sanding and polyurethaning later.

Angled Paint Brush-Do yourself a favor and spend the extra money on a high quality paint brush, just clean and care for it and you won’t regret it!

Extra Fine sand paper– grade 220. I used an electric Sander but hand sanding works just fine.

Polyurethane– I tried spray polyurethane for the first time, I personally hated it and got such bad streaks that I had to start the project over. I ended up using my tried and true minwax fast drying clear satin Polyurethane.

Sponge Brush– for applying polyurethane.

Hardware– found these on amazon and they fit perfectly with my vision.


1. Remove all drawers and doors

2. Tape off around the wall

3. Sand everything down then dust off

3. Paint built in trim, doors and drawers.

Tip: If paint is drying too fast or your getting bad brush streaks, add Floetrol to paint. Follow directions on bottle.

4. After paint has dried, brush on one layer of polyurethane with a sponge brush. Let dry completely.

5. Very carefully lightly sand everything, careful to not scratch paint.

6. Add another polyurethane coat.

Repeat sanding and Polyurethaning until everything is nice and coated so it won’t scratch. If your using a gloss you may only need only a few coats of polyurethane. It personally took 4 coats for us.

Tip: if you do scratch a small spot- just use a small art brush to lightly paint back in.

6. Put doors back on built in.

we unexpectedly had to change all the hinges because the screws were stripped and had been painted over so many times we had to pry them off. Our built in was handmade by a previous owner so finding the right kind of hinges that fit was tough but Kyle finally found a winner at Home Depot.

7. Add Hardware- The hardware I got off Amazon, you just cut the screws they come with to length you need, super easy.

8. Step back and look at what you accomplished! Pat yourself of the back your done.

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