"You're not trying to get down to the bare wood," says Petersik."You just want to take the surface from glossy to matte."Vacuum up any debris before you even think of dipping that brush in paint.So I was so excited when she said she wanted to paint her cabinets white!

Because what once was hung up will need to go back in the same place, it's worth using numbered labels to help you remember where everything goes.

A piece of masking tape stuck to the back of each piece will do just fine.

"You get a smoother finish with a good paint," she says.

Most kitchens need less than two gallons, so the splurge isn't going to break the budget (plus you're skipping hiring a pro, so treat your amateur skills to the best, easiest-to-use materials). Virginia at Live Love DIY follows her brush strokes with a foam roller to smooth things out.

It seems like a no-brainer project, but this undertaking actually has many potential pitfalls.

Avoid these blunders to end up with cabinets you can't wait to show off: Painted cabinets look lovely, but they aren't going to look totally smooth.

Just a few pieces of dust can ruin the look: "You'll get a gritty finish and it'll look like you painted over sand," says Fahrbach.

"To fix it, you'll have to sand it and repaint it all over again."It's tempting to skip this step, but consider this: "Your finished kitchen could look amazing then, three weeks or three months later, knots in the wood can start to bleed through your paint," warns Petersik.

But for cabinets, it's important you get it right the first time: "This project is easy but it's not the kind of job you're going to want to redo any time soon if you don't like the color," says Petersik.