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Here’s a perfect way to get frustrated:  give me a task that requires at least three hands to do properly, and provide me with only two. This is exactly the scenario of what hanging the upper cabinet doors has been like.

When I reattached the bottom cabinet doors, I had to get creative with support in lieu of a third arm to hold the door (while my two hands were occupied holding & screwing in the hinge). A little funny, but still – worked pretty well.

The full steps are pretty much the same as I did on the lower cabinets – using the old hinges as a guide, pre-drilling holes, and screwing in the newly painted door & hinge.

Only now that I’m up another five feet in the air, things are considerably more difficult. The ladder isn’t quite right to provide the extra support to keep the door level (in that it’s both the wrong height and the rough surface will scratch the painted door). So I’m having to do an awkward hold/drill/screw maneuver with each hinge that has about a 25% success rate thus far. It’s sloooooow. Which also means that this entire process is causing every known obscenity I’ve ever heard from South Park to spill out of my mouth in one long, confusing, string. Good thing there’s just Charlie around to give me that look.

Yep… that’s the one.

Note to all of you new DIYers out there:  go ahead and buy magnetic drill bits. It saves your sanity. I have yet to do this, and have struggled through the first three doors. By the time this project is over, I will most certainly break down and go buy even more bits (I have at least three sets at this point, but none of them are magnetized).

Oh good, and now my cabinet door is dirty. @#$%&!

But, eventually, these assholes will be up and hanging in their rightful place (that’s right, these doors are total jerks and doing this to me deliberately). Even if it means I have to drink myself into a better mood afterward.

Any of you have a similar inanimate offender in your household?

And of course, it’s link up time. Looking forward to seeing your kitchen progress, and don’t forget to head over to Carrie’s blog to check out her progress too!

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  1. Oh my goodness! You are so funny! I love the look Charlie gave you! I have struggled to re-hang cabinet doors in my kitchen by myself as well. The drinking to a better mood is a great idea!

  2. As a kid my Dad taught me that you can magnatize a flat head screwdriver by rubbing it back and forth on a strong magnet, I’ve never tried it with screwdriver bits but I imagine that it would work.

  3. We did all of our kitchen ourselves except this part and some plumbing upgrades! You’re making me very glad that we did! Our kitchen also have very similar feels btw! Thanks for hosting the linkup!

  4. Offender–as in offender of bad words–then yes. I may get that look from my daughter. Bad mom! I really am for this occasional problem but that is for another blog. You have friends! Can’t you call someone to help??? I mean that is literally impossible what you are (attempting) to do and taking up the time you do not have! I’m a real help, ha? It looks great up and I can’t wait to see them all done. Call a friend please.

    1. Oh, I meant inanimate object offender – the kind that lead to cursing, ha! But as for friends, the issue with that is planning on when they come by (and I’m the type that will just do this at random points as I see fit during the day or night). So it’s just as hard to plan around that as it is to find a way to get it done by myself. Family is the same way!

      1. Yes, it is usually the (any) inanimate object offender that leads to the animate offender! I get it regarding the help. I should have known by now how you operate (ie dress and heels still on from work and start DIY’ing). Silly me!

  5. is it possible for you to screw the hinge on the door, and then the door onto the cabinet? Not sure if that would work, but it would be, I think, easier than trying to hold up the heavy door and a drill…

    1. I considered it, but in order to screw everything in level, I’ve been cautious to try it that way. I also have to match up to the existing holes in the doors, so screwing those in first seemed like that was the only way to ensure that all of the holes lined up.

      1. Perhaps if you use the two longer holes in your hinges would help. I replaced my hardware with a similar setup and I found that attaching the hinges to the cabinets last through those long holes worked great. Once the screws were mostly in you can slide the doors up or down a little to level things up.

  6. You can also get connectors that will magnetize your bits…A piece that snaps into your drill chuck and then you put your bits into it. I guess it would depend on your type of drill bits (they would have to fit universally into the connector), but it could save you from buying a whole new set of bits. It just ends up making the overall bit assembly longer, which isn’t ideal sometimes. But as a bonus, the bits seem to stay magnetized all on their own for a while after using the connector with them. So someone else’s suggestion of manually magnetizing your bits should work also!! :)

  7. OMG so funny!
    For me, it’s doorknobs and deadbolts.
    I can’t get the screw to go into the hole on the other piece. So frustrating!

  8. I totally get you on the cabinet thing. we did it with two people and it was still a headache so I can only imagine. Girl power!! And I love Charlie’s look- too cute! I get that look from the cats mainly lol

  9. Blame Canada?!?

    I can say that ’cause I’m Canadian, eh… ;-)

    Been there, done that… only difference is I ended up in a vile tantrum with a few smashed doors… No good.

    Just saying, of course…

  10. This is the part where doing projects solo is SO FRUSTRATING. I hung all the cabinet doors myself (trying to surprise husband), and they all need to be adjusted now… ! I feel your pain.

  11. Question. My cabinets are bad too; though I’m looking to re-stain. Can you stain over the products you used earlier to degrease or only paint. I have a hard time convincing my husband to let me do projects. Years ago he ( a cabinet/counter top guy) had to make replacement doors for my bathroom cabinets after I tried stripping them. I think there is still some orange under the upper cabinet. LOL

    1. I don’t think so. A degreaser/deglosser only works to remove grease and cut down the sheen so that paint can stick; it doesn’t really permeate the existing poly or stain like a stripping agent would. BUT, you may want to try Minwax Polyshades (I’d only go with darker finishes if you’re covering over existing stain). You’d still have to sand everything, THEN degloss it, then try the stain (couple coats to let it build up). But I’ve heard that others have had good results with that product when it comes to covering over a stain color that they don’t like.

  12. Sarah, that’s hilarious! You remind me of my dad when I was a kid. He would get so mad at whatever her was working on whether it was the car or the air conditioner. I had no interest in learning what he was doing so I just tried to stay out of his way. And occasionally hand him a screwdriver.

  13. Too bad your dog doesn’t have opposing thumbs. Then he’d be able to help hold the doors.

    When I hung some cabinet doors by myself, I used a magnetized screwdriver to get the screws started. I had them sitting on the sticky side of painters tape to keep them from rolling around. It made it all slightly easier. With an emphasis on “slightly”.

  14. I have to say you’re quite creative with acquiring the “extra hands” for your projects.

  15. Even I tried something like this a while back and believe me I was frustrated (because I only have 2 hands and needed more) but yeah eventually it got completed, courtesy of some creativity. Great work Sarah keep up.