Whitewash is a stain that’s similar to paint. It is wiped on just like stain, but leaves a large amount of solids on the surface of the wood. It is then sprayed with lacquer to seal and complete the cabinet. To refinish whitewashed cabinets, the lacquer has to be eliminated first. Then they may be sanded down to bare wood. The cabinets can then be refinished any color you would like. You ought to use a chemical stripper to expedite lacquer removal.
Remove all doors and drawers from the cabinets and place them on sawhorses. Use a Phillips screwdriver to remove the hinges from the doorways. Spread a drop cloth under all of cabinets, doors and drawers.
Place rubber gloves. Open a can of stripper. Use a paint brush to coat the surface of one cabinet, drawer and door at a time. Wait 15 minutes to the lacquer to soften. Use a putty knife to scrape off soft lacquer. Let it drop off on the drop cloth. Do each of the cabinets, doors and drawers where there’s whitewash stain.
Sand the surface of the cabinets, doors and drawers with 100-grit sandpaper attached to your hand block or oscillating sander until smooth.
Open a fresh can of stain. Use a sponge to apply the new stain to the cabinets, doors and drawers one at a time and wipe off immediately with a soft cloth. Wait 30 minutes for the stain to dry.
Spray the cabinets, doors and drawers with one light coat of aerosol lacquer. Wait 30 minutes to the lacquer to dry. Sand the cabinets, doors and drawers by hand with a folded piece of 180-grit sandpaper. Don’t wipe off the whitish lacquer dust.
Spray another coating of lacquer on the doors, drawers and cabinets. Allow the lacquer dry overnight before installing the doors and drawers.