Chicken Wire Cabinet Door Makeover

Chicken wire cabinet
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  • 01 of 04

    Cabinet Door Makeover with Chicken Wire Panels

    cabinet doors with chicken wire panels
    Cabinet doors with chicken wire panels, perfect for displaying favorite china. Photo &copy Wayne Shielly

    Memphis Interior Decorator Wayne Shielly doesn’t believe in gutting perfectly good kitchens for the latest trend. He does believe in tweaking, though, and he’s certainly done plenty of that in his builder’s standard kitchen. One of his favorite projects was a cabinet door makeover, where he replaced the wood panels in his upper cabinet doors with chicken wire.

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  • 02 of 04

    What You'll Need

    corner cabinet with peeling paint
    The paint may be peeling on this old corner cabinet from the flea market, but the lines are good. Photo &copy Leah French

    Wayne replaced the panels on fitted kitchen cabinets, but you can try this project on any flea market furniture with panel doors. This shabby corner cupboard is a perfect candidate.

    In addition to your cabinet, you'll need:

    • Chicken wire
    • Staple gun and staples
    • Drill and appropriate bits
    • Jigsaw
    • Wire cutters or heavy-duty scissors
    • Light kit (optional)
    • Screwdriver
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  • 03 of 04


    outside and inside of cabinet doors
    From the outside of the doors, you'd never know this was a simple DIY project. Photo &copy Wayne Shielly
    1. Remove your cabinet doors from the cabinet. On most hinges, you'll need a screwdriver.
    2. Drill a pilot hole for the jigsaw on the edge of the panel, as close to the frame as you can get without damaging it.
    3. Place your cabinet door outside up, so you can follow the shape of the panel.
    4. Using the pilot hole to start, cut out your panel with the jigsaw, following the lines of the panel. If you don't have a lot of jigsaw experience, try some practice cutting on a scrap before you put the saw to...MORE your cabinet door.
    5. Using the cut-out panel as a pattern, cut your chicken wire. Make it about 1.5 inches larger than the opening, or as large as the frame will allow if that's too big.
    6. Use a staple gun to attach the chicken wire panel to the cabinet door frame. Don't skimp on staples. Your panels need to be firmly attached to the frame.
    7. Add string lights or a light strip. Wayne chose inexpensive hardware store plug-in light strips to the cabinets, to really highlight his new exposed cabinet interiors. Follow the installation instructions on your light kit, but be prepared to drill a small hole through each shelf for the wire. It needn't be a large hole if you choose a light kit with a plug that attaches to the wire after installation.
    8. Reattach the cabinet doors to the cabinets.
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  • 04 of 04

    The Result

    pink and white china in wire cabinets
    In this cabinet, Wayne displays part of his huge collection of Old Britain Castles dinnerware by Johnson Brothers. Photo &copy Wayne Shielly

    Enjoy your new chicken wire cabinet panels. Play with different arrangements of dishes or decorative objects, and show off your new display space to its best advantage.

    For more of Wayne Shielly's house: