I would like to repaint our kitchen. The majority of the kitchen cabinets were replaced by my DH's mom about 10 years ago. At that time she refused to let one set of cabinets, over the bar, be replaced because they were built by hand by her late husband. If I repaint the kitchen, these handmade cabinets would definitely be part of the paint job. Problem is, they are all high over my head (short woman in a house built by and for 6 footers ), are part of a load bearing wall, so can't be taken down easily and are varnished. The varnish was put on back in the early 70s when the house was built and they haven't been redone since. I would wear my arms out trying to sand the varnish off with the cabinets in place. My questions is, can I use a paint that has a primer mixed in - like Kilz paint to cover over the varnish or prime first then paint, or would they absolutely have to be sanded down first?