Kitchen: Cabinets

White Cabinets in a Wood KitchenChoosing kitchen cabinets can be overwhelming considering the vast selection of cabinets available. It helps to start with a design idea or two in mind of what the outcome of the kitchen will be in order to select cabinets.

Types of Cabinets

Kitchen cabinets vary in respect to door styles. Door styles decorate and accent the cabinets which improve the overall look of the kitchen. The four ways that door styles differ are overlay, wood types, design and finish.

Overlays can make a dramatic change to the cabinet door style. This key design facet is the way the door rests on the face of the cabinet. Standard and full are the two types of overlays.

The type of wood used for the door style is also a key element in creating the ideal cabinet. Each different type of wood has options for colors and finishes, depending on how it absorbs glazes as well as stains. The common wood types are cherry, maple, oak, birch, pine and hickory. Each wood has its own unique qualities and has different grain, hardness and colors.

Door design is a personal preference and there are hundreds of styles to choose from. Some of the more popular styles include: slab, recessed panel, raised panel, shaker, cape cod and arch. Further enhancements to the door design may also include replacement of wood panels with some decorative glass and the addition of in-cabinet lighting to display some kitchen pieces.

The finish of the cabinet doors is where homeowners can showcase their style. Some common finishes are: wood tone, color cast, and glaze. Techniques such as heir looming and distressing are other ways to further enhance the finish of cabinet doors.

Current Trends in Cabinets

One current trend in kitchen cabinets is “light and bright”. Cabinets done in heavy and dark cherry are declining in use whereas light to medium cabinets are considered more modern. In fact, white cabinets are a very popular choice. There has also been an interest in oak, walnut and birch cabinetry, which are much lighter than cherry wood. Bamboo is gaining some popularity for kitchen cabinets as well for those who are using a “green” design.

Another trend for cabinets is the use of drawers. In the past, cupboards were the main cabinets in a kitchen. Now cupboards are being replaced with drawers. Drawers are perfect for storing pots and pans, some small appliances as well as the traditional kitchen accessories – like utensils, linens etc. The ease of drawers as well as the fact they pull out are making them popular choices in kitchen cabinetry.

Pricing of Cabinets

As there is such a variation in cabinet styles, it’s easy to understand the variation in price as well. Cabinets that are painted MDF with little detail will be much less inexpensive than those made of solid wood with intricate detail. Cherry wood is one of the most expensive types of wood cabinet with maple being a much less expensive choice. As there are so many options of cabinets to choose from, it is definitely possible to choose cabinets that fit every design and budget.


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