Selecting Kitchen Cabinets
By: Danny Lipford
Watch this video on kitchen cabinets and design to find out about:
- Kitchen Cabinet Options: The different kitchen cabinet options available, from manufactured to custom cabinetry.
- Kitchen Design: Find kitchen design tips to give your kitchen personality from kitchen designer Cheryl Kees Clendenon by adding unique touches to your kitchen, such as glass door display cabinets, plate racks, small cubby drawers, and full extension drawer slides.
- How to Choose Quality Kitchen Cabinets (video)
- Choosing Kitchen Countertops (video)
- Buying Kitchen Cabinets on a Budget (video)
Danny Lipford: Now, kitchen renovation more so than any other renovation to your home requires some real advanced planning, thinking about how you want the kitchen to lay out, and how you want it to look. That means a lot of tough decisions have to be made, and many of those decisions revolve around the selection of the cabinets.
The first one you will face is whether they’ll be manufactured or custom cabinets, as the name implies custom cabinets are made specifically for your kitchen which can be an advantage if the layout or style that you want is really unique. However, in recent years major cabinet manufacturers have diversified their product lines to satisfy almost any taste or any layout requirements.
Cost is one of the key differences because cabinet making is a very labor intensive business. And you’ll pay more for custom cabinets in an area with high labor cost but they may prove to be a bargain in an area with lower wages. There may also be some differences in the materials used.
Custom cabinet shops tend to use primarily solid wood and plywood while large manufacturers may rely on composite materials with wood veneers for all but their highest end products. In either case you can get quality cabinets if you do your homework but you still have to decide on what they’ll look like.
Cheryl Kees Clendenon: What I like to say in terms of cabinetry we have to suit the needs of the kitchen, however, something like this for example, we want to have a little bit of sis-boom-bah, a little bit of zip-a-dee-doo-dah, something that gives the kitchen a uniqueness. Because everybody wants to have something that’s unique, no one wants to go into a kitchen, whether they know it ahead of time or not, and see a wall of cabinets.
And that’s the mistake that a lot of people will make. They think every square inch has to be cabinetry, closed cabinetry with doors, but utilizing something like this with glass cabinets with a plate rack with these little bitty drawers. You’d be surprised how useful these can be, these little drawers like this. But aside from the usefulness it gives the kitchen personality and that’s something that’s really important.
There are things like this a full extension drawer that revolutionized the cabinetry industry when people started doing this because now you can bring your drawer all the way out and get full use of that space. The same with the big deep drawers you can put pots and pans in there you can divide them up, I can make even a small galley kitchen very efficient by how you utilize the cabinetry.
So when a client comes in and they so well you know, I basically like the footprint of the kitchen that we have right now, but it just doesn’t work well. Sometimes that’s a layout in the way that people are moving, sometimes it’s where the cabinets are allocated. A lot of times you’ll see a soffit going across the top with no duct, no lights or anything in it, in an eight-foot ceiling kitchen.
So we want to take that and take that extra shelf, even if you don’t use that shelf day to day, you can’t get to it, it’s where you’re Christmas dishes are stored or your holiday things, things like that. You can get away with less upper cabinets than people actually think they can. But when they come see me and I propose a hood or doing something like this or something that’s, they think I don’t know if that’s really useful.
I don’t want to be able to see my dishes or what have you, but if they have this space suiting the rest of the kitchen, then something like this is what gives their kitchen personality. And let’s face it that’s what everybody wants. Every client wants a kitchen that has their distinct stamp of personality and attitude in it. It’s just not all about function, it’s all about looks as well.