September 02, 2019

HOW TO CHOOSE KITCHEN CABINETS

How to choose kitchen cabinets

Updated June 16, 2020

What makes cabinets an important part of your kitchen? Is it their functionality? Their aesthetic appeal? As the primary feature of your kitchen, cabinets play a starring role in both the design and utility of space. So, whatever your reasons are for upgrading your cabinets, you can expect this remodeling project to enhance the entire design of your kitchen and overall feel for your entire home.

When it's time to remodel or take on your next project, it helps to know how to choose kitchen cabinets, so you get the best results for your kitchen. Get the perfect kitchen cabinets with help from this guide.

CONSIDER KITCHEN CABINET DOOR STYLES

Your cabinet doors and drawer fronts will have the most impact on your kitchen design. As you redesign your space, kitchen cabinet door styles should be your first consideration. Having a cabinet door type in mind will help guide other decisions, including the color of your cabinets and what hardware and accents you use.

Your kitchen cabinet options when it comes to door and drawer front designs are vast. At Cabinet Doors 'N' More, we offer a wide range of custom replacement cabinet doors to suit a variety of tastes and kitchen styling. Some of our most popular kitchen cabinet door styles include:

 

  • Shaker cabinet doors: The shaker style creates perfect kitchen cabinets for modern and classic designs. With a recessed center panel and sleek lines, shaker cabinet doors have a subtle and popular detail that looks stunning in almost any kitchen. Add more lines and texture with a beadboard shaker cabinet door.
  • Raised-panel cabinet doors: Available in square, arch and cathedral styles, raised-panel cabinet doors feature a framework around a floating panel in the center. The result is a classic design that adds dimension to traditional kitchens.
  • Recessed-panel cabinet doors: Like the shaker style, recessed panel cabinet doors often have a square recessed panel. They may have beveled edges or details around the panel for a more elaborate design than a shaker cabinet. Depending on the center panel, recessed panel cabinet doors are a stylish choice for modern or traditional kitchens.
  • Slab cabinet doorsThe smooth finish of slab cabinet doors makes them simple and easy to clean. Their solid construction provides a minimalist style that's ideal for modern and contemporary kitchen designs. You can enhance slab cabinet doors with hardware that suits your space to add dimension and texture.
  • Mullion cabinet doorsAlso known as glass-paneled cabinet doorsmullion cabinet doors showcase dishware with one, four or six glass panes. With their squared slots for glass, mullion cabinet doors are functional for both contemporary or classic kitchens. The glass you choose can create either a subtle accent or a bold statement in your cabinetry.

 These cabinet door options are timeless, and you can customize them with different paints or stains, evolving with your interior décor as it changes with trends and your tastes. Be sure to also coordinate your new kitchen cabinet doors with our drawer fronts that come in these styles: 

 For a seamless design, match the drawer fronts to your cabinet doors. If you'd like contrast, use different paint colors or stains to add dimension and an impressive feature to your kitchen, rather than mixing and matching drawer front and cabinet door styles.

HOW TO CHOOSE KITCHEN CABINET COLORS

replacement kitchen cabinet doors

The best way to choose kitchen cabinet colors is to consider the rest of your room and your tastes. Kitchen cabinets are often a neutral color or a stained wood tone for timeless, versatile results, so you have plenty of color options to consider. As you decide on your kitchen cabinets' colors, you could select:

 

  • Lighter colors to make a smaller kitchen feel more open.
  • Darker colors to make a kitchen look traditional or cozy.
  • Colors that complement your walls and backsplash to create a subtle design.
  • Colors that stand out from the room to make your cabinets a statement.

With those general color ideas in mind for your kitchen cabinets, a few extra considerations will help guide the color selection process.

1. USE OTHER ELEMENTS OF YOUR KITCHEN

You can play with the color of your cabinets, but many homeowners prefer to add color with other elements. Use the walls, backsplash, countertops, hardware and various components of your kitchen to add color. If you know what accent colors you'll have in your kitchen or are going with the existing flooring, wall and backsplash color, it may be easier to choose your cabinet color.

Pick a shade from your backsplash or flooring and use that in your cabinetry. Whether you go with a subtle gray tone from a tile in your backsplash or a warm wood tone from your flooring, you'll get a cohesive look in your kitchen. You want the colors to complement each other, not clash or precisely match, so add in contrast with your cabinet hardware and small features to break up the colors in your kitchen.

 

2. CONSIDER THE STYLE YOU WANT FOR YOUR KITCHEN

The color you choose for your kitchen cabinets also depends on the style of your kitchen. The style of cabinet doors and drawers you choose will influence this, along with other accents in your space. Kitchens come in a wide variety of designs, so you may have or want something like the following: 

  • Contemporary: If you have a more modern design, white is a popular choice. You can also choose gray or black if you have a larger space or don't mind a darker look. Neutrals will complement the sleek accents and straight lines of your modern cabinets.
  • Industrial: Often a subset of contemporary design, industrial combines wood and metal elements for a rugged feel. Industrial kitchens often have slab cabinet doors in dark wood tones, suitable for larger spaces.
  • Classic: Classic and traditional kitchens often suit a natural wood color, though white is also becoming a common choice because it is more versatile and timeless. Use raised panel cabinets in your preferred color to emphasize a traditional design.
  • Charming: French country and farmhouse-style kitchens give an attractive feel to your home. Charming kitchens are a type of classic design, so go with white, cream or light gray colors and raised panel cabinets to suit the style.
  • Unique: Want a unique kitchen? Consider using color in your cabinets. Muted blue or green tones complement the simple cabinet styles of shaker doors and drawers. Slab cabinets can also give a unique look to your kitchen, especially with eclectic hardware and accents.

 If you'd like to create contrast with different colors on your upper and lower cabinets, ground the room with a darker color on the bottom and use white or a light shade on the upper cabinets. A lighter color will draw the eyes up, making your kitchen feel taller and lighter. With two different cabinet colors, the type of cabinet you choose will be the determining factor for your kitchen's style.

3. MATCH EXISTING CABINETS

cabinet door replacement

You may already have cabinets in your kitchen with a color you like. In that case, you could stain or paint your new kitchen cabinet doors and drawer fronts to match. At Cabinet Doors 'N' More, our cabinet doors and drawer fronts come unfinished, which means we don't stain them. You're free to match them to your existing cabinets or go in a new direction with your color choice. Choose paint-grade hard maple and medium-density fiberboard wood species with a white primer option to make painting your doors a step easier.

 

NEW KITCHEN CABINETS VS. NEW CABINET DOORS AND DRAWERS

When remodeling your kitchen, you have to choose between new kitchen cabinets or new doors and drawer fronts. In other words, you're looking at refacing versus replacing your cabinets: 

  • Replacing your cabinets involves getting new cabinet frames, interiors, floors, side panels, shelves and doors.
  • Refacing your cabinets involves getting new cabinet doors and drawer fronts to refresh the appearance of your cabinets.

 

PROS AND CONS OF REPLACING VS. REFACING CABINETS

Replacing or refacing your cabinets will come with various pros and cons for your kitchen remodel. What you choose can impact the following: 

  • Installation: Replacing cabinets entirely requires experienced professionals. Installers must level your new cabinets and frames for the best results. With drawers and doors from Cabinet Doors 'N' More, you can choose pre-bored options for hinges and hardware for easier installation. Get cabinet installation tips to help guide you through the process.
  • Cost: Replacing cabinets entails professional help and an entirely new set of cabinetry and drawers. With refacing, you save on costs by keeping your existing cabinetry and giving it an update. If you install your cabinet doors and drawer fronts yourself, you'll also save on labor costs.
  • Convenience: Replacing cabinets involves dismantling and removing your current cabinetry, which can impact your countertops and backsplash. Conveniently, refacing your cabinets leaves everything in place and only requires a swap of the doors and drawers.

The ordering process may also be easier for refacing your cabinetry, rather than replacing everything. When replacing your cabinets, you could need blueprints or digital mockups of your kitchen, along with specific measurements for the height, width and depth of your cabinets and drawers. You'll then need dimensions for your cabinet drawers and drawer fronts.

With a cabinet refacing project, you'll need fewer dimensions. You'll find more information in our measuring guide, but in general, you'll only need to measure the drawers and door fronts. Measure the inside edges of your cabinet doors to get the height and width, and add an inch or more for overlay, depending on the framing of your cabinets. For drawers, open the drawer and measure the height and width of the edges on the front.

HOW TO CHOOSE BETWEEN REPLACING AND REFACING CABINETS

While replacing your kitchen cabinets may be the right choice if you want a new layout, the more straightforward option will be using your existing floor plan and refacing your doors and drawers. If you don't have any issues with your design or the construction of your cabinets and your cabinets and flooring are level, you can use refacing to get the perfect kitchen cabinets.

Refacing cabinets is ideal for cabinet doors and drawers that need a refresh. If you want to change or enhance the look of your kitchen, swapping cabinet doors and drawers for new pieces can give your space the look and feel of new kitchen cabinets without a total overhaul.

Over time, you may notice that some components of your cabinetry aren't in good shape. In that case, you don't need to replace your cabinets entirely. If you have drawer boxes or cabinet shelves you need to replace, get those and your new cabinet fronts from Cabinet Doors 'N' More instead of replacement cabinets.

 

KITCHEN CABINET CHOICE

Choosing a cabinet type can help you narrow down your options when it comes to choosing new kitchen cabinets, saving you time and money as you begin your project. While you may have already decided on a style and color for your cabinets, you still have to choose the type of cabinet build you'd like. You have three options for kitchen cabinets:

 

  • Stock cabinets
  • Semi-custom cabinets
  • Custom cabinets

Your choice depends on your existing kitchen cabinet styles or the style and layout you'd like to have. Consider kitchen layouts like the G-, L- or U-shape and single or galley kitchens.

The cabinet styles and layouts you choose will also depend on the height of your ceilings, how tall you want your cabinets to be, how many corner cabinets you need and other considerations. From there, you'll make your kitchen cabinet choices based on how standard or unique your kitchen is with these options:

 

1. STOCK CABINETS

Stock cabinets are the most affordable cabinet style. These options come either fully assembled or ready to put together, making them well-suited for DIY projects. You'll find stock cabinets at home improvement stores with basic cabinet door and drawer styling. With particleboard cabinet sides and laminate and wood veneers for the door and drawer fronts, the materials used in stock cabinets often help keep the cost low.

While stock cabinets are useful for DIYers and those on a tighter budget, they aren't a good fit for all kitchens. Stock cabinets only come in standard sizes with 30-inch wall cabinet heights. If you wanted anything taller or have a unique layout to accommodate, you may not find stock cabinets that work for you. If you have stock cabinets but would like to reface them and adapt them to your kitchen and style, consider custom cabinet doors and drawer fronts.

2. SEMI-CUSTOM CABINETS

slab kitchen cabinet doors

If you are looking for a happy-medium design option, semi-custom cabinets are the most popular. These affordable units are available in a pick-and-choose design format, and dealers can custom-size them to your kitchen for the perfect fit. Semi-custom cabinets combine the convenience of stock and the beauty of custom options.

Semi-custom cabinets often require professional installation, which could create a higher cost for your cabinetry project. But they do come fully assembled, which can save a bit on labor time and costs. With a multitude of cabinet styles and finishes to select from, you'll find a beautiful design that suits your kitchen. Semi-custom cabinets can also come with crown moldings and cabinet hardware to enhance the style of your cabinetry.

Like stock cabinets, semi-custom cabinets can limit you on size, though they come in 36- and 42-inch wall cabinet heights and sometimes offer 3-inch size increments to help customize your kitchen. Find semi-custom cabinets at home improvement stores or local kitchen dealers with particleboard or plywood sides. Enhance semi-custom cabinets with refacing options for your doors and drawer fronts.

3. CUSTOM CABINETS

As a high-end product, custom cabinets are the most expensive choice. With computer designs and blueprints, professionals create and install your custom kitchen cabinets, which does create a longer installation timeline. Because custom kitchen cabinets have made-to-order cabinet boxes, you can get options for any size and shape room.

Custom cabinets often come with 1/2-inch to 3/4-inch plywood sides and solid wood doors and drawer fronts. Your custom cabinets will come in a variety of paints, stains and glazes to consider. With custom cabinets, there are also an array of optional custom details you can include in your kitchen design, including: 

  • Handcrafted accessories and ornamentation
  • Pull-out trash containers
  • Roll-out shelves
  • Soft-close cabinet doors and drawer boxes

Custom cabinets are only available through kitchen cabinet dealers or showrooms, but they could be the right choice for you if you want to select the size, shape, height, width, depth and finish of your cabinets. If you want the look of custom cabinetry without a total replacement, get custom cabinet doors and drawer fronts from Cabinet Doors 'N' More.

REVAMP YOUR KITCHEN WITH CABINET DOORS 'N' MORE

When it's time to remodel your kitchen, turn to Cabinet Doors 'N' More. Order one cabinet for a small-scale fix or replace various components of your cabinetry for a dramatic change. Whatever you need, we have it. And when you buy $750 or more in our cabinet doors, drawers, drawer boxes or accessories, you'll get 10% off your entire order at checkout.

Check out our quality cabinet doorsdrawer frontsdrawer boxes and accessories for your next project from Cabinet Doors 'N' More. Use our handy guide to start the easy-to-use ordering process for your cabinets today!

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