Shopping For New Kitchen Cabinets:

There are many different kitchen cabinet manufactures available in today’s market; there are always new and innovative ideas from small and large businesses. [kitchen cabinet considerations] Some businesses pride on their variety of selection while others pride in the quality of their handmade cabinetry.  Since there are so many different manufactures, how do you determine who can offer the best option for your needs?
The two main main things that separate kitchen cabinet manufacturers from one another is the craftsmanship and the materials.  Pay attention to the detail used where different pieces of the cabinets are held together; some use small nails and glue while others use dove tail joints and glue.  Observe the cabinets to see if there are changes in materials in places that may not be clearly visible, this is a key sign that the cabinets may not be entirely made from solid wood or the specified material, (important to have consistency with materials for expansion and contraction).
In today’s market there are several different cabinet materials to choose from and three basic constructions to look for.  The most basic cabinet is particle board with a colored laminate or vinyl wood.  A particle board construction is generally the least expensive type of material and is usually found at large box stores requiring self assembly at home.  Particle board should never be used in a renovation, it is ideal for cheap apartment kitchens; unlike other types of wood, particle board construction will not contract after expanding when exposed to high humidity.  The other types of cabinet constructions are plywood with vinyl wood and hardwood.  Plywood construction is less expensive than hardwood and will expand and contract the same.  Since plywood is less expensive it does not have the exact look and feel of a hardwood construction and can look similar to particle board construction.

There are different type of cabinet assemblies with cabinet doors, each cabinet door will give a different character or look to the kitchen; there are recessed or inset cabinet doors, frameless cabinets and overlay cabinet doors.  Recessed or inset cabinet doors sit inside of the frame of the cabinet.  Recessed cabinet doors tend to be more expensive due to higher level of required skilled labor, but will give a kitchen a clean look.  Frameless cabinets are cabinet doors overlapping the frame in between the cabinets, this is usually a more expensive option with no increase in quality from an overlay cabinet door assembly.  Choosing between framed and overlay cabinets is best left to the look and feel of the look of the doors and hardware; there is no right or wrong option to modernizing your kitchen.

kraftmaid cabinets natural and warm styleIt can be difficult deciding to spend your money on kitchen cabinet doors verses spending money on hardware.  Sometimes a simple blank cabinet door with a nice hardware knob can look great.  The more molding patterns in a door, nicer the door will look but will take away from the appearance of the hardware.  When you have nice cabinet doors, less money can be spent on door knobs.  Purchasing nice hardware with simple cabinets may not be necessarily a more cost effective approach when looking at complete cabinet assemblies.  It is important to have an idea of a kitchen style before choosing either route.

If you see a cabinet you like but not in the color you want, do not hesitate to consider having your cabinets professionally painted.  It is increasingly popular for cabinet installers to carry a professional painter for this application.  Typically, a cabinet installer will order a cabinet from the manufacture that is ready for painting and it will look like it was painted by the manufacture once installed.

It is also important to understand the days of custom cabinets are almost gone.  Many manufactures now will provide cabinet sizes at any dimension between 24″ to 48″ in 2″ or 3″ increments.  You no longer need to pay a premium to have the cabinets fit in any configuration with the cabinet sizes and spacers available.  End plates are available with some manufactures and are used to conceal appliances located at the end of a cabinet assembly.  Confirm the manufacture has matching end plates available to conceal a stove or dishwasher at the end of a group of cabinets if required.  Manufactures have cabinets available for many types of specific needs such as an integrated wine rack or a special shelf or nook for a microwave to save on counter space.  There is endless opportunity to find cabinets that will improve the look and functionality of your kitchen. At Goodlife Kitchens we work exclusively with KraftMaid cabinets as our preferred supplier. KraftMaid offer a semi-custom approach to cabinet construction, meaning a stock unit can be found to fit most applications. [why choose  KraftMaid?]

Appliance selection has a large role in determining cabinet finishes, depending on your needs spacers and special trim may be required.  Refrigerators are not always available in standard dimensions, they very in height, width, depth and door swing.  It is near impossible to find a refrigerator with an icemaker and water dispenser in a size smaller than 33 inches wide.  Dishwashers are very standard; typically 24″ wide by 24″ deep are available.  An oven’s width will vary extensively and there are different types of finishes which may require additional trim work depending on a counter flush top verses a freestanding oven top.  It is important to have your appliance measurement data available before ordering cabinets to ensure everything will fit.

As with most extensive remodeling projects, employing a professional during the design and planning stages can save you a good deal on inconvenience, heartache and money. Contact Goodlife Kitchens today, our free and professional service, coupled with our lowest price guarantee, ensures you a perfect and hassle-free kitchen installation.

kitchen cabinet styles and planning guide