If you have a custom home, you might very well have custom cabinetry. Does that mean it’s attractive, functional for you, of the latest and best quality materials and construction?
No. As a matter of fact, I’ve been in custom homes that have really crappy cabinets.
Why? Because it’s likely dated and was perhaps built using old style/inexpensive hinges, glides, and design. Does the average homeowner realize this? Not usually.
Euro hinges, full extension glides, and especially soft-close hinges were not used nearly as often in homes years ago. Take a look at some of the cabinetry I’ve seen in custom homes that truly is pitiful for the quality of house and neighborhood. Would this be something you’d want to replace if you remodeled? Yes. So, think seriously about including it in your scope of work and expense if you are about to update your kitchen, bathroom, or cabinetry in your home and have this type of cabinets.
(BTW, not all these cabinets below were in custom homes, but most were. And these are all good examples of some of the cabinetry I’ve seen.
One telltale sign are these hinges. No one really uses these any more. Most newer apartments even have better hinges on their cabinets than these. However, I’ve seen older custom homes with just these hinges on their cabinets.
Another sign of a lower end way to build cabinets are the door styles. This door style is simpler to build than a paneled door.
Why? Because most carpenters can just cut the boards and mouldings to create this particular door style. A paneled door style requires special equipment and assembling done by a more specialized shop. Sometimes cabinet boxes are built by a local carpenter and then doors can be ordered from a special shop that has the equipment to make paneled doors. That’s fine. I like that method if the local carpenter doesn’t have the equipment to do the doors I want.
These cabinets in my kitchen have a full overlay style; a style where the doors overlay the face frame, making for a clean, simple look with doors butted together showing only a tiny reveal. They achieve maximum storage and accessibility with the cabinet. These cabinets have Euro hinges and full-extension glides, some have soft-close. They have trash drawers, divided storage, pull-outs, deep drawer space for great storage, and, because of the full overlay…no center stile. :-)
Here’s a center stile, seen when you open the double door cabinet up. The word stile refers to the vertical members of the cabinet face frame. See how that stile or middle vertical board limits the accessibility of that cabinet? It’s just more awkward to move dishes in and out.
Here’s a cabinet with no center stile. Nice, right? ;-)
I almost always try to build a cabinet around a refrigerator when I do a remodel, because then storage comes out flush with the face of the frig, making it much more accessible. It’s also a nice place to go to the ceiling with cabinets to get even more storage there. Honestly, if you have an upper cabinet that just runs across your refrigerator at 12” deep, the same depth as the rest of your upper cabinets, how much do you really access that storage???? I’ll bet there are things up there you don’t even remember you own.
This is so much better, no?
So, if you’re considering a remodel and think you might want to leave the cabinets and just paint them, consider this info I shared here.
Oh, and by the way...
You can see more about my kitchen cabinets’ interiors at this link.
Do you need a beautiful kitchen or bathroom designed just for you? If you’re in The Woodlands or far north Houston, you can contact me here.
If you need general concept and direction, read this.
If you need a specific question answered or just need a little help pointing you in the right direction about the design of your space, click through for this Q&A service.
Need some cool hardware to spiff up your cabinetry? I've got some personal faves right here linked to buy!
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