The Basics of Kitchen Cabinets

  • The cabinetry is defining and the most prominent part of a kitchen. So, it is crucial to choose the right kitchen cabinet style to compliment your kitchen. There are many questions that one needs to ask themselves when choosing a cabinet. If you are consulting a designer, then you will be provided with many custom kitchen cabinets designs that fulfill your needs and are aesthetically pleasing. Without a designer, it can be a difficult task to find the right option. (Information Credit –

    Types of Cabinets

    The first thing to be determined is the type of cabinet you want. There are four basic types of cabinets available for kitchen spaces –

    • Base cabinets under the kitchen counter
    • Wall mounted cabinets
    • Tall cabinets, generally used as pantry
    • Special units like bottle racks, hutches and corner cabinets

    Cabinet Grade

    After you have decided your cabinet style, the next thing you will need to consider is the grade or quality of the cabinet. Generally, based on the construction quality, there are four grades of cabinet available.

    • Ready-to-assemble cabinets – Such cabinets are found available with big furniture retailers. Ready to assemble cabinets are less expensive, but they are also less durable. The assembling and installing process of these cabinets isn’t a very simple process. In many cases, you might need to hire professionals for installing them.
    • Stock or ready-made cabinets – These are the cabinets that are sold directly by the manufacturers. Stock cabinets are ready-made and thus, sold in specific sizes. This offers less flexibility. However, these cabinets are often available in a variety of materials. Stock cabinets are an affordable choice and better in quality than ready-to-assemble cabinets.
    • Semi-custom cabinets – These hit middle of the ground in terms of price. They also offer high quality than stock cabinets. Semi-custom cabinets could be stock cabinets with the option to customize the doors and shelving, or they are units made by manufacturers according to your instructions. With semi-custom cabinets, you can choose your desired materials and specify the size of the unit too.
    • Custom Cabinets – These are undoubtedly the highest end of the spectrum in terms of both, price and quality. Custom cabinets are completely made-to-order and offer unlimited options. You have the freedom to dictate the materials to be used, the hardware components, the style of the cabinet, its finish and the construction too.

    Cabinet Construction

    The construction of the cabinet determines its strength and aesthetic appeal. There are two styles of cabinet construction-

    • Framed – Framed cabinets feature stiles and rails forming a frame at the front of the cabinet to give it extra strength and dimension. With framed cabinets, you will have a larger choice of door types.
    • Frameless – Frameless cabinets offer a contemporary look to the cabinet and provide better access to the interiors. In this method, the face frame is excluded and the box construction is denser to ensure stability. With frameless cabinets, you can only opt for full overlay doors.

    Once you have determined the basics of your cabinet, you can move on to deciding its style, finish, material and other factors. With the right basics, you will be able to find the right, cost-effective cabinet.