For many people about to renovate a kitchen or build a new house, choosing kitchen cabinets can become a decision-riddled, frustrating experience. You don’t have to become super-informed about the cabinet construction; the sales person can tell you that. But knowing kitchen cabinet manufacturing options, from the simple to the sublime, and possible features and upgrades before you meet with the sales person can give you a better idea of what questions to ask about your kitchen cabinet design layout.
Kitchen Cabinet Manufacturing Options
Stock – Stock cabinets, which are pre-made to standard sizes like a 30-inch wide base cabinet with two doors under one drawer, may be readily available from home improvement centers or ordered for a quick turnaround. It’s the limited features like custom colors or door/drawer front designs that make stock kitchen cabinetry a good value. For a more economical version, ask about ready-to-assemble kitchen cabinets.
Custom – For a furniture-like appearance, go with custom cabinetry. The height and width of the cabinets are built to customer specifications. You can choose any type or color of wood for the cabinets and the design of drawer and door fronts, like bead board or raised panel. Glass in doors may be clear, frosted, stained or leaded. The options are limited only by how much you want to pay. Custom cabinets may take more than three or four months to build.
Semi-Custom – Semi-custom kitchen cabinets can be a mixture of both stock and custom cabinets. The cabinets sizes are typically standard widths but with more choices of materials, designs and features, like a custom finish or organizers for drawers or cabinets. Semi-custom cabinets may take up to three months to build.
Kitchen Cabinet Features
Lazy Susan – The lazy Susan, which fits a corner kitchen cabinet, spins completely around to utilize more space deep in a corner.
Roll-Out Shelves – For lower cabinets, roll-out shelves make reaching items in the back of the cabinet easier. Roll-out designs can also include cutting boards or small tables just below the countertop. Look for wire roll-out shelves with sides to hold recycle or waste containers that can be tucked out of sight in a cabinet.
Narrow Roll-Out Unit – Sometimes referred to as a pantry unit, these inserts can fill a void as narrow as 6 inches. The narrow roll-out unit can hold spices or other small containers.
Appliance Garage – Resting on the counter top and extending upward to the bottom of the wall cabinets, an appliance garage is cubby for small kitchen items like a can opener, mixer or coffee maker that can be pulled out for use. The cubby has a roll top door (tambour) for easy access.
Dividers – Keeping tools like knives or flatware separated can be achieved with built-in drawer dividers. Closely spaced vertical dividers extending from the top to the bottom of a cabinet can separate short items like dinner plates or baking sheets.