Cabinets and countertops are the main sources of beauty and functionality in many kitchens. Choosing the countertops and cabinets wisely is important to ensure that your kitchen will be both pleasing to the eye, and useful for everyday cooking. In this article, we’ll discuss the issues to consider when selecting counters and cabinets for your kitchen remodel.
Stock, Semi-Stock or Custom?
Stock cabinets are sold as-is, without customization. Stock cabinets are the most affordable cabinet options available. They’re also the least accommodating if you need something special to optimize your kitchen storage.
Semi-stock cabinets are stock cabinets that can be customized if needed. For example, a cabinet that might come standard in 28-inches could also be available in other sizes if needed. Semi-stock cabinets are more costly than standard stock cabinets, but if you have particular storage needs, semi-custom cabinets are a practical option.
Custom cabinets are made from scratch for the consumer on an as-needed basis. They’re very costly, but if you need a special cabinet for your space, custom cabinets can be made to fit your needs.
Different types of wood have unique grain patterns and colors. Oak is very durable and long-lasting, which makes it one of the most common types of wood to use for cabinets. Cherry is similarly durable, but has a distinctly reddish color. Maple is very flexible and accepts nearly all types of stains.
Painted or Stained?
Just a few years ago, most cabinets were stained instead of painted. Today, homeowners are commonly drawn to painted cabinets. You can choose whichever type you want, but don’t forget that cabinets can never be unpainted once the paint has been applied. Think hard before making your final decision.
Counters can come in different types, though the most valuable countertop material is stone. Stone comes in many colors, including white, red, green, blue, brown or black. Each type of stone has its own characteristics.
- Granite is one of the hardest types of natural stone. It is highly scratch-resistant, though it can be stained.
- Marble is one of the softest types of stone. It can be scratched, worn down, stained or etched.
- Quartz is a man-made stone created from resins and crushed natural stone. It is very hard, stain-resistant and very low maintenance.
When choosing the right stone counters for your kitchen, consider the appearance of the stone and the wood together. If possible, hold samples of the materials up against one another. This will help you assess how they will look when installed together in the same space. Keep in mind that natural stone can have variations in color and texture. One stone sample may not show all the different colors in the slab. Ask for multiple samples to get a good sense of how the slab will look in your kitchen.