Custom Cabinetry Ideas for Your Kitchen Remodel
When it comes to kitchen design and remodeling, perhaps a few of us have already planned exactly what kind of custom cabinets we want. Plenty of folks spend hours walking around their dream spaces in their mind. They might know what kind of pull-outs, cabinet doors, and layouts they desire. But for most of us, we don’t necessarily know what we like until we see it, or we have trouble settling on one final design. If we're on the fence about trying something trendy, we may be unsure if we can pull off an appealing yet unique style with any measure of success.
If you fall into this second camp, the best thing to do is to look at photos of successfully remodeled kitchens. We’ve put together a few iconic and of-the-moment kitchen cabinet looks to inspire you to approach your own renovation plans with confidence.
Many kitchen cabinets in Atlanta, Georgia’s historic homes were originally built in the early 1900s or even the late 1800s. In some cases, particularly in homes built before 1910, no kitchen cabinetry existed at all. Instead, storage consisted of shelves, tables, and pantries. In historic homes where cabinetry was originally installed, function is often compromised and storage confined. No one dreamed of the kind of gadgets and inventory we'd be asking a kitchen to store in the 2000s. Older cabinets that have served their time will surely show their wear and tear. Warped alignment and faded finishes are common.
At Copper Sky Design + Remodel, we recognize the responsibility of preserving historic elements while introducing efficient functionality. Remodeling kitchens in Georgia means we specialize in integrating modern utility with original aesthetics. Get beautiful, functional cabinets that complement the style of your historic home. In other words, we’re here to say you can have your cake and eat it too! Here’s how.
Add Design Depth to End Panels
We’ve all heard that it’s the finishes that bring the magic to a remodel, and this is certainly true in the kitchen. In our coastal-inspired Atlanta renovation, we started by installing some unique, quarter-sawn, inset cabinets. We paid special attention to finishing them with fine detail, adding paneled craftsmanship to the exposed ends that wrap around the island and built-in table area, creating texture and interest where there would otherwise be a smooth, unimaginative surface.
You don't have to stop at ornamentation - you can put the ends of your kitchen cabinets to work as well. Consider designating one end of the island for shallow, open shelving to display unique dishes, a grooved wine rack, or classy cookbooks.
Don’t Be Afraid of Color
Can color be overdone? Sure, but there's a lot of opportunity between a classic white kitchen and an overwhelming hue. Often, homeowners opt for the classic beauty of safe neutrals, which definitely have their place, primarily because it's a timeless and universally appreciated aesthetic.
This reluctance to commit to bold color is certainly understandable. Colors in the kitchen can elicit a “love it or hate it” response, but if you’re working closely with an experienced designer to incorporate your favorite palette, you’ll end up with a personalized and perfect place that feels exactly right. Successfully executing statement color might empower you to try it again in your next project!
For an example of color done right, take a look at this Decatur kitchen with a colorful island that pops against the all-white perimeter cabinets pictured above.
Get Creative with Your Materials
Most hardwood cabinets come in a limited variety of styles—shaker, flat, or inset—and are made from maple, oak, cherry, birch, hickory, and knotty pine. But if you’re getting custom cabinets, it’s worth entertaining ideas on incorporating creative styles and materials into your cabinetry. What about glass doors with custom cabinet lighting? Acrylic for retro-futurism? You can have any material you like for your custom kitchen cabinets. Why not mix and match?
Create Personalized Elements that Work
Custom cabinets mean you can have anything you want inside to solve all of your storage issues. Your custom kitchen cabinets should be created to store your existing items, not generic or hypothetical belongings. Add pull-out cabinet drawers to keep everything accessible. Consider custom storage for your uncommonly shaped, but frequently-used items like baking sheets and cutting boards. Need a pull-out step stool? Make the most of every inch by building in toe-kick storage. Keep your kitchen ecosystem intact with a compost drawer. Wrap your custom cabinets into the mud room to create a seamless and clutter-free drop zone. Your custom cabinets should feel like they house everything exactly where you need them when you work in your kitchen.
Further, it's wise to build extra cabinet space for things you don't yet know you can't live without. Who knew they had to have an air fryer until air fryers were everywhere? Extra storage is always a good idea. We've heard few complaints about too much storage space over the years, but often hear plenty of people lamenting about the lack of storage in their kitchens.
What Makes a Quality Kitchen Cabinet?
Kitchens are among the most popular remodeling projects, which means there’s plenty of information available on choosing the styles and colors that work best for your home. But there’s much less talk about the basics. For instance, what makes for a quality custom kitchen cabinet? Let’s go over a few pointers.
The first decision you’ll make when selecting cabinets for your kitchen remodeling project is which material to use. As you might expect, the highest quality cabinets are made from solid wood such as hard maple, cherry, ash, birch, pine, hickory, and red and white oak.
Be aware when working with solid woods that they should be completely finished on all sides before they are transferred from the manufacturing company to your home since atmospheric changes in moisture can warp unfinished surfaces.
The second best cabinet material option is a plywood core with a hardwood veneer. This combination is more affordable than solid hardwood and can still appear authentic since its outside is composed of hardwood, but because the hardwood layer is thinner, its overall integrity can’t match that of hardwood. It is a softer product with more propensity to peel or dent.
Materials to avoid include thermofoil and laminates. Thermofoil cabinets use heat and pressure to bind a printed vinyl exterior onto a substrate, while laminates are made from a paper substrate, a printed and colored surface, and a protective coating. Both show their wear much sooner and don't present the kind of texture and interest offered by actual wood.
Cabinet Construction Counts
In terms of the cabinet construction itself, you’ll first want to make sure that your wood is thick enough to support the weight of high-quality countertops. This means that your front frames should be ¾” thick. You’ll also want to make sure that you’re using solid hardwood to mount your cabinets to your walls.
Next, examine how your cabinets are fitted together. Cabinet boxes should be supported by l-beam or corner braces, and the wood should be fitted together with tight dovetail joints for maximum stability. (Other cabinets use dowels, rabbets, glue, or staples for joining, but these are less stable options.)
Top Drawer Hardware
Now it’s time to look at the fine-tuning. Many cabinet drawer slides are made of nylon or plastic, but you’ll want to make sure yours are made of metal slides with high load-bearing ratings. Next, it’s best if the slides are mounted underneath rather than on the side so that you can maximize your storage space inside the drawer.
Finally, don’t forget that investing in special hardware features for your cabinets can make a substantial difference in ease of daily use and wear over time.
Luxury custom cabinet hardware should include the following.
Full extension or over-travel slides so that your drawers extend fully
Soft-close action so that doors and drawers will protectively close themselves when directed
Adjustable drawer slides so that you can realign pathways when cabinet alignment shifts with time
Copper Sky Design + Remodel Does Atlanta, Georgia Kitchen Remodels Right
We'd love to hear more about your project and team up to create the results you deserve. Copper Sky Design + Remodel would be honored to work on your behalf to transform your current home into the dream home you desire. We want you to have all of the resources you need at every step of your remodeling journey. Learn more about Atlanta kitchen remodels and the Copper Sky Design + Remodel difference by downloading our complimentary kitchen remodeling cost guide below.