Kitchen Cabinetry: Ideas for Your Kitchen Cabinets

Discover cabinet finishes and functional features you can use to create the perfect kitchen storage in your home.

Dramatic Dark Cabinets

If your current kitchen is light and airy, consider adding visual weight to the space by selecting a dark cabinetry color, such as the black ones featured here. With open floor plans, cabinetry that contrasts with surrounding colors defines the kitchen area and creates a strong focal point for the room. However, it's important to unify the colors you choose to use; the dark veining in the marble countertops complement the cabinets, and the stainless-steel hardware ties in with the appliances and stools.

Sleek Cherry Cabinets

Sleek cherry cabinets line walls and provide plenty of storage for kitchen supplies while two appliance garages (not shown) between the upper and lower cabinets clear the limited counter space of bulky appliances and keep them close at hand. For an artistic focal point, consider breaking up a wall of cabinetry with frosted glass doors; it's a demure way to display china and stemware.

Custom Cabinets in Patina Stain

Custom cabinetry transforms an awkward corner into the perfect place to stack a coffee center, microwave, and TV. A patina stain ages new cabinets and old-world hardware gives the crowning touch. If you're starting from scratch, be bold and use two different finishes. The stain on the island blends with the finish of the hardwood floors and the wall cabinetry complements the light tone of the walls.

Maximize Small Spaces

Even the smallest kitchens can live large. Consider increasing countertop height to maximize storage underneath, and give extra thought to how cabinet doors will open to keep even tight corner storage easily accessible.

Light colors make small spaces feel larger, so consider airy colors for your cabinetry, walls, and tile. If space allows, increase your storage by extending cabinetry into adjoining nooks or all the way to the ceiling.

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Glass-Front Cabinets

Galley kitchens can feel tight and cramped, but aluminum-and-frosted-glass doors on the upper cabinets can open up the space and make it feel bigger. Items not quite pretty enough to have on display can be stashed out of sight behind lower laminate cabinets.

Distressed Cabinetry

If you are lucky enough to gain a large island in your remodel, make the most of its space by including shelves for cookbooks and deep drawers for utensils, as was done here. This kitchen embraces old-world charm with distressed cabinetry in two different colors. Custom features include vintage 1850s stained-glass doors built into the pantry and dark wooden panels on the refrigerator that make it look like an arch-top armoire.

Scaled Back Cabinetry

Sometimes less is more. If a big kitchen seems like an overwhelming sea of cabinets and cupboards, keep that in mind during the design process and opt for something more compact. In this kitchen, homeowners traded their bulky island for a compact Chinese table; it makes the space more maneuverable and offers an efficient work area. To make up for lost island storage, new cabinetry stretches to the ceiling.

White Cabinetry

Add a splash of color to the walls and paint the floor for a kitchen that sizzles with personal style. Keep simple cabinetry white to let other the design elements shine.

Old World appeal

Light walls serve as a quiet backdrop for strong architectural elements, pine cabinets, and an island with a 2-inch-thick mahogany top. These elements, along with the cabinetry's distressed finish and the dark warmth of the beveled walnut wood floors, combine to create an old French feel, which blends with the rest of the home.

Furniture-Style Cabinetry

With all of the consideration given to stains, door styles, and hardware, don't ignore the base of the cabinets. Reducing the depth of the cabinet support makes room for feet, which give it the appearance of a piece of furniture rather than a built-in unit.

Fabric-Lined Cabinet Doors

Old, dingy cabinets get a fresh look with well-placed fabric details. The blue and white color scheme shown here was inspired by a border of delft accent tiles (not pictured). Coordinating delft fabric lines the glass-fronted upper cabinets.

If your existing cabinetry still functions well but needs an update, consider these easy spruce ups:

  • Give them a fresh coat of paint.
  • Remove the doors and replace them with fabric curtains.
  • Add inserts of the material of your choice to the doors.
  • Install new pulls and knobs.

Salvaged Storage

The top hutch of an old country store display piece fits perfectly over the new sink and stainless-steel cabinets. The island, a 50-year-old bakery fixture, was cleaned, sanded, and put back into use. To master a mix of old and new, buy vintage pieces first, then purchase complementary new pieces.

Drawers and Open Storage

If you appreciate the vintage charm of a country kitchen, consider using salvaged hardware; it's a easy way to instantly add old character to your cabinets. You can maximize drawer function by replacing standard drawers with mesh baskets. They are the perfect place to store frequently used dry baking goods, fruits, and vegetables.

Cabinet Door Inserts

Replace worn surfaces and add charm at the same time with cabinet door inserts. Most inserts are made of beaded board, glass, or wallpaper. Punched and painted tin is a less common material that adds flair to any kitchen. These tin inserts feature Mexican motifs, which perfectly complement the backsplash tiles.

Frosted Glass Cabinet Doors

Give your kitchen contemporary flair with frosted-glass cabinet doors; it's an easy way to make a small space feel more open while still concealing plates, pots, and pans. Don't forget about the space above the fridge. If the doors are a hassle because of the height, remove them. Function should motivate organization and cabinetry use, which then works with design and style.

Natural Palette

For a natural palette, combine maple and stainless steel. These maple cabinets feature a mix of door styles (wood-framed tinted glass and all-wood panels) for hide-and-show visual intrigue. Hardware is notably small-scale but solid.

Clever Cubbie Storage

Cubbies make the perfect home for frequently used plates and bowls while cabinet doors inset with acrylic plastic panels give the kitchen cabinets sleek style. Keeping countertops and cabinetry in the same neutral material maintains an open and bright feeling.

Blond Kitchen Cabinets

A contemporary kitchen doesn't have to be cold. Combine stainless-steel appliances, hardware, and furniture with blond wood cabinets for a clean, sleek look.

Custom Stain and Efficient Work Space

For this kitchen, homeowners spent hours painstakingly deciding on the stain color for the cabinets. They ended up with a custom-mixed grey-green hue, which they dubbed River Stone.

This galley kitchen was designed with a rule used often in restaurants: Forty inches between counters means another surface is only a step or pivot away. Efficiently zoning the work space and keeping the appropriate cabinet storage nearby makes cuts down on cooking time and increases the functionality of the space.

Custom Kitchen Storage

Take your interests into consideration when designing your cabinetry. Here shelves installed in the island keep cookbooks and favorite recipes close at hand, and a built-in wine rack is an artistic way to display a wine collection.

Painted Cabinets

A little creativity goes a long way. This homeowner wanted to add some visual punch to the white walls and blond cabinetry. So he gave parts of the island, back wall cabinetry, and the wall surrounding the window a coat of graphite paint, which creates contrast. A dark stain on the countertops gives the space a rich, modern touch. The blonde cabinetry on the side walls balance the space, and appliance doors covers were constructed to match the rest of the wood.

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