What does the phrase “custom kitchen” really mean? While you may think that having a custom kitchen designed and installed in your home means high-end (expensive) cabinetry custom-made by a specialty cabinet shop, there are actually many other options that fall into this category.
The biggest misconception about cabinets is that anything that is not “custom” is just sitting there waiting for someone to order them. Due to the range of woods and finishes available, most cabinet manufacturers build the cabinets per the specs of your order – even if you are ordering the “stock” sizes. What makes a cabinet “custom” is the availability of modifications you can order for that particular cabinet.
Custom Kitchen Design: Cabinetry
Often you can have a custom kitchen design with mostly standard cabinets available from the manufacturer and a few cabinets modified to meet the special needs of your design. As most standard cabinets are sized in 3-inch increments, height, depth and width modifications to cabinets can increase your options. Configuration modifications (such as switching the drawer from the top of the cabinet to the bottom) are offered in many lines. Upgrading the sides of your cabinets to flush finish or adding decorative doors to the ends of exposed cabinets can give a custom feel to even a basic kitchen. A skilled installer provided with the right parts and pieces can often customize or even build a cabinet on-site.
Decorative accents can help customize your kitchen – many features can add a custom touch to otherwise standard cabinets:
- Stacked crown moulding with inlays
- Decorative corbels and feet
- Filler overlays
Wainscot molding, toekick modifications and decorative posts at islands help create the look of a custom island but use readily available cabinet parts. Decorative hardware can also make a big impact on the overall appearance of the kitchen. Many lines carry pulls of the same style in various lengths – installing smaller pulls on smaller doors and drawers and larger pulls on larger doors and drawers offers a more unique look.
Many manufacturers offer distressing in addition to stains and glazes. Some will allow you to select specific distressing techniques individually, or even custom paint colors. By selecting your own color and finishing techniques, you can create a look that is truly unique.