Kitchen cabinet doors are the most visible part of cabinets. They should, therefore, be chosen with care. In fact, your kitchen cabinet doors will define the style and design of your remodeled kitchen. The cabinet door style will be duplicated in the design of drawer fronts as well. It is also possible to embellish and modify some of these styles to make your kitchen design more unique.
The eight primary styles of kitchen cabinet doors are:
- Reveal-overlay panel – Created by adding an overlay on the front of the door to create the appearance of a recessed panel while retaining the strength of a flat panel door.
- Flat panel – A flat, un-embellished door typically used in more contemporary style kitchens.
- Frame and panel – A plain center panel surrounded by a frame.
- Beaded frame and panel – The overlay panel has a beaded edge.
- Square raised panel – The center panel of these kitchen cabinet doors is raised slightly more than the edges of the door.
- Bead board panel – The panel uses a vertically grooved center panel for a more distinctive appearance.
- Curved raised panel – The same as a raised panel door, except that the top of the panel is slightly arched or curved.
- Cathedral panel – Another variation on the raised panel door, with a panel that has at the top the distinctive curves of a cathedral window.
Any of these styles can be further embellished by adding additional layers of framing or overlay, except the flat panel and the beadboard panel styles. The panels can also be carved with various designs. All of these styles of kitchen cabinet doors can be used in natural or stained wood or can be painted.
For variation and to add interest to the room, the kitchen cabinet doors can also be treated in other ways to make them unique. For example, door panels can be replaced with glass, or some of the kitchen cabinet doors can be removed completely for open shelving for cookbooks or other items. Several types of glass can be used either to create a different effect or to make the items in the cabinets less apparent while maintaining the feel of openness. For example, colored or stained glass can be used very effectively in cathedral panel styles. Even leaded or etched glass can be used in this uniquely shaped opening. Etching the glass opens hundreds of possibilities for a unique kitchen design that highlights a special family interest (horses, flowers, music).
Other glass options include frosted glass, textured glass or barnstead glass. The latter is a clear liner-ribbed patterned glass with embedded wire to make the glass somewhat opaque. Colored glass can be very effective in a few of the cabinet doors (for variation). Yet another possibility for a truly distinctive look in kitchen cabinet doors would use layered glass. This glass is produced by combining tempered glass with another material. Often these materials are very exotic, such as rice paper or a metallic film. The special material is placed between glass layers to create a very unique effect.
The most commonly used styles of kitchen cabinet doors are flat panel for more contemporary kitchens and raised panel doors for other styles. Overlays and bead board panel doors are less common. Consider all available options before making a selection for your kitchen cabinet doors. With a little imagination and a good cabinetmaker, you can create a beautiful, functional and unique kitchen design.