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Wall cabinets: kitchen beautification starts with these

by Kelly Richardson

They're large objects. They're at eye-level. They're wall cabinets! Kitchens with sagging, scratched, and outdated cupboards create an "Uh-oh!" response from your guests. The quickest way to inject your personal style into your kitchen, other than labor-intensive sanding and refinishing, is to invest in new cabinet doors and hardware. Such an upgrade usually won't break the bank.

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Retain existing cases of wall cabinets

Often, kitchen cabinet cases look quite good; the doors are what take a beating. Here are a few options when considering cabinet refacing:

  1. Painted cabinets: Clean or repaint the cases. Change case color if you wish, to blend or contrast with new doors. Switch to laminate, bamboo, hardwood (maple, oak, cherry) for the doors to add pizazz.
  2. Stained wood cabinets: Since you're unlikely to exactly match existing cases, choose a slightly darker new wood door style, or select paint or Thermofoil for interest.


Measure and record the width and height of each door. Note how many of each size you need. Note if each is hinged left or right. You can also look into glass doors for a new and interesting way to display fine china or antiques in your kitchen.

Doors for wall cabinets: Kitchen styles with variation

Here's where you can insert yourself into your kitchen's new look. Numerous dealers down the street and online have their own product line names for major styles. Before you choose, learn the jargon.

  1. Slab: Completely unadorned, often features the wood grain; these clean lines can be contemporary (square edges) or farmhouse style (rounded edges).
  2. Raised panel: Center panel rises to frame level
  3. Recessed panel: Can be anything from Shaker and Craftsman to a molded, perhaps arched frame with flat center panel
  4. Curved panel: Center panel has top arch
  5. Beadboard panel: Inset panel has vertical grooves
  6. Routed front: A single wood piece is elegantly carved and scrolled.

The right doors for your kitchen cabinets set the style of your living space. If your kitchen needs an upgrade, begin searching for style ideas now.

About the Author

Kelly Richardson has obsessive compulsive lawn disorder and is afflicted with the need to share his knowledge with the world. Kelly writes lawn columns for a variety of home and garden magazines and e-zines.

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