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1740-1860


Popular in America during the 1800s, this house style is also known as a Classic Colonial style. The addition of columns makes the home look like a Greek temple.


General description:

  • Two to three stories

  • Large and formal

  • Rectangular and symmetrical with classic lines and ornamentation

  • Flat roof, balustrade, and belvedere

  • One or more chimneys extending through the roof

 

Exterior features to consider in kitchen design:

  • Brick or clapboard

  • Double-hung windows with shutters and small glass panes

  • Center entrance typically with columns and sidelights


Recommended kitchen design elements:

PL-G-Art-Deco-raised

Cabinet Doors

  • Type: Lipped or full overlay

  • Style: Raised curved panel

  • Finish: Stain or paint

  • Wood: Cherry, maple, or oak

Countertops

  • Laminate

  • Soapstone

  • Granite

Flooring

  • Linoleum

  • Ceramic

  • Wood

Architectural Details

  • Simple crown moulding

  • Dado board

  • Chair rail

 

 

 


 



 

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1920-1975

 

The Moderne style differs from the earlier Art Deco with the addition of elongated windows, sharp angular walls, and a more streamlined look.


General description:

  • Multistory

  • Stepped-back features

  • Geometric and stylized details

  • Flat roof

  • Metal windows in various linear configurations


Exterior features to include in kitchen design:

  • Irregular shape

  • Geometric ornamentation

  • Both horizontal and vertical banding


Recommended kitchen design elements:

PL-G-Art-Deco-slab

Cabinet Doors

  • Type: Full overlay

  • Style: Flat slab

  • Finish: Stain or paint

  • Wood: Cherry or maple

Countertops

  • Laminate

  • Granite

Flooring

  • Linoleum

  • Wood

Architectural Details

  • Banding

 

 


 



 

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More in this category:« Art Deco

Exotic Wood Species

More unusual and more expensive than other species, these exotic woods make beautiful cabinets.


mahoganyMahogany: Valued for a look that's as rich as its name, this durable hardwood's straight grain often incorporates esteemed figures such as mottle, curly and roe. Reddish in color, mahogany stains well to reveal either light or deep hues.

walnutWalnut: Dark brown to purplish black, this open grained wood's luster grows over time to increasingly reflect light.

 

ebony

Ebony: A dark wood with both black and brown grains, this rare species is best suited for decorative inlays and turnings.



 

 

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More in this category:« Common WoodsWood Veneers »

Questions to Ask Yourself When Selecting Cabinets

Kitchen Workspace with Cabinets and Drawers

You can print out the questionnaire and refer to it as you read through the site and while visiting a designer's showroom.

 

pdf PDF Version

 

  1. Do my current cabinets provide enough storage? Do I need more cabinetry, or do I need more organization accessories?

  2. Who will be using the kitchen? Do their needs differ by age, height or other factors?

  3. What activities besides cooking and eating take place in the kitchen? Do I need a desk area, recycling area, or cabinets to conceal a washer and dryer or TV?

  4. Is easy maintenance a must? Which material is least likely to show fingerpaints and scratches?

  5. What features do I need with my new cabinets and which could I live without or add later?

  6. What is the architectural style of my home? Is it distinctive enough that I want the kitchen to reflect it?

  7. What kind of overall style do I want to create in the kitchen? Contemporary? Traditional? Country?

  8. Depending on the overall style, do I want a wood door or would another material better create the right look?

  9. What type and style of door will help to create the look and style I want?

  10. If choosing wood, what kind of grain appeals to me? What finishes will create the look and style I want?

  11. Do I want my cabinets to include display space, such as open shelving or glass-front doors?

  12. Do I need wall cabinets for storage or do I prefer to keep wall space open for windows or decorative items?

  13. Do I need moldings and trim to create the look I want? Do I want to dust them?

 

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Options for Cabinet Door Styles

Close Up of Cabinet Door


Besides door type, you'll want to consider different door shapes and styles. One cabinet manufacturer may offer hundreds of door styles in an endless array of finishes.

Search for shapes and materials that contribute to, rather than detract from, your overall style preference. If your kitchen has a minimal stainless steel look, consider a slab door. If ornate details cover your kitchen, take a look at a raised cathedral panel to complement this style.

Your options for cabinet door style include:

 

slab doorSlab
If you like clean lines, a slab door may be the choice for you. A flat door that essentially looks like a slab of wood, metal or other material, these doors eschew panels. Add pizzazz to an MDF door by routing a detailed edge profile.




 

 

raised panel doorRaised Panel
A panel, usually made by joining pieces of solid stock lumber with adhesive, is secured to the door's frame. Raised panels generally measure between 1/2" and 3/4" thick. A routed edge profile tends to give the door a more elegant appearance.

 




 

recessed panelRecessed Panel
The recessed panel door is a flat panel affixed inside a frame constructed with miter or mortise and tenon joints. The resulting appearance has a picture frame-type look and a simpler, more country or transitional appearance.

 




 

curved panel doorCurved Panel
The top portion of this door's decorative panel curves upward in a gentle arch. The panel itself is generally raised.

 




 

 

cathedral panel doorCathedral Panel
A cathedral-type arch is incorporated into the upper rail of this raised or recessed panel.

 

 

 



beadboard panelBeadboard Panel
Typically found in a recessed panel, beadboard uses routed beaded details to create a casual country style.

 




 

 

routed cabinet doorRouted
A single piece of engineered wood material (such as MDF) is shaped to take on the appearance of a recessed or raised panel within the door, then painted or covered in laminate.




 

 

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Inserts Provide a Great Design Option for Cabinets

Dark and Light Wood Cabinets

Contrasting wood types and glass inserts give this kitchen visual interest

A kitchen loaded with base and wall cabinets can look like a storage room or feel dark and heavy. Inserts such as glass, metal or chicken wire present a great design option to add visual interest, especially on stock cabinets that might otherwise lack unique touches. Glass will also reflect light, brightening your kitchen and making it appear larger.

Clear glass can showcase fine china or collectibles, but also reveals fingerprints and clutter. Luckily, inserts come in a variety of textures and patterns that make the glass translucent or opaque rather than transparent. Options include:

  • Beveled: polished angle-ground glass with prismatic characteristics

  • Bubbled: air bubbles sprinkled in the glass to enhance the illusion of age

  • Camed: strips (or "cames") of lead, brass, or copper lie between the glass

  • Colored: tinted glass

  • Etched: a design is carved into glass using hydrofluoric acid

  • Frosted: glass blown with fine sand under high pressure for an opaque look

  • Leaded: a popular type of camed glass

  • Mullion: thin strips of wood separate panes of glass

  • Ribbed: vertical, horizontal, or diagonal lines

 

Some manufacturers also offer the option of sandwiching materials such as rice paper or fabric between the layers of glass.

Install halogen lights inside the cabinets for an additional glow or to highlight the contents. Use glass shelves to allow the light to shine all the way through. Or consider a colored interior; for example, a hunter green interior against a white cabinet can emphasize a country motif. You can also decorate the interior with stenciled patterns, faux finishes or wallpaper.

 

 

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1880-1940

 

Dominated by Frank Lloyd Wright and inspired by Japanese design influences, the Prairie house style gave birth to the open plan where one room flows into the next.


General description:

  • Multilevel

  • Long, low roof lines

  • Repetitive rows of windows

  • Cantilevered floors and roofs


Exterior features to consider in kitchen design:

  • Unornamented design elements

  • Repeated windows

  • Linear forms

  • Integrated furnishings


Recommended kitchen design elements:

PL-G-Art-Deco-recessed

Cabinet Doors 

  • Type: Inset or full overlay

  • Style: Recessed square panel

  • Finish: Stain or paint

  • Wood: Cherry, maple, or oak

Countertops

  • Laminate

  • Soapstone

  • Granite

 Flooring

  • LinoleumSlate

  • Wood

Architectural Details

  • Wood banding at wall and ceiling intersections

  • Chair rail

 

 


 



 

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More in this category:« FoursquareArt Deco »

1830-1880

 

Charles Lock Eastlake indirectly created the look when his book Hints on Household Taste in Furniture, Upholstery and Other Details was published in the late 1800s. Designs in the book became the basis of furniture and building styles of the era.


General description:

  • Multistory

  • Similar in style to the Queen Anne, yet more restrained in overall design and ornamentation


Exterior features to consider in kitchen design:

  • Exterior trim adds structural significance to design

  • Wood, stone, or brick, with sometimes a mix of all three to add a multicolor effect


Recommended kitchen design elements:

PL-G-Art-Deco-raised_1_

Cabinet Doors

  • Type: Lipped or full overlay

  • Style: Raised square panel

  • Finish: Stain or paint

  • Wood: Cherry, maple, or oak

Countertops

  • Laminate

  • Soapstone

  • Granite

Flooring

  • Linoleum

  • Slate

  • Wood

Architectural Details

  • Crown moulding

  • Chair rail

 


 



 

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More in this category:« Greek RevivalQueen Anne »

Your Options for Door Types

Wood Cabinet With Drawers

These full overlay doors hide almost all of the cabinet frame.

How the cabinet door fits over the cabinet box determines its basic type.


Full overlay doors 
have less than 1/8" between them-in effect, they fully lay over the cabinet. By definition, all frameless cabinets have full overlay doors. Manufacturers can attach full overlay doors to framed cabinets as well, however, creating a similar look. You can tell for sure whether a cabinet is framed or frameless by opening a door and checking for rails and stiles.


Partial overlay doors
conceal just some of the face frame-there is usually a ½" to 1" space between closed doors, allowing you to see much of the face frame. Because partial overlay doors are smaller than full overlay doors, they require less material, so this choice could slightly reduce your cabinetry's total cost.


Inset doors
sit within the rails and stiles and lay flush with the front edges of the cabinet box. Truly inset doors are only available with framed construction, but designers can achieve the same look using vertical pilasters on frameless cabinets. Note: wood may expand and contract because of humidity, causing rubbing between the door and stiles.


Lipped doors
are routed with a slight wooden groove to fit over the face frame.

 

 

 

 

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An Overview of Home Styles

Your cabinetry should enhance and compliment the overall style of your home.

Consider the style of your home when selecting your cabinetry, this helps keep the continuity of the home and kitchen design.

Although it's not essential, you can bring continuity to your home by designing the interior in the same theme as its exterior architectural style.

Use the home and kitchen styles guide to identify the architectural style that most closely resembles that of your own home. Under each category, you'll find a description of the style's general characteristics and recommendations for what kinds of kitchen cabinets, countertops, flooring, and architectural details would best complement it.

You can also peruse the different styles and recommendations to get a general feel for which you prefer. You may end up selecting a style that differs from your home's architecture yet still captures what you had in mind for your dream kitchen.

 

Home StylePeriodDescriptionCabinet Door Details

American Colonial
Cape Cod
Farmhouse
Dutch Colonial
Saltbox

1600-1800

Cottage styles
Medieval influence; rectangular, one to two-and-a-half stories; few windows with small, divided panes; add-on looks

Plank doors or simple paneled doors; some vertical or diagonal boards; bucks; small, multi-paneled windows

Classical
Georgian
Federal
Greek Revival

1740-1860

Neoclassical homes
Blocky, rectangular, or nearly square; two to three stories; columns; symmetrical with classical ornamentation

Symmetrical panel doors with varying panel sizes; Palladian-type windows; ornate features

Victorian
Eastlake
Queen Anne
Gothic Revival
Italianate

1830-1880

Picturesque
Board-and-batten siding; decorative barge boards, high gables, and gable pendants; shingles, ornamental trim, and turrets

Vertical planking with arched top; expressed framework

Arts & Crafts
Craftsman
Foursquare
Prairie

1880-1940

Beauty in function/anti-industrial
Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired; sensitive to materials and natural setting; box shapes; low-rising hip roof; geometric forms, art glass, and angular protrusions

Clean, geometric shapes; off-center lights; contrasting textures and lines

Moderne Movement
Art Deco
Moderne

1920-1975

Sophisticated simplicity
Interplay of indoor-outdoor living; blend of International Style & Machine Age technology; geometric forms; walls of glass; natural woods and metal

Elegantly simple; geometric patterns and plain, clean lines; metal and glass accents

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