making kitchen cabinets to look like furniture


Customize your kitchen cabinets with furniture-style details.
The right type of cabinet component can help refresh and add character to your kitchen’s style — whether you want brand-new cabinets or just need to revamp your old ones. But some design elements with the most impact may be small ones you haven’t even considered. Here are some details to integrate into your cabinets for a truly stylish design.

Take a basic kitchen up a notch with decorative add-ons that give cabinets a high-end look

Armoire-Style Cupboard

Armoire-Style Cupboard
There’s no end to the usefulness of this stand-alone armoire-style cupboard. The multiple drawers could contain table linens, silver, and serving pieces. And the upper level of the cabinet could easily house a large flat-screen TV. Cabinet-style cupboards feel like fine furniture, but offer all the amazing perks of modern cabinetry such as pullout storage and drawer dividers.

Surprising Turned-Leg Sink

Surprising Turned-Leg Sink

Here’s a surprising look for a kitchen sink — intricately turned legs. The ornate legs and white-painted finish create a custom look. The chinoiserie-style fabric creates a skirt to hide undersink storage and tie the room’s color palette together.

Cabinetry-Clad Refrigerator

Cabinetry-Clad Refrigerator

These large doors appear to be cabinetry, but instead hide a pro-style refrigerator and freezer. Built-in overhead cabinets make this refrigerator and side storage ensemble feel like a large piece of fine furniture.

Bookshelf + Open Storage

Bookshelf and Open Storage

Oh, what to do with all those cookbooks? This bright bookshelf/storage wall solves that problem with style. Simple cubbies above the books store single bottles of wine, and colorful baking and serving dishes are displayed on the shelves above.

Furniture-Style Island

Furniture-Style Island

A decorative painted exterior, ornate inlays, and tapered, carved feet make this stone-topped island look like an antique — but it’s not! This kitchen gets all the style of an antique piece of furniture with the hard-working practicality of an island.

Inspired Details

Inspired Details

Glass-front cabinets on the island add a custom look and mimic the look of a curio cabinet.

Beverage Center

Beverage Center

A series of small apothecary-style drawers and curved detail inset transforms standard cabinetry. Here, the beverage station feels like a stand-alone piece of furniture because of its staggered depths and sweet arched inset. Different heights (or finishes) make permanently installed furniture feel more freestanding — and more furniturelike.

Mantel-Top Range

Mantel-Top Range

A ceiling-hugging range hood (with spectacular crown molding) surrounded by inset cabinets takes center stage. Architectural add-ons, such as the corbel-supported mantel over the range, use furniture elements to make standard cabinetry look like they were custom-made.

Dresser-Style Cabinets

Dresser-Style Cabinets

You really can’t have enough drawers in a kitchen — especially in the cooking area. Here, a dresser-style cabinet contains stacks of drawers and serves as a room divider. The arched, floor-level cutout makes the kitchen cabinet feel like it has feet.


Furniture Details on Kitchen Cabinets

Furniture Details on Kitchen Cabinets

Architectural details on standard cabinetry give it a custom look. Here, crown molding and turned feet transform standard cupboards into a decorative asset in the kitchen. Search online for tons of stylish options.

Island with Table Legs

Island with Table Legs

The tapered legs of this island add-on make it appear to be a piece of furniture. The marble top continues from the rest of the work space to create an unbroken look.

Built-In Bookcase

Built-In Bookcase

Added to the end of this island is a built-in bookcase. Beautiful trimwork showcases this as a deliberate addition to the kitchen — for beautiful and smart storage.

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kitchen cabinets that go with oak floors

Hardwood Flooring in Modern Metalic Kitchen

There are SO many colours of oak in the world – virtually every colour in the rainbow it seems! And while some colours of oak can be quite timeless, there are also many versions that can be challenging (understatement) to modernize and update.

And why do I call them colours of oak not species of oak? Because oak is often stained a different colour than its roots (literally) suggest – so we’re going to base things on the overall ‘colour’ that you see – not the chronological history of the tree!

The Best Paint Colours to Update Oak Cabinets, Flooring, Trim, and More! This is going to be TREE-LY exciting, so let’s get started!

Before you get in to the nitty gritty, you need to decide whether you want to accent your oak or whether you want to blend or camouflage it a bit.

(The photo above shows a colour that lightly accents the oak cabinets)

To Accent Oak or Wood

Cool colours such as green, blue and neutrals with those undertones may accent your light oak, making it appear more colourful. If you love your oak and want to play it up then this is good. If you want to neutralize your wood, this is not
Paint colours that are a few tones lighter or darker than the wood tone can also help to accent. However, simply painting the walls a cooler colours regardless of depth will do a good job
To Blend or Camouflage Oak or Wood

Most warm colours and neutrals with warm undertones will blend a bit more with oak, lowering the contrast and reducing the overall effect of them. So if you aren’t loving your oak, then a warm toned colour might hit the spot!
Neutral paint colours with very subtle purple undertones can complement many oaks without accenting or blending
Keeping the paint colour a similar depth to that of your wood is a great way to keep things seamless, but can be a bit bland feeling if you choose a warm or neutral colour. It’s better to go just a bit lighter OR darker than the depth of your wood.

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Kitchen Range Hood Use to Improve Air Quality


Do you have a Range Hood, and do you actually use your Range Hood in your Kitchen? Regular use of kitchen exhaust ventilation systems can help control excess moisture in the home. Indoor air and human health are major housing issues.

Air Quality

Biological pollutants, such as molds, are health threats. These pollutants require a moist environment. The quality of indoor air, and its effect on human health, is an issue of major importance in the field of housing. Recently, molds and other biological pollutants in indoor air have received considerable media attention. Litigation and insurance claims have increased as homeowners become concerned about damage from mold, both to the physical structure of the home and to the health of the occupants. The incidence of allergies and asthma has increased, especially among children. Families have learned that biological pollutants, such as molds and dust mites, can exacerbate problems with these illnesses.

Controlling Moisture

Molds, dust mites, and other biological pollutants are naturally occurring in the air, structure, and furnishings of a home. However, to grow to abundance and become a health threat, they require a moist environment. Moisture in the home is a complex subject. Controlling Moisture build-up in the home is one of the most important strategies for ensuring healthy indoor air. A continually moist environment harbors biological pollutants such as mold and dust mites, which can trigger asthma and other respiratory illnesses. Regular use of kitchen exhaust ventilation systems can help control moisture, yet, according to a study published by the Forum for Family and Consumer Issues (FFCI), most people don’t use range hoods for moisture control, but for other issues, such as smoke and odors. The study, titled Use of Kitchen Ventilation: Impact on Indoor Air Quality, found that noise is a major factor, as is homeowner ignorance about the importance of ventilating a modern home.


Range Hood and Contemporary Kitchen Cabinets Signature Pearl


As part of a study of kitchen usage, the Center for Real Life Kitchen Design at Virginia Tech interviewed 78 households, asking many questions about when and how people use Kitchen Range Hoods.

The big three: noise, ignorance and belief that it’s “not necessary.”

The participants in the interview cooked regularly and frequently: 68 percent cooked complete meals five or more times per week and 97 percent prepared dinner on a regular basis.

The majority of participants (84 percent) had electric ranges, but most also owned a microwave oven. An interesting finding is that 32 percent used the microwave oven about the same as their range top, and 31 percent used the microwave oven more than the range top.

Most of the participants (92 percent) reported having mechanical kitchen ventilation systems. The most common type was an updraft system—a hood attached to a cabinet over the cook top or range. The most common features in the ventilation systems were a light (91 percent) and a multi-speed fan (84 percent). Over half of these systems (55 percent) were routed to the outside; however, 17 percent of the participants did not know if their ventilation systems exhausted to the outside.

Here’s the really interesting part: Only 8 percent of the participants used their ventilation system whenever they cooked, while 8 percent used ventilation “almost never,” and 15 percent used ventilation only “once in a while.”



The table describes the most frequent reasons that people cited for using or not using their kitchen ventilation systems. The most common reasons cited for using a kitchen ventilation system were to control odors and smoke. Noise was the most common reason for avoiding the kitchen ventilation system.

Participants gave various reasons for using their kitchen ventilation systems specifically with cook top cooking, typically to solve problems with odor, smoke and steam. Kitchen ventilation was less common when only the oven was being used: 46 percent never used ventilation, while 28 percent only used ventilation for oily/greasy foods and 17 percent for smelly foods.



Our Recommendations

Since people are more likely to use a fan if it isn’t noisy, always spec an Energy Star-rated unit. Range hoods that have earned the Energy Star label are not only 70 percent more efficient, they must also meet standards for noise and efficacy: Minimum Efficacy Levels2.8 cfm/watt; Maximum Sound Levels2.0 sones.

The Energy Star website includes a searchable database that you can use.

One of the best innovations in range hood technology in recent years has been particle and heat-sensing devices. In our view, these devices should become the de facto standard across the industry. Further, it’s time for range hoods to be integrated with the Internet of Things. For homeowners, reluctant or not, there would be clear health benefits to regular use of range hoods. And for those who choose not to use the hoods, devices that are “smart” can automatically kick on anyway, clearing the air for everyone else who lives in the building. For more information be sure to Contact your local Kitchen Designer to get a personalized approach at picking the right Range Hood for you.


Modern Downdraft Range Hoods with Contemporary Kitchen Remodel in Columbus

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7 Ways to Upgrade Your Kitchen


Buyers will swarm over a state-of-the-art upgrade in the kitchen. And they will often walk away from a house where the kitchen isn’t what they hoped for.

You don’t want to be trying to sell a home with a deal-breaker kitchen. But you don’t want to (cha-ching!) spring for a total Kitchen Remodel either.
The good news is that there are ways to make a less-than-perfect kitchen look lots better without spending lots of money. The secret is to put your dollars where they’ll do the most good.


1. Bright Lighting

Good illumination is important for a clean, modern look and it signals that your kitchen is a serious, functioning space. Get the maximum wattage you can into both your task lighting and your over-all lighting, and make sure your Realtor knows where the switches are.

Budget tip: A statement ceiling fixture, even an inexpensive knockoff or DIY project, is a plus if your kitchen can accommodate it. You could also improve the under cabinet lighting with LED lighting strip kit. Read more on our previous lighting blog post.


2. A Fabulous Faucet

Here’s another place where an investment returns itself. An impressive faucet can make an old kitchen look much newer. It doesn’t need all the bells and whistles, but it should be big. Expect to spend between $150 and $300.
Budget tip: Do your homework, be patient, and scoop up one on sale.


Kitchen Remodeling using Signature Pearl off-White Cabinets and Acaicia Wood Flooring in Grove City Ohio

3. New Cabinets

When it comes to fix-up costs, new cabinets do not have to take the majority of your budget.Installing semi-custom cabinets in a tiny condo (first home) against the advice of all well wishers lecturing about ‘resale value’ – best investment in your quality of life, will never regret it.

The other best option is to go Ready-to-Assemble (RTA) because we could afford to, not having to make every inch of space work.

No ideological preference for either option – whatever works for the particular kitchen and your needs. Many RTA brands offer enough options to configure what you need from the standard options on offer. As long as you go for whatever works for the next owner, you’ll enjoy the result.


4. Handsome Hardware

If you’ve had the same knobs and pulls in your kitchen for 20 years, maybe it’s time for a makeover. Hardware is part of the kitchen’s jewelry. Bring home one sample and see what it looks like before committing to a full count. Browse online to see what’s trending and perfect for your kitchen’s style. If the present ones are top quality, remove them, clean them and replace.

Budget tip: If you have visible hinges that don’t make a style statement, a good carpenter can install hidden hinges to create a sleeker appearance. The visible holes for old hinge screws will have to be patched, so replacing hinges works only if you’re painting your cabinets.



5. Statement Countertops

Yes, countertops are a major investment, but buyers can be fussy about them.

Check what your competition has and try to match the quality in your own kitchen. If the standard is granite and you have old laminate, you could be losing serious buyers.

If the idea of spending money on new counters bothers you, consider the impact it will have on your home’s desirability, and factor into your decision what it costs each month to maintain your home while it’s on the market.

Get prices for granite, quartz, solid surface, concrete and even wood. Some countertop suppliers will throw in a complimentary sink to sweeten the deal.

Budget tip: Put a high end surface on just an island or just the sink area and call it “custom styling.”

6. Matching Appliances

Although you might get away with unmatched counters, major kitchen appliances that match will give a lackluster kitchen some credibility. Stainless steel isn’t a requirement any longer now that many people are disenchanted with the upkeep.

So, depending on your market, functioning appliances that look new and match could be “good enough.”


7. Gourmet Touches

These are less important than the other upgrades I’ve listed. But they will definitely earn you extra credit. If you own a big, bright KitchenAid mixer or a fancy espresso machine, don’t hide them away unless your kitchen is so tiny they would add visual clutter. Other touches might be a stocked wine rack (fill the emptied wine bottles with water and cork them), a beautiful cutting board, or a retro blender.


Sold Home For Sale Sign in front of Beautiful New Home.

Make Selling Your Home a Priority

If your kitchen is functional but leans too much towards builder grade or old fashioned, it could be preventing you from getting offers. These upgrades will add that touch of luxury buyers expect.

Sure, a fancy range hood, a trash compacter, custom tiled backsplash, wine chiller, roll out shelving and other wish-list perks would be nice, but unless they are already in place, adding them probably means you’re over-fixing. Just budget your costs so you meet or beat what homes in your price range are offering.

Of course, maintaining your home’s major systems –electrical, plumbing, roofing, flooring – is more important than cosmetic additions to the kitchen. I am going to assume that your home is already safe and sound. Having a home inspection done before listing your home is a wise move.

Although you may have to spend some cash to check off all items on this list, money spent on a minor remodel in a kitchen typically returns 80 to 100% — a better return than money spent in other areas of the home. So, go ahead, gussy up that kitchen!

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Improving the Kitchen with Cabinet Light Fixtures


The Light in your Kitchen is probably the most important and valuable piece of the design. It bring out your cabinets and countertops, it illuminated the work area for better view of your New Kitchen. Our designers always recommend improving your lighting with fixtures inside your Kitchen Cabinets. Here are some tips for choosing your under-cabinet and in-cabinet light fixtures.


There are a number of factors to consider when selecting under-cabinet task lighting and cabinet interior accent lighting. Features to consider include energy efficiency, color and strength of the light, and cost of the installation.

The types of light sources typically used in cabinet and under-cabinet installations are light-emitting diodes (LEDs), halogen lights and fluorescent lights). Each comes in a range of cool and warm colors, and all more efficient than traditional incandescent bulbs.

If you will be in your home for a while, LEDs are hands-down winners. Initial cost will be highest, but the long bulb life (20 years!) and high energy efficiency will pay it back in two or three years. LEDs are dimmable (with LED-compatible dimmer switches), and come in bars, strips and spots.

Less expensive fluorescents are only dimmable with special ballasts, use more energy than LEDs to product the same light, and may take a few minutes to reach full brightness when turned on.

Halogen bulbs, the least efficient of the three, are often used for high-intensity spotlights, burn hot, are fully dimmable and have no warm-up delay.


For task lighting across your countertop, bars or strips are best. In a new wiring installation, your labor costs may be lower with LED strips, but if you are replacing existing fixtures, you may find bars to be a more cost-effective solution. Install the light fixtures near the front edge of the wall cabinets to minimize glare. Pucks work well as accent lights.

Get tips on using light rail trim in your kitchen design. For detailed information on under-cabinet light sources, contact one of our designers to get a demonstration on how we do Lighting.


In the kitchen pictured above, LED spots light circular work zones, leaving perimeter countertop surfaces in shadow.

In the built-in buffet pictured above, under-cabinet LED tape provides a soft, uniform wash of light across the counter. The fixtures are gracefully concealed by a trim light rail.

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