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Quick Guide: Getting Custom Cabinetry For Your Next Renovation




Whether you’re getting a kitchen, bathroom, or home office remodel, cabinetry can make or break the space. It’s a key part of the renovation process that can boost satisfaction with your space. In the National Association of Realtors’ 2022 Remodeling Impact Report, it was found that of people who were interested in a remodel: 


  • 30% wanted to upgrade worn-out surfaces, finishes, and materials

  • 20% wanted to add features 

  • 16% just wanted a change


As you consider a potential remodel for any of these reasons, cabinetry should be part of that. Whether upgrading the finish or materials, making your space more usable, or making a change, the right cabinets can add a lot of value. 


However, if you haven’t done a cabinetry remodel, you might not be familiar with the style, door type, or other considerations. Working with countless custom cabinetry projects, the Raleigh Woodworks team is used to some of the terms and concepts that consumers may not be familiar with when considering a project. With that in mind, we’ve put together a guide on custom cabinetry and what you need to know to get started with your next project. 

Read on for the full guide!


Choosing the Right Style




Cabinets come in a variety of styles. Considering whether you will design the space to be modern, traditional, or rustic, you must also evaluate what cabinet style fits best. Just like any part of your kitchen, bathroom, or whatever room you’re redoing, the look of the cabinets can make or break the aesthetic. 

Some common style options that we offer at Raleigh Woodworks for cabinet doors include: 


  • Flat panel- Also known as “Slab” cabinets, these are completely flat and don’t include any beveling, creating a sleek, modern look. These work well with contemporary kitchens, where you don’t want to draw as much attention to the cabinets. 

  • Shaker Style- Using a square edge and a box-shaped appearance, these are similar in style to other shaker furniture. With a recessed center and raised border, this is more of a classic style and works well for rustic or traditional aesthetics, though it depends on the finish and paint of the cabinets. Because of the minimalist design, it can also work well for more understated, contemporary designs. 

  • Raised Panel- With a raised panel in the center and beveling around the border, this is great for more classically or rustically designed rooms. This panel style is familiar to many, and depending on the finish and paint, it can evoke a sense of comfort and home. 

  • Recessed Panel- While shaker-style doors also have a recessed center panel, the classic recessed panel style has more of a complex bevel, making it look more like a traditional style. These doors may be a little lighter than other cabinet doors, which is something to keep in mind for the feel and weight of your cabinets. 

  • Mullion Frame- With various designs and types of glass frames, these can add a decorative and romantic feel to your cabinetry. This also allows you to see the inside of your cabinet to show off your glass and fine china collection. Depending on the color and design, these can add a sense of elegance or tradition. 

  • Open Frame- Alternatively, if you don’t want different sections within the frame, like mullion cabinets, these cabinets can show off your cups and plates right through a rectangular glass window. These simple designs are great for modern and minimalist designs in bathrooms and kitchens. 

  • Beadboard- If you’re looking for a more rustic look, the beadboard in these cabinets is featured in a center panel. The textured pieces of beadboard surrounded by a smooth wood frame add more visual interest and tie in well with other wooden details in your space. While traditionally used for more rustic designs, they can also be used as a statement in modern and contemporary designs. 


This is a brief overview of these designs, and depending on your vision for your kitchen, bathroom, or recreation room, different options might work better. At Raleigh Woodworks, we always work closely with our clients to provide the best options for them. However, beyond the style, you also need to think about function. 


Picking Door Types For Your Aesthetic 



Beyond the style, you also need to consider the door types or how the cabinet doors are set on the cabinets. How the doors are set and arranged can dramatically affect the look and feel of your cabinets as a whole. 


Essentially, there are three types of cabinet doors: 


  • Full Overlay- These completely cover the cabinet face so that you see as little of the border between cabinet doors as possible. If you see the frame between doors, it’s typically very little, between 1/4″ to 1/2″. This design is good for a streamlined, more modern effect. 

  • Partial Overlay- Also known as the “standard overlay,” is a more classic look and was previously an industry standard. With this overlay, you will see 1″ to 2″ of frame between the doors. This style can also cut costs because the drawers and door fronts are smaller and use less material. 

  • Inset- Associated with Shaker design, these cabinet doors are inset and sit inside the frame. This cabinet design style has been around for years and is typically used in more traditional or rustic designs. Because these need to be designed to fit the frame and have a special hinge design, these take more advanced craftsmanship. 


Of course, each door type can depend on your vision for the space and what type of doors you’re the most comfortable with. At Raleigh Woodworks, we’re always ready to work with you on the door type and the style to fit your needs and overall aesthetic best. 


Considerations For Different Types of Renovations 


Of course, no matter what style or door you choose for cabinets, it can depend on the space you’re renovating. Whether you’re considering a bathroom, kitchen, office, or entertainment space will determine how you want to think about cabinetry. 


At Raleigh Woodworks, we use various high-quality materials, such as birch, poplar, oak, MDF, and HDF, to ensure the durability and longevity of our cabinets. We can help you determine the finish, look, and feel you’re looking for. We also use Sherwin Williams paint products and Minwax stains to offer a wide range of paint and stain colors, or you can provide your own custom color for a truly unique look.


As you consider cabinetry in each space, ask yourself questions like: 

  • What colors or shades do I want to see in this space? 

  • Do I want it to feel more rustic? More modern?

  • What will I store in this space? 

  • What will I want to clean up? Is there anything in danger of staining?

  • Are there any shapes or silhouettes that I’m drawn to?


As you answer these questions, you can start thinking about what you want in the design space and talk to your carpentry team about it. Plus, as you sketch out what you want, if you partner with a team like Raleigh Woodworks, you can get renderings as you develop the design. 


Once you’ve thought about the design and coordinated with contractors, you’re ready to start the cabinetry project for your space. 


Ready to Get Custom Cabinets?


Of course, this is just an overview of selecting custom cabinetry for your Raleigh, NC, home. If you’re ready to start your next renovation process, we’re prepared to help. Serving both Wake and Johnston County in North Carolina, we transform ordinary houses into extraordinary homes with stylish and functional carpentry. From whole home renovations to storage and cabinetry— our multi-talented team is dedicated to adding style and functionality to any space.


With over two decades of experience in the commercial industry, our team handles project management, cabinetry, custom furniture installation, and more. No matter the type or size of the project, we are your one-stop connection for all your carpentry and woodworking needs. Contact us today to get started!




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