How to Choose the Best Style of Cabinet Doors for Your Kitchen

There are countless ways to make the cabinets in your home reflect a design, emphasize a theme, or express certain sentiments for all of your family and friends to enjoy. You could decide on particular colors and make them compliment each other or form stark contrast, or experiment with textures and molding to add unique value to your space. You could accentuate the features of your kitchen that you love, or come up with decorative or spacial solutions that help hide unattractive qualities you can't change. The first step to giving your kitchen a cabinet makeover is deciding on what kinds of styles suit your needs and your tastes.

Below are a few popular kitchen cabinet styles and what they convey about your home:

Flat Cabinets

Just as the name implies, flat cabinets are those that are comprised of a flat surface. When paired with simple vertical pulls or small knobs, these cabinets can be used in many kinds of modern and minimalistic kitchens, and can create an illusion of spaciousness even in cramped areas. Many homeowners choose flat cabinets if they want to show off the texture of the doors and drawer fronts, or if they want to emphasize the hardware.

Raised Panel Cabinets

Cabinets that feature raised panels are classical yet versatile. Eyebrow arches and cathedral arches are popular raised panel designs that are found in many homes across the country often in mid-colored to light-colored woods. Using a glossy white paint or a rich, dark wood with a prominent wood grain can create a feeling of luxury without being too showy.

Glass Cabinets

Another popular design option is when the center panel of the cabinet door is cut out and a glass panel is installed in its place. These doors are especially effective for cabinets that hold collections of expensive dinnerware, ornaments, tea sets, or spirits. Glass cabinets are often used as emphasis doors, and most kitchens that utilize them also encompass other types of cabinet doors.

Distressed Cabinets

Distressing is the process of making new products look older and more worn. While some homeowners initially may not understand why you would want to make your cabinets look aged, the trick in distressing is to add antique or vintage appeal without making the cabinets look less attractive. Distressed cabinets can add a more rugged charm or older, cottage-like feel to otherwise contemporary kitchens.

Inset Cabinets

Inset cabinets are interesting in that they are built to very precise measurements and have no overlay. Most cabinet doors and drawer fronts sit in front of the cabinet frame, but inset doors and fronts slide closed and are flush with the rest of the cabinetry. This creates a smooth surface, and much like flat cabinet doors, can help give the illusion of increased space.

Louvered Cabinets

Louvered cabinets are comprised of a frame and a center panel that is made up of wooden slats. Functionally, these cabinets are great for ventilation purposes and work well in laundry rooms, but they can also look attractive throughout an entire kitchen, and have a high-end appeal. The downside of louvered cabinets is that they are usually fairly expensive when compared to the other styles.

Kitchens are spaces where family and friends come together to cook, eat, and chat with one another, so it's no surprise that homeowners put a lot of thought into their kitchen cabinet styles. Shopping around your local home improvement stores can give you a better idea of what would look best with your existing décor, and you will have the ability to speak to employees who are familiar with the products.