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If you are in the market for new cabinets, you may be pleasantly surprised! With all of the improvements to functionality and updates in style, every homeowner can have a kitchen that works for them and enhances their lifestyle.

The Styles Have Certainly Changed

By far the most popular style of cabinet is no longer traditional but it is Transitional Shaker in white, according to Zach Stone of Wellborn Cabinets. Plain and simple, these beautiful cabinets are a favorite regardless of the style of the home.


Though woods don’t change, there are some new looks. Check out the character varieties of cherry or maple. They have the added interest of knots or stress. Traditional varieties of choice are still maple, cherry, hickory, and oak. Value minded customers will find the durability and quality of MDF (medium density fiberboard) to be a viable option.


Colors have a wide range from bright and reflective like poppy red to rich and traditional like Caldwell green or creamy white. Natural stain finishes give a more country look while the solid colors are popular for transitional styles, French café, and farmhouse cottage. Gloss acrylic finishes have a purely modern appeal and can really make a room pop. Finishes are an easy way to tie your cabinetry in with the look you are seeking. Finishes can help define your style!


Cabinets no longer just hold your stuff – they bring your stuff to you. The new design features no longer require you to clamber up a step stool or get down on your hands in knees to reach an item. Ease of accessibility is made with ease in mind. Easy to use knobs like C style cupped handles are popular but, drawers are available to open with just a gentle push and wall cabinets can be ordered to open with just touch.

Built in systems allow you to open cabinets with just a touch from your hand or hip. Need a pot or pan? Roll out shelving or drawers are a huge help. The Hanging Pullout Organizer holds lids under the top of the counter creating space and ease of access. One of our favorites is the Easy Access dynamic double shelving units. The unit is mounted in an upper cabinet. With an easy tug the shelf slides out and drops bringing the upper shelf within easy reach. All can be found through Wellborn or Hafele.


Everyone loves the extra space a corner countertop creates but no one loves corner cabinets. Advances in Lazy Susan designs make stored items as easy to reach as pulling out a multi-level interior shelf. Or, consider the ease of a cabinet insert like the Blind Corner Cabinets by Hafele. The cabinet door is opened and with a little pull the entire contents comes out on a shelf system.


New cabinets can be equipped with light for function and beauty. Open the drawer or cabinet and a light comes on or leave a light on in a glass paneled door to display special dishes or collections. Lighting below the toe kick or under the upper cabinets are popular features. Zach Stone states that planning your lighting early and incorporating your lighting plan into your cabinet order makes it a much easier installation later.

Smart Features:

We did like the camera in the pantry idea that we saw at the @KBIS20 show. You can look in your pantry to see what you have while standing in line at the grocery store. You can find a selection at Best Buy. We also liked Sensate the voice activated kitchen faucet offered by Kohler. Whatever technology you are interested in, try to anticipate incorporating it so that access for wires and power are available.

Think through the technology available before buying. Determine if it is truly useful and beneficial not just trendy. Will you use it? Who will service it? Will it be worth the time invested to learn how to use it, update it and keep it in good working order? If not, then it is not worth the money invested. We find that the first generation of any product is typically not the best. Do I really need to be on the cutting edge of technology that will soon be outdated?

The Big Picture

So now let’s imagine that you are preparing supper in your new kitchen. You enter the kitchen surrounded by your favorite color in the blue transitional cabinets you chose. You open the pantry closet and as you do the shelves slide out to meet you. You gather what you need and reach for the drawer with the utensils. With just a slight bump of your hip the drawer opens to reveal the well-lit contents. You set the utensils on the counter and open the lower door to find pots and lids. An easy pull out caddy brings the lids into easy reach. Finally, you need some spices from the cabinet above. Opening the door, you reach for the handle that brings the shelves down to you. You are really enjoying your new kitchen layout and wondering,” why didn’t I do this a long time ago!

Shop Wellborn’s Inspiration Gallery and you will find no shortage of choices and ideas.


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