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Kitchen Design: Best Cabinet Woods

August 4, 2016

Best Cabinet Woods

You’re deep into your kitchen design, and know you want French doors with wood frames. Or maybe your heart is set on traditional shaker cabinets, or a one-of-a-kind etched design.

What all high-quality cabinet doors have in common is their wood frames. However, how do you know which woods are the most durable and suitable for your environment?

Genuine wood (as opposed to bamboo or manufactured wood) make the best kitchen cabinets because they’re sturdy and moisture resistant, much like trees in nature. With so many high-quality woods suitable for kitchens, part of the decision is a personal one.

For example, if you love the look of dark wood but your kitchen is on the small side, lighter woods can make the room appear bigger. Your home’s theme (such as rustic versus modern) also can dictate wood choices, because a knotty alder works better in a traditional home than a contemporary one.

And you can always paint wood so that the natural grain, knots and color are moot points!

“Wood” You Rather …

The most popular cabinet woods are maple, hickory, oak, cherry and pine. Oak has maintained its status as the most popular for several years, but all five of these options are abundant and readily available. Oak is a favorite because it’s the simplest to finish or stain and comes in a variety of natural colors, from light beige to dark chocolate. It also offers a variety of pronounced grains, so it’s a natural statement piece in your kitchen.

Cherry is a little softer, but still more than tough enough. It’s more versatile than oak, but does come with the highest price tag. The myriad natural colors, including the famous deep red, along with the fine grain, make it a popular pick for many homeowners. It fits in well with many styles, including mid-century and contemporary, and can even work in rustic environments, providing warmth to any room.

Maybe Maple for Kitchen Designs

Two primary types of maple are used often for cabinets, including soft and hard. Soft options come in silver and red, similar to cherry. Darker maples in this category are from sugar or black maple trees, and offer a harder wood. Dark maples are similar to oak, but lighter in color. However, maple is easy to stain and will turn just about any shade while still letting those natural grains shine through.

Hickory is by far the toughest American wood, and offers a wide range of colors from white to deep brown. It stains well, and multiple species are abundant.

Pine is a soft wood that can dent easily, but many homeowners fall in love with its knotty look. It’s perfect for cabins, and it’s the most affordable option.

To customize your cabinets and achieve the kitchen design of your dreams, contact Swirl Woodcraft today.