Thursday, March 29, 2012

Reface Your Kitchen & Make It Look Custom For Less

You HATE your kitchen! If it wasn't for the fact that you'd starve and die if you didn't cook there, you'd never even enter the room... or maybe your dislike is not quite as extreme. Perhaps you'd just prefer it look a little less dated or maybe you despise oak and long for a more modern feel. Maybe your dream kitchen is a Tuscan villa with ornamental details and a massive crown molding. You just wish you could change those cabinets but you know that ripping them out for the quality that you desire is just too expensive. BUT, what if your cabinets can be redressed as the cabinets that you desire and you could save thousands of dollars doing it? Maybe that dream kitchen is not so far out of reach after all, with the right partner in your remodel.

J&M Custom Millwork & Remodeling has been in the dream kitchen business for over seventeen years. My company, Fashion House Interior Design Co, LLC works very well with them creating full custom kitchens to refacing kitchens in Arizona. Not only do they offer custom cabinetry to span your home, but they've perfected the refacing project in every way. Most refacing projects take between 3-5 days to complete and cost 30-50% less than replacing your cabinets. Once completed, your kitchen looks like full custom cabinetry, yet not one cabinet has been removed.
Before, this client's cabinets were lifeless natural maple with recessed doors. They had just redone their countertops, thinking they'd love their kitchen once they added them...but they didn't!
They were just too plain, too blah! Had they decided to replace their cabinets, they would have stayed with the exact same layout (there's really no other way to design this space and their storage was more than enough for their needs). They just hated the look. They longed for a Tuscan retreat that fit in with the rest of their home's decor. They got a price from Home Depot's refacing division and it was $18,000 to reface their kitchen, without the bells and whistles they desired! Even worse than that, at Home Depot you have to pay 100% up front. Sure, you can put it all on a credit card (if they approve such a charge), but you'll accrue interest and turn your kitchen into a major expense. 
Together, my client and I designed the details of the kitchen of her dreams and with minimal additional expense we added an overly dramatic crown with corbels, full extension roll out shelves in all base cabinets and appliques to create her look.
Most stock and semi-custom cabinets have a recess on the sides (used to flush out your cabinets when attaching to a wall) Custom cabinets are completely flush. We add plywood panels to achieve a look of full custom cabinetry. 
And here is the end result! Gorgeous and rich, this once 90's modern maple kitchen is reborn as a Tuscan paradise.
She loved it SO much that we then removed her island and created a custom piece to complete the transformation- for just $2,200. Oh, did I forget to mention... this kitchen refacing project cost my clients just $8,500 plus their custom island. NO ONE in this area can do this size job for this price. My clients know, they tried!

You too can have such a transformation to your space for far less than you ever imagined! Take a look at another one of my client's remodels and see if you may just need the high quality that J&M can offer you!
Natural oak raised panels before...
Chocolate shaker panel after... with glass and marble mosaic tile and new granite for just under $10,000! That's 42" high cabinets, new tile splash, new granite counters and a higher height bar counter at the island, new stainless undermount sink and new 6" stainless steel pulls for their doors and drawers.

Need help to put your look together? Contact me at 480.227.1832 or call Jay at 480.206.9183 to schedule your no hassle, free consultation today. In less than 4 weeks, your kitchen can look just as fabulous!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Frameless Kitchen Cabinets- A Strong Choice

Being an interior designer who also designs kitchens for my clients, I often get to have this conversation about the difference between framed and frameless cabinetry. Yes, there is a big difference, but it's not the one that so many deceiving cabinet manufacturers have led you to believe.

Up until the early 1990's kitchen cabinets came in only one construction- framed. Cabinets had 2 sides, a top and bottom, a back and a wooden frame in front on which your doors hang. This was just how it was done. Then, a revolution in cabinet construction soon began to take over in the American market, Eurpoean, frameless construction. On the East Coast, frameless cabinets took off as a popular choice for maximizing space within your kitchen. Frameless cabinets offer you full access to every inch of space inside your cabinet walls. There is no center stile (the strip most homeowners hate in the middle of their cabinet doors), blocking you from placing wide items into your cabinets. Frames also prevent you from filling your cabinets with the much larger styles of plates that have become a mainstay in our kitchens. Wall cabinets are 12" deep plus your door. A cabinet frame is typically a 1/2" thick, which you lose from the interior of your cabinet. You also lose a anywhere from a 1/2" to a full inch of width on your drawers when attached to a framed cabinet. It doesn't sound like much but it all adds up. Even more than that, for me, it's about the look.

If you look at framed cabinets today, you will notice a huge trend- full overlay doors. This means that the cabinet door nearly or completely covers the frame of your cabinet. Homeowners desire the look of a larger door and wish to see less or none of the frame surrounding the cabinet. With this trend in cabinetry, what is the point of buying a framed cabinet? Simply put, there is none; unless you ask a stock cabinet manufacturer. Some will lead you to believe that a cabinet's frame adds extra stability to the cabinet and a frameless constructed cabinet is weaker than it's counterpart, but this could not be further than the truth. The structure of your cabinet comes in the construction of the box itself. A stronger box will have thicker sides and be screwed together versus glued and stapled, as many cheaper cabinets are assembled. A frame doesn't do much other than add to the cost of your cabinets, as a frame is made of solid wood, versus the cabinet itself, which is made of either melamine or plywood. Other than a frame, the only other part of a cabinet which is actually "SOLID" wood is the door. Please don't ever listen to anyone who tells you a cabinet is made of solid wood. Plywood is not solid wood. Very little of an all wood cabinet is solid wood- the same amount of a cabinet made of laminate or melamine (the frame and/ or the door only). 

So why isn't everyone making the switch to frameless cabinetry? Well, lies, misinformation and old habits die hard are the main reasons. Cabinet manufacturers continue to make them because homeowners continue to buy them and homeowners continue to buy them because manufacturers continue to make them, presenting them as the "stronger" option. It's just been done this way since the beginning of time and that's how our industry works- good, bad or indifferent. (I still struggle with the grip that Tuscan furnishings has on Arizona residents... sheesh, enough already ((but that's another post)). As for me, I prefer to educate my clients on the differences, showing them the construction of the custom cabinetry that my cabinet company, J&M Custom Millwork & Remodeling creates and allow them to make their own decision. Once they get to see the benefits of a larger interior, more space and the beautiful aesthetic of full size doors, most select frameless cabinetry on their own. They save a little money and get the look and space they desire and a gorgeous kitchen with full access. After all, you're paying for those cabinets, might as well get use of every nook and cranny in them!

If you'd like more information about kitchen cabinetry or are in the Arizona's Phoenix- metro area and planning to remodel your kitchen, please take a look at Jay Dunbar can save you money on your kitchen or bathroom remodel, while delivery impeccable quality, high end cabinets at a great price point. 
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