Face Your Kitchen
Your Guide to Kitchen Cabinet Refacing

How One Homeowner Customized Her Kitchen with New Cabinets

by Joe Cooper
Face Your Kitchen Columnist

Replacing existing kitchen cabinets is a popular choice to create a new kitchen ambience without paying the tens of thousands of dollars that a complete kitchen remodel might cost. Home and Garden Television says that making even minor kitchen renovations can offer a return on investment over 80%. In the following interview, Virginia resident, Sharon McLeod, reveals that remodeling with custom kitchen cabinets can be the perfect solution for a renovation.

Before After
Kitchen Cabinets Before Kitchen Cabinets After

FYK: Tell me about your original kitchen and why you wanted to change it.
SM: Oh, it was terrible. The worst part was the color. It was this whitewashed wood, and it looked terrible against the beautiful yellow we chose for the kitchen and living room. The countertops were old and stained in places... I just knew I wanted custom cabinets. My husband said he didn't mind it, but I know it bothered him too.

FYK: How did you find a contractor to install your custom kitchen cabinets?
SM: We used a custom cabinet company about an hour away, who we found through some friends. We'd been to their house and seen their kitchen, and I knew I wanted the kitchen they had. The company was great; all the guys were very professional; and they did a great job on the kitchen.

FYK: How long did the project last?
SM: It took about two months, but we took our time. We drove to the custom cabinets place, looked at samples, took some home... Then the installation took a little longer because we did new countertops, a new sink, and other stuff.

FYK: It looks like you lost some cabinet space. In the first picture, cabinets extend to the right above the bar area.
SM: You know what, technically we did lose some cabinet space, but we just got more organized with what we have. With custom kitchen cabinets, you can do whatever you want. They give you all sorts of kitchen cabinet ideas. I have a slim cabinet next to the dishwasher where I keep all my baking sheets. I had mini-shelves and racks and lazy Susans built in wherever I wanted them. So we don't miss the cabinet space, and having the room space so open is a nice new feature.

FYK: Did the project go smoothly?
SM: We decided to take some trips while they put the new cabinets in, so we really weren't around all that much. While we were there, there were a few hiccups of course. There was some wall damage behind some of the lower cabinets, so we had to repair that. But we expected to find some things like that, so it wasn't bad. Overall it went very well.

FYK: Would you have done anything differently?
SM: The only thing I would have done is replace more cabinets in the house! I would love to have custom cabinets done for my laundry room, the bathrooms, and even the garage. I just love the cabinet ideas our company came up with. The only way to go is custom, I think. We had to do custom in our kitchen because of where our appliances are and where I wanted things.

FYK: Are you happy with the way you kitchen looks now?
SM: Oh, I love it. My husband loves it too. It's like we have a brand new kitchen. We kept the floor, kept the walls and everything, but having custom kitchen cabinets is really like having a new kitchen.

FYK: Would you recommend custom kitchen cabinets to others?
SM: I would definitely recommend custom kitchen cabinets... will say that they do cost more than regular kitchen cabinets or stock cabinets. But if you really want specific things in your kitchen, like I did, you really have to go custom. They will build your cabinets around your kitchen and add unique things here and there.

There are many happy homeowners who have experienced the joy of a new kitchen. Like Mrs. McLeod, everyone wants their kitchen space configured differently to fit their specific needs. Custom kitchen cabinets are the best way to achieve the right functionality and give your kitchen a brand new look at the same time.

About the Author
Joe Cooper is a freelance writer. He holds a bachelor's in American Literature from UCLA.

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