Face Your Kitchen
Your Guide to Kitchen Cabinet Refacing

Refacing Your Cabinets for a Transitional Kitchen

by Melissa Bullard
Face Your Kitchen Columnist

Sometimes, one particular kitchen style doesn't really fit your house. If you're refacing your kitchen cabinets and can't find one style that's really you, then perhaps you need to consider a transitional kitchen. Transitional kitchens are an excellent option for those who like both the clean lines, light colors, and simplicity of contemporary kitchens, yet also appreciate the craftsmanship, depth, and detail more often present in traditional kitchens. So whether your traditional kitchen needs to be more contemporary or your contemporary kitchen needs to be more traditional, if you're getting ready to reface your cabinets, consider these steps toward a transitional kitchen.

For Traditional Kitchens

  • Refacing your kitchen cabinets? Choose flat cabinet doors without any ornamentation. If you prefer a cabinet door with a little bit of detailing on the front, choose a Shaker style or something similar and make sure all lines run straight vertically and horizontally.
  • When choosing cabinet hardware for the door and drawer fronts, avoid knobs; go for straight handles without any decorative touches.
  • Choose a lighter color of wood veneer, such as maple, or consider painting your cabinets white, grey, or black. Neutral tones often mark a contemporary kitchen.
  • In the market for appliances? Consider stainless steel. Stainless steel brings a touch of contemporary to traditional kitchens, and often looks sleek and stylish when paired with traditional kitchen cabinets.

For Contemporary Kitchens

  • Refacing? Then go for more traditional-looking cabinet doors and drawers. Choose deeper colors in traditional materials such as oak, maple, or cherry. Look for cabinet doors with detail in their styling, and feel free to choose ornate kitchen knobs or handles. The only limits are your own tastes and what best matches the rest of your kitchen.
  • A backsplash is a great way to add color and texture to your kitchen, and it can change your kitchen from stark contemporary to warm traditional. The more colors and textures you incorporate, the more traditional your kitchen can become.
  • Redoing the floor? If your kitchen refacing involves new flooring, then consider choosing tile with depth in its color and pattern, traditional linoleum, or wood flooring. Just make sure that you go for variety in coloring and pattern; after all, you're trying to get rid of clean contemporary lines.

There are no rules when it comes to creating a transitional kitchen. Just make sure you've got the right balance of simple, clean lines, with the warmth and furniture-like styling of a traditional kitchen, and you're headed toward a kitchen that's a perfect blend.

About the Author
Melissa Bullard earned a Bachelor's degree in English Literature, then a Master's Degree in Spanish Language and Literatures from the University of Nevada, Reno. She has taught writing, literature, and Spanish classes, and is currently working as a fre

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