Shaker cabinetry is the most common style of kitchen cabinet today and is characterized by the square recessed panel on the door. It got its name from Shaker style furniture, which features simple, clean lines and emphasizes practicality. While many traditional styles have become less popular over the years, Shaker has only become more widespread.
A simple, classic style, this cabinet design is popular in part for its versatility. Shaker cabinets go well with many decors, including traditional and modern. Shaker cabinets are a bit of a chameleon, becoming industrial with a concrete countertop or country with a butcher block.
Although originally a plain design, many variations of the original style have emerged, including one with slightly beveled edges. Shaker cabinets may have matching drawers with recessed panels or be combined with flat-style drawers.
With glass or glass-front cabinets, the center panel is replaced with glass, providing a great opportunity to show off beautiful kitchen tableware you’re proud of. With their clean, streamlined look, these cabinets often feature perfectly in more modern, minimalist kitchen designs.
Glass cabinets are great for smaller rooms, as they add depth to your space and make it appear larger. Having transparent glass also makes it simpler to find things. There are many decorative enhancements available like diamond panels and stained glass.
Unlike open shelves, glass cabinets have the added benefit of protecting your tableware from dust and grease. The glass itself, of course, will still need to be cleaned. Smoke and grease from cooking can begin to accumulate on the glass, creating a visible film or discoloring the glass. Glass cabinet doors also can’t be opened or closed roughly, as this may cause them to break — although installing a high-quality glass or soft close hardware can help prevent this.
Flat-paneled cabinet doors, also known as “slab doors,” are a simple, minimalist design that can work well in contemporary or modern kitchens. Popular in Europe for decades, this style is now catching on in the United States. They are typically available in wood and the cheaper and more versatile laminate.
One of the greatest advantages of flat-paneled cabinets is how easy they are to clean or refinish. Because of their featureless design, they are also great for showcasing knobs, drawer pulls or whatever hardware you choose.
Because they are relatively easy to manufacture, flat cabinets are among the least expensive options — but the cost will also depend on the wood, finish, hardware and other factors.
Beadboard, sometimes referred to as tongue-and-groove, is a style of construction in which vertical planks are fitted together. In between the planks are small ridges, also known as “beads.” They give a relaxed look and go well in cottage-style kitchens, and are often installed in the back of cabinets as well as on the front.
Beadboard cabinets are available in a variety of widths. Today, beadboard is commonly made out of a single, solid piece of medium-density fiberboard made to look like separate planks of wood fitted together. It is this very look that helps this type of cabinet often look so fabulous in more rustic kitchen designs.
The cathedral cabinet is similar to the arch style but fancier. Its arch is indented and steeper, resembling a cathedral cut. It works with traditional, ornate and Gothic interiors, and it looks best when the ceilings are extra tall.
One drawback to this style is that it is hard to update. As it is not as popular as Shaker or flat-style cabinets, it may make your home harder to sell. With a more old-fashioned and elegant kitchen design, however, these cabinets can be absolutely stunning.