A kitchen can often be updated by simply changing cabinet doors and hardware. Learn how to modify the layout to fit new appliances and additional storage.
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Once you have formulated some ideas about what design and style you are looking for, the next step is to speak to your cabinet supplier. Take accurate measurements of the room. Include existing alcoves, room height and width, and heights and widths of windows and window sills. Your supplier may be able to produce a computer-generated design to give you a good idea of what your kitchen will look like.
Some manufacturers have cabinets in stock, but with others, orders may take weeks or even months to come through. Bear this in mind in your overall planning. Coordinating the delivery of materials is crucial to a smoothly running project, so plan well ahead and confirm delivery dates.
Stock and semi-custom cabinets are built to industry standards. If you buy stock cabinets, use the following as a guide to planning your kitchen. The sizes are developed based on an 8-foot ceiling height. Always check with the manufacturer for their sizes.
Shopping for kitchen cabinets offers an abundance of choice. Materials, finishes, door profile, configurations, accessories, and door hardware are just the beginning. Before you dream of your perfect kitchen, you'll need to decide on a budget and whether or not you will be installing the cabinets. Most home improvement stores and retailers offer cabinet installation by employees or referrals to independent installers. If you decide to hire someone for the job, always ask for a referral.
If you are planning to design a kitchen to meet your needs for life, you may want to consider including accessible features. The most important considerations are making sure the doorways are wide enough for wheelchairs, that cabinet and counter heights are accessible, and that there is plenty of room to move around the kitchen. Accessories include push-button garbage disposals near the front of the sink, motion-sensor lighting, and lever door handles. Certified Kitchen Designers and the National Kitchen & Bath Association can help you with the design of your kitchen.