One of the most popular cabinet styles is also one of the least complicated. The Shaker cabinet, with its square outer panel set over a recessed panel door, is seen in kitchens all over the Toronto area. In this article, let’s discuss the history of the Shaker-style cabinet, as well as why they are so incredibly popular
Shaker cabinets are one of many kinds of Shaker furniture that was originally designed in the 1800s by the United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing. Known as the Shakers, this group had a strong belief in honesty, simplicity, and utility. Their furniture reflects these beliefs; you can see them in its strong, sturdy, minimalism.
You won’t notice lots of ornamentation or designs on traditional Shaker furniture. In fact, adding metal pulls to these kinds of cabinets is a modern, non-traditional spin on the hardline Shaker style. They strayed far away from decorative pulls, inlays, or any sort of carvings on their furniture, as they saw it as showing excessive pride. In the original Shaker style, the only pulls installed were made of wood.
Today’s Shaker Cabinets
These days, Shaker cabinets have made their way into kitchens that are very traditional, extremely modern, and everywhere in between. White Shaker cabinets with small, round pulls hearken back to the original, simple style that the designers intended. The same cabinets made of dark wood with bar pulls give the look a modern flair. The great thing about Shaker cabinets is that they can be combined with any kind of finishes and materials; they’re extremely versatile.
Speaking of Finishes…
…let’s briefly discuss the various kinds of finishes that one could choose for Shaker cabinets and how each finish will affect the overall look.
Paint — For those who are designing a more modern kitchen, a painted finish will look clean and very contemporary. Talk to your designer/contractor about what kind of wood is best to use for painted Shaker cabinets. Certain woods will expand and contract as they age, and this can cause small cracks to appear in the paint finish.
Burnishing — After a cabinet is painted, a burnished finish can be applied in order to make it look aged. This can be a time-consuming process, as the cabinet must be sanded in order to give it a distressed look before it is burnished. Talk to your contractor for more details about how the process works, as well as the expense involved.
Thermofoil — A laminate finish, Thermofoil is a low-cost, durable finish treatment that gives the look of paint. Rather than solid wood, cabinet makers apply Thermofoil to MDF, or medium-density fiberboard. Manufacturers don’t glue it down (as many people mistakenly assume), Thermofoil finish is applied using pressure-bonding and heat.
Polyeurethane — People choose polyurethane when they want a natural wood look. It also doesn’t hurt that it’s more durable than paint. Where paint can chip or scrape easily, polyurethane can stand up to the wear and tear of daily life without showing signs of damage—all you see is the natural beauty of the wood itself. It looks absolutely beautiful, accenting the natural woodgrain and gorgeous textures.
How Much Do Shaker Cabinets Cost?
In terms of cabinet styles, Shaker cabinets fall in the middle of the price range. Because they’re so simple and don’t require extra molding, that creates a big savings. Which materials and finishes you choose will also determine price. Solid wood will definitely be the most expensive and MDF will be the most cost-effective.
No matter what style of kitchen you’ve been dreaming of, it’s likely that Shaker cabinets will look great installed there. Get in touch with the team at Kitchen and Bath at 905 581-3762 to learn more.
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