The material you choose for the exterior of your cabinets will greatly impact the style of your kitchen.
Below are some of the pros and cons of a variety of choices.
Maple is a very popular choice for cabinets. They make up about 60% to 80% of the kitchen cabinet market. It has a tight even grain that makes it ideal for painting. A light to mid- tone stain is best. Dark stains tend to absorb unevenly and can appear blotchy. Ask your kitchen designer about how mineral streaking may affect the overall appearance.
This wood is very durable and works well with a wide range of stains and glazes. Cherry takes stain well a features a rich palate of colors from deep red to reddish-browns. As it ages it usually darkening and reddening as it matures.
Oak is a wide-grained hardwood that has a rustic, rough-hewn appearance. The color varies widely but the two most common used for kitchen cabinets are red-oak and white-oak. Oak is an especially strong material and its natural characteristics make it a highly stylized choice.
Hickory is a strong, heavy hardwood. It has a fine grain pattern with a wide range of coloring. The irregularities in hickory, makes this wood cabinets unique and aesthetically bold.
Alder is another hardwood that is a reddish brown wood species that is a little softer than the choices listed above. Alder stains well and can take on a wide range of looks.
In the cabinet industry “rustic” describes wood with natural imperfections such as knots, mineral streaks and where uneven areas are left alone. All of the above listed wood species are available in its rustic form. Rustic is the choice for those looking for a naturalistic style.