Kitchen Cabinet Wood Options and Finish Colors

Kitchen Remodeling
Cabinets and Countertops
By Alex Mikayelyan October 07, 2021

Some would say that cabinets are the face of your kitchen. They tend to be the most colorful surfaces in the room and are the first visible thing to most people who enter. Cabinets can make or break the kitchen depending on what you do with their color and finish.

Because some of us tend to slam doors, cabinet doors can see a lot of wear and tear over the years. This damages the outer coats of paint, causing chips, cracks, and other kinds of blemishes. This is why it is important to give cabinet doors regular resurfacing and repainting to keep them as fresh as possible, and in turn, keep your kitchen looking bright and new.

Materials

Cabinet Materials Range From Wood to Polyester

Cabinet Materials Range From Wood to Polyester

Everything starts with choosing kitchen cabinet materials. This choice will help you determine which kitchen cabinet types you should install, their finish, and their colors.

Solid Wood

Solid Wood Cabinets Are a Traditional Staple of Kitchens

Solid Wood Cabinets Are a Traditional Staple of Kitchens

It makes sense to start with wood considering how easy it is to fall into the trap of thinking that this is the most popular material for wooden cabinets. While solid wood is up there among the most popular construction materials to build cabinets out of thanks to its durability, wide range of natural colors, and it’s stylishness. However, there are also some downsides. Solid wood is high maintenance and can react negatively to humid climates. Also, it is considerably more expensive than artificial options. But if you have the money and the dedication to install and take care of your kitchen cabinet wood, by all means, go for it.

Wood Veneers

Wood Veneers Are Easy to Repair

Wood Veneers Are Easy to Repair

A more cost-effective alternative to natural wood, wood veneer panels are pieces of natural wood that are glued together. Despite this, wood veneers look almost exactly like natural wood surfaces. The strong bonding agent of the glue keeps all the pieces together, making wood veneers quite durable even with heavy-duty kitchen cabinet hardware installations. An advantage of this is that it is easy to repair when the surface gets scratched. Wood veneer is also lighter than solid wood making it easier to work with. If you have some experience as a carpenter you can even build and install veneer cabinets yourself.

Polyester

Polyester Minimizes Maintenance and Prolongs Durability

Polyester Minimizes Maintenance and Prolongs Durability

Small pieces of pine are mixed with and coated in polyester film. This gives polyester cabinets their signature durability, though it does come at a higher price than other construction materials. Polyester is perfect for anyone looking to minimize maintenance and keep their cabinets looking as fresh as possible for a long time. The one downside to this is that once they do get damaged, polyester surfaces are somewhat difficult to replace.

Medium-Density Fiberboard (MDF)

MDF Can Help Personalize Your Cabinets Better

MDF Can Help Personalize Your Cabinets Better

If you have come across wooden surfaces which are smooth with a very small grainy texture chances are it was medium-density fiberboard or MDF for short. This material is composed of wood fibers mixed with resin and wax to produce a light, yet very durable material. Though not very resistant to heat, MDF is the perfect option for stylizing the kitchen and offers a lot of options for personalization.

High-Pressure Laminate

Repairing High-Pressure Laminate Is Extremely Simple and Easy

Repairing High-Pressure Laminate Is Extremely Simple and Easy

High-pressure laminate or HPL cabinets are among the easiest to take care of. They may not be as durable as the other options listed above, but they are very easy to repair if the surface gets damaged.

Finish

How You Finish Your Cabinets Is of Utmost Importance in the Long Run

How You Finish Your Cabinets Is of Utmost Importance in the Long Run

The kitchen cabinet finish is going to play a big part in the texture as well as how they look. There are several kinds of kitchen cabinet finish options available for you to try out and see which ones work best with your interior.

Painted Finish

The Possibilities Are Endless for Painted Cabinet Finishes

The Possibilities Are Endless for Painted Cabinet Finishes

By choosing a painted finish for your cabinets you open up a huge range of possibilities. What makes painting cabinets so great is how you can choose exactly the type of color you want and ensure it complements the rest of your interior. While there is always the risk of the paint chipping and cracking, especially if it is of lower quality, a painted finish is easy to repair.

Varnish Finish

Varnish Is Most Common for Manufactured Furniture

Varnish Is Most Common for Manufactured Furniture

For manufactured furniture, varnish is the most common type of finish. Considering how all cabinets made of natural wood require varnish it is easy to understand why it is so widely utilized. Varnish offers more durability and heat resistance though it is still susceptible to chipping and scratching. A huge selling point for varnish is how it is resistant to yellowing that comes with age. If you want something long-lasting and durable, a varnish finish is your best pick.

Stained Finish

Stained Finish Is Advised O Enhance the Color of the Wood

Stained Finish Is Advised O Enhance the Color of the Wood

Natural wood comes in all kinds of colors and textures which are super attractive in kitchens of all aesthetics and designs. But oftentimes, natural wood color is not as vibrant as you would like. This is why a lot of natural wood furniture is given a stained finish, which enhances the color of the wood and also gives it a protective outer shell. While the color options are somewhat limited, a stained finish can accentuate the color of the wood and make it pop out.

Glazed Finish

Glazed Finish Helps Enhance Color

Glazed Finish Helps Enhance Color

To further enhance the color of natural wood, you can apply a glaze finish over paint or a stained finish. This gives it that gleam and shine that works so well in classic kitchen interiors. While a glazed finish is a little more complicated than its counterparts and may require a professional painter or woodworker to complete, it adds depth and vibrancy in ways that other finishes cannot.

Natural Finish

Natural Finish Brings Out the Color of the Organic Wood

Natural Finish Brings Out the Color of the Organic Wood

If you want to bring out the color of the wood as much as possible, sanding and oiling the surfaces will give you the perfect natural finish. While this means that you have little control over the color of your cabinets the results can create that natural look perfect for biophilic or Scandinavian interiors.

Color

Experimenting With Kitchen Interior Colors Is Always a Good Idea

Experimenting With Kitchen Interior Colors Is Always a Good Idea

Cabinets are the face of your kitchen, so the color that you choose for them will determine what kind of vibe your kitchen gives off. Getting this just right is the difference between a pleasant kitchen that you can spend hours in versus an off-putting one.

Classic Vibrant Brown

Classic Brown Is the Go-to Color for Those Seeking a Risk-Free Option

Classic Brown Is the Go-to Color for Those Seeking a Risk-Free Option

There’s no better place to start than with the classic wooden kitchen cabinets. Nothing is more familiar than that classic rich brown coupled with the cabinet door adornment. While some may say there is nothing special about this aesthetic, many interior designers will argue that the classic wooden look is still very popular and many kitchens have made use of its natural vibrancy.

Mid-Century Modern Midnight-Green

Midnight-Green Is Good for Daring Cabinet Experimentation

Midnight-Green Is Good for Daring Cabinet Experimentation

For a classic look that has been modernized to fit contemporary aesthetics, there is the mid-century midnight-green kitchen. It represents the staples of classic kitchen interiors with Wainscott cabinets. This traditional design feature paired with the more modern muted midnight-green color makes for an interesting juxtaposition of the old and new, bringing two worlds together to form something truly unique.

Scandinavian White

Scandinavian White Is Great for Those Who Seek Brighter Interiors

Scandinavian White Is Great for Those Who Seek Brighter Interiors

Scandinavian interiors are all about being easy on the eyes while keeping the room bright with natural light. Most shades of white go perfectly with Scandinavian interiors, though it is recommended to avoid finishes like glaze or staining, which may cause an unnecessary gleam. Keep it simple and your Scandinavian aesthetic will come together.

Grey and White Combo

Contrasting Grey & White Breaks Interior Kitchen Monotony

Contrasting Grey & White Breaks Interior Kitchen Monotony

Keeping certain aspects of the interior uniform is also important. However, you should break up the monotony with a little bit of contrast. The contrast in the case of many interiors comes in the form of opposite colors. Many kitchens instead of limiting their design to a single color choose to instead feature two or more colors to add some heterogeneity into the room. A very contemporary color combination is a nice muted grey paired with a vibrant white. The colors are simple, complement each other, and create enough heterogeneity without being too distracting.

Modern Classic Blue

Daring Colors Are a Good Fit for Those Seeking Vibrancy

Daring Colors Are a Good Fit for Those Seeking Vibrancy

As with the midnight-green modern classic, you can also use more vibrant colors. Not all contemporary kitchens need to be muted. Some homeowners like to be risk-takers and use colors like rich blues. This pays off with a unique kitchen that is vibrant and eye-catching. Just remember to get a color that speaks to your preferences as well as the rest of your home’s interior. Do not get a color that you do not enjoy seeing as it will get tiresome rather quickly.

Rich Contemporary Red

Red Cabinets Can Serve as the Perfect Contemporary Minimalist Kitchen Interior

Red Cabinets Can Serve as the Perfect Contemporary Minimalist Kitchen Interior

Contemporary design is sleek and minimal, but this does not mean it has to be drab and boring. You can create the perfect contemporary minimalist kitchen, complete with sleek steel handles but includes a bright color like rich red. Complemented with a few black and white details, the rich contemporary red kitchen catches your eyes but does not overwork them.

Bright and Natural Rustic 

Bright and Rustic Offer Smooth, Organic Interior Vibes to Your Kitchen

Bright and Rustic Offer Smooth, Organic Interior Vibes to Your Kitchen

Finishing off with something simple yet very attractive is the rustic kitchen. As much as homeowners prefer the sleek and smooth features of contemporary designs or the complex and ornate design of traditional interiors, the rustic style holds a special place in many people’s hearts. It is warm and inviting, so a good color combination would be a soft wooden hue. It is easy on the eyes, but also gives homeowners just enough room to get creative and make the design their own.

Written by
Alex Mikayelyan

Written by Alex Mikayelyan