General Woodcraft Blog

The General Woodcraft Experience

Posted by Chris Nolan on Wed, Aug 06, 2014 @ 12:00 PM

Lots of my friends and people we meet ask where I work and when I say, “General Woodcraft”, they often swoon and tell me about a wonderful experience they had, or their friends had, or their parents had, or their cousins had or friends of their parents and cousins had.

Lyman Kitchen 08 copy

At first I was amazed that General Woodcraft had such a consistentlykitchen cabinet designs strong reputation. I frequently hear comments like, “General Woodcraft designed a kitchen for us and it is so beautiful! We had it installed a few years ago and we love it as much as today as we did when it was first installed.”  People who bought Ipe hardwood decking from us fifteen years ago often call us up to thank us for such a beautiful and long lasting deck. The list of satisfied customers goes on and on and it continues. I was and continue to be overwhelmed by the positive feedback that we consistently hear from past and present clients.

This customer loyalty did not happen by accident. Satisfying our customers above and beyond their expectations is not the exception to the rule – it is the standard. We call it The General Woodcraft Experience and you just can’t get the same thing anywhere else. When Steven F. Crook, president and CEO General WoodcraftI first joined General Woodcraft in 2008 I was surprised to hear the philosophy of Steven Crook (president, owner and CEO of General Woodcraft). I asked Steve point blank, “Steve, why on earth would you take the time and spend the money to send a craftsman from our woodshop out to make repairs on a job we supplied eight years ago? Clearly we are not expected to or obliged to do this work?” Steve’s response to me, and I’ll never forget it was, “It’s a marketing expense.”  From my perplexed expression Steve could see that I needed further explanation.

Steve went on to explain that General Woodcraft has always gone to great lengths to satisfy its clients - even if it hurts. Word of mouth tools of the tradeadvertising from satisfied customers has been the hallmark of our marketing philosophy and is the biggest reason people continue to come back and do business with us. Any company can write a fancy advertisement or radio spot or TV commercial, but there is no better advertising in the world than lots and lots of satisfied clients. Although it takes years to develop a strong and loyal clientele, Steve’s consistent efforts over many, many years continue to pay dividends.

Satisfying our clients for the short term and long term are a core value of our company. We look forward to the opportunity to share The General Woodcraft Experience with you or your friends - or your parents or your cousins or friends of your parents and cousins.  Come on in and let us design the kitchen of your dreams or the deck of a lifetime.

Please visit our websites for additional information about kitchens, Mataverde decking, wood siding, hardwoods, custom woodworking and more:

Tags: woodworking, cabinets, decking, General Woodcraft

Kitchen Cabinet Hardware: Adding the Bling to your Kitchen Design

Posted by Jennifer Wilson on Wed, Jun 19, 2013 @ 11:30 AM

Adding the Bling to Your Kitchen Cabinets

A while back we talked about how to pick the right kitchen cabinets. One of the last steps in that process is adding the hardware to your kitchen ensemble. Choosing hardware for your kitchen cabinetry is like adding the finishing touches to a custom tailored outfit.

You may not be showcasing your new kitchen on the red carpet, but it still has to look great on every occasion. What good is that strapless Dior without the Harry Winston earrings? None! And your stunning new custom cabinets deserve the same attention to detail. Accessorizing your kitchen is easy if you follow these simple steps.

Contemporary with Contemporary – Traditional with Traditional – Would you wear a vintage suit with a Jerry Garcia necktie? Probably not. So why would you put antique glass knobs on a sleek contemporary cabinet? Choose hardware that complements your cabinets.

traditional kitchen turquoise

Finish Here, Finish There, Finishes Everywhere! – The hardware you choose does not have to match the finishes on all of the other fixtures in your kitchen. But it should not clash with them either. If you are going stainless on appliances and brushed chrome on lighting and plumbing, think about a brushed finish for your hardware or something simple that can make a subtle statement.

traditional kitchen with warm wood upper and lower cabinets

Color Me Colorful – Colored cabinets make a bold statement all by themselves. You don’t have to get crazy with the hardware in a brightly colored kitchen. White cabinets are another story entirely. They provide a clean palette on which any color or finish looks great. So try on a few different styles and see what fits best.

Wood You? – Would you add colored knobs to wood finished cabinets? Why not? The rich tone of oak, cherry or maple cabinetry provides a beautiful background for virtually any hardware. A popular choice is pewter, bronze, chrome, nickel or some other variation of hard metal or even stone. But color adds a unique finish on an old favorite.

modern retro kitchen with warm wood tones

How are they Hangin’? – The doors that is… Custom cabinets are often designed with custom overlays and interior hinges. But if your doors are hung with exposed hinges, make sure that the hinges match the pulls and other hardware. Eclectic is okay when mixing lighting and appliances, but too much variety is overkill.

Shopping for hardware should be as fun as shopping for a fine piece of jewelry. You will have to visit several jewelers and look at different cuts, shapes and styles of precious gems. And yes, you may even have to try a few on for size. But when you find that one, you know the one; the one that catches the light just right and looks amazing with the rest of your ensemble, you will have found the perfect fit!



Tags: cabinets, kitchen cabinet design, kitchen design

Selecting The Right Kitchen Cabinets: Dressed to Kill!

Posted by Jennifer Wilson on Wed, May 22, 2013 @ 11:30 AM

"Selecting kitchen cabinetry is like putting together a special outfit. To get the perfect look, you need to shop within your budget, find appropriate and comfortable clothing, and add just the right finishing touches."


Boutique vs. Budget

The first step in creating the perfect kitchen cabinet design ensemble is to make sure that it fits your budget. Do you have a personal tailor and only shop at Nordstrom’s? If so, you may want to purchase custom cabinets. These will be the priciest, but will fit perfectly and also be made of the highest quality materials and will have enough design flexibility to make sure they suit your kitchen perfectly. If you buy your clothes off the rack, you may be more of a stock cabinetry person. Stock cabinets are available in standard sizes and the most popular finishes. They are great options for do-it-yourself remodels or easy kitchen make-overs. If you fall somewhere in between, semi-custom cabinets may be for you. These mid-level priced cabinets will be easy on the budget but will still allow some flexibility in style and size.

Hard maple cabinetry  contemporary design resized 600

 Sexy, Sassy or Sophisticated?

After you figure out where you’ll shop, put together the outer layer. If you want your cabinets to scream sophistication, choose a solid polished or stained wood. If you want traditional, go with something timeless, like cherry, maple or oak, maybe with some beading or recessed glass. If retro is your style, melamine is still available.

Show a Little Leg… or not

Next, decide what undergarments will be the most appropriate for your new outfit. This is where cabinet door selection and door mounting options come in. Cabinet frames can be completely concealed with full overlay doors, or they can peek through, providing your doors an attractive frame. How you mount your doors is like deciding whether to go strapless or not. The amount of skin you choose to reveal should complement the overall look and feel you are trying to achieve.

crisp white cabinetry and dark wood island are a beautiful combo

Functional and Fashionable

The function of your cabinets should be contemplated like a stunning pair of shoes. They may look fantastic, but what good are they if you can’t walk in them? Cabinets that don’t hold your kitchen appliances, have useless spaces or are out of reach may be breathtaking to look at, but frustratingly useless. Think about how you use your cabinets now and what items you will put into your new ones. Do you want storage drawers instead of shelving for base cabinets? Are high shelves better left open for cookbooks and knick-knacks? If your kitchen is small, take advantage of every nook and cranny by selecting corner cabinetry, vertical storage racks and lazy-Susans.

Dress it Up!

You’re outfit is almost complete. You’ve got your undergarments, your outerwear and you can walk comfortably. Time to put the icing on the cake. The hardware you choose for your cabinetry can be simple and understated or it can say “Check Me Out!” Whether you want to go flashy or fashionable, have fun with your hardware! It is the least expensive part of your kitchen wardrobe and can be changed easily when you tire of the look.

Tags: cabinets, kitchen budget, kitchen cabinet, cabinetry, custom cabinets

Custom Kitchen Cabinets - What are they and can I afford them?

Posted by Lisa Kobar on Wed, Jul 18, 2012 @ 10:00 AM

So you’re thinking about custom cabinets for your new kitchen...what does the term “custom kitchen cabinets” really mean?  To professional kitchen designers it refers to the types and amount of modifications that can be done in a specific cabinet line. Custom cabinets can be built by “hand” in a small shop by master cabinet makers, ordered from a high end manufacturer that offers many modification options, or even bought  from a mid-line manufacturer that can change some of the specifications (height, width, depth…) but not as many as the more expensive lines. 

Sharp custom kitchen cabinet designSo, when you think “custom cabinets”, you are probably thinking “expensive”? Am I right?  While this can be true, instead you could design your new kitchen so that you utilize mostly stock size cabinets with little or no “box” modifications.  By ordering standard cabinets where they make sense, you can save yourself a fair amount of money. You can then “customize” specific cabinets in order to create a beautiful custom cabinet look without having to pay for an entire kitchen full of custom cabinetry. 

If you plan things right, you can save yourself enough money in your kitchen budget to splurge on items that will give you that custom cabinet look and stay on budget... wainscot on your island, glass doors on some upper cabinets, or even a hutch with furniture feet.  All these details will give you the look of custom cabinets without having to use a custom manufacturer.  All it takes is a little research, a good kitchen designer that understands your needs and the patience to work through the details. 

For additional information about kitchen design, kitchen planning, or replacing your existing kitchen cabinetry, please follow any of the links below:

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Learn about our Kitchen Design Process

General Woodcraft, Inc. has an award winning team of kitchen designers in its state of the art newly remodeled Kitchen Design Studio in New London, CT. Click on the link below to contact them today to schedule a FREE one hour Kitchen Design Consultation.

Tags: cabinets, kitchen budget, cabinet design, kitchen cabinet design, kitchen cabinet, cabinetry, custom cabinets, kitchen design, custom kitchen cabinets, cutom kitchen design