General Woodcraft Blog

Designing a New Kitchen to Meet Your Budget

Posted by Chris Nolan on Wed, Feb 20, 2019 @ 01:02 PM

Long white kitchen pixabayThere are kitchen designs to meet nearly every budget need. Somewhere between, “Hey, I think I’ll nail a shelf over there for my plate and cup” and, “Did you see the article in Architectural Digest about my new kitchen?” covers just about the full budget range for new kitchen designs. Knowing what your kitchen design budget range is, can be a very important decision.

If you trust your kitchen designer, let them know everything you are looking for in your new kitchen, including your budget range. This will help a savvy designer include all your ‘must have items’ into your kitchen design. A trustworthy, experienced designer knows how to stretch your kitchen design budget. They know how, and where, they can save you money.

Over the years, we have designed new kitchens for many wonderful clients throughout southeastern CT and Rhode Island. We have specialized in semi-custom and custom kitchen design for decades. Many of our clients’ children have grown and become clients, too. Kitchen design trends continue to change and so, too, do our client’s needs.

But over the past ten or so years, we have seen new kitchen designs shift away from traditional kitchens towards more transitional and modern styles. These newer kitchen design styles are often as much in keeping with changing lifestyles as they are with design preferences. Work stations in a kitchen? Who knew? Laptops and notepads for homework at the kitchen counter during snack time? No way! Your children have grown up and left home? Our kitchen designs can reflect your changing lifestyle and your design tastes. We can help.

We have also seen kitchen design budgets change from $100,000 and higher to a more modest budget range recently. In many cases, $30-$40,ooo is the new $100,000 kitchen. Much of this trend is a result of property values. Many of our clients want to re-invest in their homes appropriately, without going upside down on their mortgage and home value.

Smaller kitchens can present a whole different array of design challenges. Often there's a whole lot of functionality that needs be built into a smaller space or a more modest kitchen budget.  Regardless of the size and scope of your new kitchen, 

Designing a beautiful kitchen with the appropriate functions to make your kitchen the best that it can be takes an experienced kitchen design professional. We have the experience and sophistication to help you design a new kitchen to meet your taste, lifestyle and budget needs.

Are you ready for a new kitchen design?


Tags: kitchen budget, 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

Tips on Planning Your Dream Kitchen

Posted by Lisa Kobar on Wed, Sep 05, 2012 @ 09:00 AM

transitional white kitchen white slab quartz island

So you’re finally going to do it!  You really are… you’re going to re-do your kitchen… Yeah!  You’ve been gathering ideas for months (or if you’re like most people, probably years).  You keep the obligatory stack of magazines with sticky notes fluttering on page after page of gorgeous photos beside your bed (what better way to slip into kitchen dreamland).  You’re constantly flipping through pages saying to yourself… “I wish!” …. Well, the truth is, sometimes that’s all you have to do.  If you can “wish” it, you can most likely make it happen.  That’s not saying that you don’t have to be realistic, honest and open to ideas or suggestions.  Once you’ve embraced the idea that you can have your “wish” kitchen, the next step is find the right design professional to help you make it happen.

Custom painted kitchen cabinetry with stained island kitchen cabinets

“Oh no!” you think to yourself, “I can’t afford a kitchen professional”…. The truth is you really can’t afford to not work with a kitchen design professional.  You’ll find that most kitchen designers, kitchen design centers and custom kitchen companies offer their professional design services as part of the entire kitchen “package”.   That’s not to say that you won’t be “paying” for their efforts, these services are usually incorporated into the total cost of your project.  Most designers are banking on the hope that once they’ve wowed you with their ideas, you’ll sign on the dotted line to purchase cabinetry, maybe counter tops and other services from them.  On the flip side, if you don’t feel it’s a good fit and you choose not to hire that company to design your new kitchen, unless you’ve agreed to pay a design fee, non-refundable deposit, etc… you can usually walk away with nothing out of your pocket.  But, hopefully you’ll have ideas of what you do and don’t want in your new kitchen.  The key is for you to find that design professional that’s the right fit for you and your project.

custom wood vent hood with molding is an elegant feature

A good kitchen design professional will bring many things to your experience.  They are a wealth of design knowledge.  They’ve seen trends come and go.  They’re color analysts, babysitters (discussing framing beads while baby Emma sits on their lap), they’ll go to bat for their clients with bullish contractors, they find the perfect counter top to go with that dreamed-of baking area, they’re part time marriage counselor (often sitting between a husband and wife at the critical moments)…. But above all they will always be cognizant of how you live, how you envision using your new kitchen, and what your realistic budget is for the entire project.  A good kitchen designer will help steer you towards the products that fit within your budget, the finishes and styles that you’ve been envisioning in your new kitchen and the amenities that will create a highly functional space for the way you live.  Once you’ve found that professional, and you will….get ready for an exciting experience… one that will lead to many years of happy times and cherished memories in a beautiful new kitchen that you “wished” into reality…..


Tags: kitchen budget, cabinet design, kitchen cabinet design, planning your kitchen, kitchen planning tips

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:

Kitchen Design

Visit our Kitchen Design Studio

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