We ask a lot of our cabinets. They are so prominent they often define the atmosphere of the room. Finishes, hardware and joinery must stand up to repeated movement and daily use. And they have to satisfy our functional requirements for storage and accessibility.
Some quality factors are felt more than they are seen. Premium, full-extension, soft close drawer slides and hinges move smoothly, provide superior access and never slam shut or hang open. Just give the door or drawer a push and the hardware will do the rest. Meanwhile, multi-layer finishes applied in clean spray booths with fussy inter-coat sanding create durable, furniture-smooth surfaces.
The importance of the right finish cannot be overstated. Considerable time and skill are needed to achieve just the right color, sheen and special effects such as burn through or distressing.
Materials matter too. Stiff, hardwood plywood is ideal for sturdy euro-style boxes that lack face frames. However, Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) provides a better substrate for painted recessed-panel doors. Because MDF lacks grain and expands uniformly, paint will not crack or separate at joints. But solid wood is preferred for natural finished face frames, drawer faces and door frames.
Fine joinery adds to both the beauty and strength of quality cabinetry. Drawer boxes formed with dovetail joints literally interlock while creating an eye appealing detail that evokes old-world craftsmanship.
Quality extends through installation. While it is important for cabinets to be perfectly straight, level and plumb, floors and wall surfaces seldom are flat and true. The solution is to shim and custom scribe each cabinet so it fits tightly against the wall. This takes a lot more time and skill than inserting a filler strip or a bead of caulk, but it’s what furniture quality cabinets demand.