To Have Glass Doors in Your Kitchen Cabinets or Not

One common question we are asked here at RTA Cabinet Store is if glass doors in a customer’s kitchen is a good idea or not.  While we can give some great advice, there are a few things to consider before buying your kitchen cabinets and the requisite doors that go with them, including whether to go with solid wood or with glass inserts.

Either way, on most of the lines we stock, RTA kitchen cabinet doors with glass inserts are available.  For an example, check out our Shaker Hill line of RTA kitchen cabinets:  https://www.rtacabinetstore.com/RTA-Kitchen-Cabinets/shaker-hill-kitchen-cabinets/.

A Small Kitchen

If you have a small kitchen, then glass insert doors are a great idea.  The reason behind this is that our brains perceive the amount of space in a kitchen based on what we can visually see.  Imagine a small room that is filled up 1/3 with cardboard boxes.  Suddenly, the room seems much smaller.

On the other hand, if those boxes were replaced with transparent plastic boxes, you would perceive that much of the space was restored.  It’s the same way with kitchen cabinets, and having glass door inserts lets you have the perception that the space inside the cabinet is available as well, increasing the illusion of space, while in reality, the space available is exactly the same.

How Much Space Do You Have?

If you have oodles of space, then things can go either way.  Having a lot of space means that you can afford to have some of your cabinets with glass door inserts in them.  We don’t often recommend having the entire kitchen with glass inserts, as oftentimes people want to store things inside them that are not very aesthetically pleasing, and therefore behind a door.

But if there are a pretty good number of cabinets, and you can afford the space to arrange beautiful cups, plates, etc. in plain sight, then it may be a good idea.  On the other hand, with that much space, you would only need to take into consideration the aesthetics of having a glass insert door, and not the illusion of extra space provided.

Just keep it in mind, that buying kitchen cabinets isn’t something you do every day, so make sure you have the insider knowledge you need to get the best cabinets at the best price. The Consumer’s Guide to Buying Kitchen Cabinets tells you what you need to know—click the link to download your copy now!

 

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Make Holes in Your Countertop!

Creating a Freestanding Kitchen DesignJust as a disclaimer, we don’t advise taking out a drill or a hammer and making holes in your countertop, unless you know what you are doing.  But during the design of your new kitchen, especially one made with RTA kitchen cabinets, you can plan things to have a couple of really useful timesavers in the form of holes in your countertop!

The Trash Cabinet

Most people tend to put their trash cans in a cabinet these days.  It hides the can, the trash, and seriously cuts down on the smell.  If one is smart about it, you can also have odor absorbers in the cabinet so that the area doesn’t become odiferous over time.

Take your trash cabinet to the next level by putting a hole in the countertop above it.  This is especially great if you are using a stone or hard resin countertop.  With this type of convenience, you need not open the cabinet every time to throw something away, but rather brush things right into the conveniently placed hole.

Get a custom rubber seal for it, such as the type that is found at the entrance to your garbage disposal, and presto, good looks, no odors escaping, and an easy way to throw things away, including reducing wear and tear on your cabinet!  Check out an example of a pull out waste container cabinet accessory, here: https://www.rtacabinetstore.com/RTA-Kitchen-Cabinet-Storage-Solutions/.

The Composter

Do you compost or keep organic waste for animals?  This is a great way to have a small container attached to the underside of your kitchen countertop, where you can just sweep in what you need to.  Combine this with the trash hole in the same cabinet, and you have a one stop waste area!

The Cutting Board Countertop/Drain

This is a little more involved than the other ideas, but so, so worth it.  There is a new trend of cutting an area, either a shallow depression or a hole with supports spanning underneath it, and putting in a heavy custom-made cutting board.  Near a sink, this can be fantastic, as you can have the cutting board area built with a drain for liquid drainage and easy spray cleaning.  The pipe would connect directly into your sink’s drain pipe.  This works great as well with the composter hole solution.  Talk about an efficient kitchen!

Think it sounds great and want to dedicate a cabinet and countertop to these ideas?  Make sure you avoid getting ripped off, making mistakes, and losing money, when you buy your kitchen cabinets and countertops. The information you need is in The Consumer’s Guide to Buying Kitchen Cabinets; just click the link to download your free copy!

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DIY Kitchen Remodel: The Galley Kitchen

Attractive young adult couple looking at house plans.Kitchens come in every shape and size, but some designs are better than others. If you have small kitchen and want to maximize the space and functionality, then a galley kitchen might be right for you. When you think of a galley kitchen, you probably think of a ship, and you are on the right track. If you’re thinking about a DIY kitchen remodel and have a small space for your kitchen, then a galley design might be right for you.

What Is a Galley Kitchen?

Earlier, we said that a galley kitchen is reminiscent of a ship because a ship’s galley is much narrower than a traditional kitchen. It’s the same with a small kitchen space. A galley kitchen consists of a single wide lane with appliances and cabinets on either side. It helps maximize efficiency and control the flow of traffic through the kitchen. It follows the design idea of the work triangle where the three most used appliances (stove, fridge and sink) form a triangle in the kitchen. Often, the stove is on one side and the sink and refrigerator on the other.

Timeless Kitchen Cabinet Design

Unlike most kitchen cabinet designs, a galley kitchen utilizes vertical instead of horizontal cabinets. If you have a galley kitchen, then you’ll probably have a mix of open and traditional shelving. Vertical shelving is most often used because if makes use of the space better than horizonal shelving. The open shelves are used for easily grabbed items.

Thankfully, you don’t have to worry about a ship teetering back and forth in the waves and can have open shelves. If you run out of shelving room, then you can hang a pot rack on the ceiling. It fits the design space and makes a unique addition to any kitchen.

Organization Is Key

When you have a galley kitchen, organization is an important part of keeping the kitchen functional and efficient. The vertical cabinets often have baskets that hold necessary utensils and cooking tools. Since space is at a premium, get rid of any appliances that you don’t use much. You may love that juicer that you got for Christmas three years ago, but if you haven’t juiced anything, then get rid of it because it’s taking up important space. You can always sell it on eBay.

The goal of a galley kitchen is to have as much functionality as possible while maximizing the space available. It’s important that countertops and cabinets don’t have clutter, or you’re defeating the whole purpose of having this style of kitchen.

If you’re considering vertical kitchen cabinets, then check out our free design tool to see how they might look in your kitchen.

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Kitchen Remodel Help: Glass Front or Open Cabinets

Rustic_Brown_KitchenA kitchen remodel isn’t easy because there are so many decisions you have to make from the type and style of your new stove to the color and material of the kitchen cabinets. We all need kitchen remodel help every now and then, so we’ve put together this guide on choosing between glass front or open cabinets for your kitchen. A remodel is often a drastic change from the original kitchen, so people experiment with new ideas and concepts. If you’re debating between these two cabinet door types, this guide is for you.

Benefits of Glass Doors

When you decide that you want open cabinets or glass front doors, you’ve decided to show the contents of your kitchen to the world. This is a wonderful thing if you’re an expert in organization and have various dishes that you want to show off.

Glass doors can provide you with that see-through feel, but still allow for protection that open shelving can’t. For example, if you have cats or other animals in the house, then the glass front doors can keep them away from the dishes. The cats can get into open shelves and knock down glasses and other dishes to the floor. Glass fronts can also provide a modicum of privacy that you can’t get with open shelving.

Benefits of Open Shelving

One of the biggest advantages to open shelving is cost savings. The cabinet doors are some of the most expensive aspects of the cabinets, so with no doors, you’re saving money. Cabinet doors are also one of the most difficult decisions of RTA kitchen cabinets. There are so many types and designs to choose from that not having them is a much simpler decision.

If you have a vintage kitchen, and it’s filled with old kitchen utensils, etc., open shelving is a perfect way to show them off. Open cabinets are designed to display the items you’re storing, so they should be something special.

The Downsides of Glass and Open Shelving

The biggest issue with both types of timeless kitchen cabinets is the extra cleaning necessary. If the dishes displayed are rarely used, then they’ll gather dust and even cobwebs, which are an eyesore.

If you have any kitchen storage items such as canned goods and snack foods, you’ll have to either display them along with your vintage dishes or get creative with storage. Glass doors can hide them a little depending on the door design, but not open shelving. The other option is to have a mix of standard cabinet doors to cover this type of storage and open cabinets to highlight your dishes.

If you’re interested in knowing more about stylish kitchen cabinets, then check out our free guide. It’s got everything you’ll need to start your kitchen cabinet replacement process.

 

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What Do You Do When You Hate Your DIY Kitchen Cabinets?

The idea of DIY kitchen cabinets seems great on paper, but the execution can be a complete disaster. By DIY, we’re not talking about RTA, but start-from-scratch kitchen cabinets where you’re cutting and assembling the boxes yourself. It’s a bold move, and many people underestimate the difficulty.

When you’re cutting the cabinet boxes and making measurements, one small error can throw off the entire structure. What happens when you spend all that time creating your cabinets, but hate the end result?

The Bold and the Proud

First of all, you should give yourself a pat on the back for even trying. You knew when you got into it that making timeless kitchen cabinets from scratch was going to be difficult. There aren’t many people that try it. Most go the preassembled route or simply hire someone to put the cabinets together for them, but not you.

You went the route of the true artisan. Raw wood and a dream of what your cabinets could be. Many would have given up, but not you. The end result may not have ended up how you like, but you should be applauded for the effort. You’re a true pioneer and we salute you.

Get That DIY Feeling with RTA Kitchen Cabinets

Either you decided to build your own cabinets out of a love of woodworking or to save money. The great thing about RTA cabinets is you can still have low costs and get your DIY fix as well.

With RTA cabinets, everything comes unassembled, but all the components are there. You still have to build everything and install them, but you don’t have to worry about box measurements. Everything is uniform and already done for you. You just have to build it.

You’re also saving money because you don’t have to pay for them to be assembled in the factory. You get the feeling of DIY without the worry about improper measurements.

Use the Lumber for Other DIY Kitchen Ideas

You’ve got all that excess lumber now since you dismantled your DIY cabinets and replaced them with the RTA ones. What are you to do with it? Why not repurpose it for other kitchen projects? You can create a hanging pot holder so save room in your cabinets. You can build kitchen shelves for your décor or for spices and other kitchen necessities. There are many ideas for useful things that you can do with all that lumber you used for the failed kitchen cabinets—don’t just throw it away or let it sit in your garage. Get back on that DIY horse and build.

If you’re interested in seeing how our cabinets would look in your kitchen, try our kitchen design tool. It helps visualize the cabinets, so you have an idea of what they look like.

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Kitchen Cabinet Care Tips and Tricks

Woman Cleaning CabinetEverything in life needs care and maintenance, from your car to your carpets to your RTA kitchen cabinets. The truth is, despite operating in pretty much the harshest environment in your home, kitchen cabinet care is pretty easy. Here’s what to do to keep them in tip-top shape!

Periodic Cleaning

No matter how neat and clean a cook you are, the biggest enemy of cabinets is the oil and grease that is inevitably aerosolized and integrated in steam as you cook. There’s nothing you can do about that. Splatter shields do help, and a genuine outside-vented range hood helps a lot, but creates its own cleaning and maintenance issues, but at the end of the day, every so often, you’re going to need to clean your cabinets.

When you do, any time you’re using a new cleaning product or method, it’s always good to test it first on a small, inconspicuous area, but here are the safest bets.

Since you’re dealing with oil, you need some way to cut through it. The easiest and gentlest way of doing this is to use a mild solution of soapy water. Dish soap is a little bit harsher than hand soap, but also leaves less residue, so that’s our recommendation. You’ll want to use cloth or a sponge, never anything scratchy like steel wool.

If your cabinets have a stained natural-wood finish, then once you’re satisfied, go back over them with furniture polish or furniture oil to restore the wood’s natural oils and protect them from moisture and humidity.

Occasional Deep Cleaning

No matter how often you clean, oils and dirt are going to sneak into nooks and crannies, especially around hardware and hinges. So once in a while (we’re talking every few years here), it’s a good practice to partially disassemble your RTA cabinets. At least remove the visible hardware so you can clean it independently, and clean the wood around its outlines. Removing the doors isn’t a horrible idea, but usually isn’t strictly necessary.

While you have the hardware removed, it might not be a bad idea to consider replacing it. It’s not too expensive, and can give your kitchen a mild facelift and a refreshing new look, plus it’ll save you time and energy compared to cleaning the old hardware. Again, it isn’t necessary, just a thought.

Maintenance and Touch Up

Accidents happen, and things wear out. Thankfully, RTA Cabinet Store carries just about everything you’ll need to repair minor damage and wear. Have a drawer that’s sticking? Replace the drawer glides. Is a door smacking noisily when it’s closed? You can replace or install soft-close dampers.

For cosmetic damage like dings and scratches, we have wax pencils and repair kits in stock for every single finish color we carry. They’ll fill in the missing material to correct the damage, with exactly the same color as the finish. Just make sure to thoroughly clean around the area first!

Should you decide it’s time to simply get new cabinets, our friendly team of professionally trained kitchen design consultants is more than happy to help you pick out your next dream kitchen’s design. Sign up for your free, no obligation design now!

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