Custom Kitchen Cabinets Vs. Stock Cabinets

Whether you’re formulating the beginning stages of your dream kitchen renovation project, or you’ve progressed into the critical decision-making stages than affect the aesthetics and personality of your build, you’ll inevitably be met with the burning question: should you select stock cabinets or go all-in for custom cabinets to personify your new culinary space?

When it comes to the custom cabinets vs stock cabinets debate, there are pros and cons to each option, both revolving around affordability, style, function, and the unique energy of the end result. In this post, we’re diving into the custom vs. stock cabinet deliberation, and noting the facts we believe to ring true.

Stock Cabinets

Simply put, stock cabinetry is prefabricated, manufactured, or ready-made – mass produced in standardized sizes and predictable shapes in a conglomerate factory, meant to be shipped out quickly to buyers at a moment’s notice.

As these cabinets are modular by nature, there is little to no customization available to customers – how it’s offered by the manufacturer is what you receive in your home.  A distinct disadvantage to buying stock cabinetry is the perceived lack of identity in the cabinets. There’s never going to be a human touch ingrained in their creation, and the lack of warmth and personality – we believe – is very noticeable.

Second, to mundane character, another disadvantage is a lack in the quality department. Mass produced stock cabinets are sourced from cheap and lacklustre building materials and are typically manufactured on a large scale with the intervention of many machines and very little attention-to-detail. This translates to poor build quality, compounded over less than ideal materials – and ultimately, to a poor quality cabinet overall with little chance of wowing a buyer or standing up to 10-15 years of persistent kitchen use.

Advantages of stock cabinets include great affordability and typically fast delivery times.

  • Standard Wall Cabinet Width: 12 inches
  • Standard Base Cabinet Width: 12, 15,18, 24, 30, 36 inches
  • Standard Base Cabinet Height: 36 inches (including toe kick and countertop)
  • Standard countertop depth: 25 inches

Custom Cabinetry

The world of custom cabinetry means allowing your imagination to run wild, your kitchen to reflect the personality and grandeur of its creators, and to match the rigid structural parameters you’d expect from your ultimate dream kitchen.

Custom cabinets are purpose-built to the buyer’s exact specifications, so as a general rule, they can be just about any shape or size the buyer wishes them to be. Let’s break it down a bit further:

Custom cabinet shopping usually begins by a homeowner selecting a standard base cabinet size and adding the custom features and details that one would want. Custom buyers benefit from high-quality construction processes from their manufacturers, high-quality wood selections, joinery, and finish work. They can expect high-end features like durable upscale hinges, and further to the contractual details you’d expect — custom cabinets are hand built by trained professional cabinet makers and carpenters.

To them, cabinet making is an art, and the personality and spirit that shines through a custom cabinet is evident; they’re painstakingly crafted by hand, and built to be a lasting piece of your home that is able to stand up to the heavy kitchen abuse you throw at it.

Buyers benefit from being able to select custom:

  • Wood types
  • Colours
  • Finishes
  • Shapes
  • Size
  • Function

The laborious nature of custom cabinetry means their construction will inevitably take longer than the speed-focused approach of stock cabinets — craftsmanship takes time — both in terms of manufacturing, and delivery.

  • Custom Cabinet Width: Fully customizable
  • Custom Cabinet Depth: Fully customizable
  • Custom Cabinet Height: Typically 36 inches (including toe kick and countertop)

What the discerning homeowner receives by selecting a custom cabinet, for their kitchen, over its stock cousin, is a dedication to quality, a reputation of ingenuity and manufacturer expertise, and the freedom to visualize and create the kitchen that suits the tastes of the home, and its corresponding lifestyle. Win/win.

Ready to get started on custom cabinetry for your home? Reach out to us and we’ll get you started!

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