What Exactly Does “Custom Cabinets” Mean?
So you’ve been shopping around for kitchen cabinetry and you notice that just about every place that you’ve looked at is advertising that they do custom kitchens. On the surface, that sounds really good, but what exactly do they mean when they say “custom” – and do all of these providers mean the same thing when they say custom?
In the world of kitchen cabinetry, there are three basic categories: stock, semi-custom and custom. The difference between these choices can be compared to the differences in getting you lunch from a vending machine, ordering it at a restaurant or having your own personal chef.
Stock cabinets are pre-built units that come in standard sizes. They are an economical choice and can be delivered and installed reasonably quickly but the customer will be limited in their selection of sizes and styles. This is like the vending machine option – you have some choices, but not an abundance of them.
Semi-custom cabinets are not built until an order is received. They come in a variety of configuration choices and the customer is given a variety of options that can be “customized” to the buyer’s preferences. This allows for more customer choice, albeit still within the confines of a pre-set catalogue. Some of these options include custom front, increased or decreased depth or width, matching interiors or extended stiles. This is like the restaurant option where the customer is given a “menu” of choices.
Custom cabinets can be compared to having your own personal chef – if you can imagine it, you can probably have it. Custom cabinets are usually constructed by local cabinet shops which are equipped to produce all elements of the cabinet including the box, fame, doors and drawers.
Custom cabinets are the most flexible, and personal option. The cost is also usually more, but you will get exactly what you want and because you are not restricted to standard sizes, a custom cabinet maker can optimize your storage space.
When Custom Is Not Custom
Some companies that advertise custom cabinets do not manufacture the cabinets themselves but rather order them from a supplier and assemble and install them. This ultimately means a greater risk of error as the customer does not get an opportunity to directly express her wishes to the cabinet maker. If there are errors, it may result in lost down payments and/or added time as materials travel back and forth from the warehouse.
It may also mean that the customer is more limited in their choice of materials and design – despite the fact that the company is advertising “custom”.
At Stutt Kitchens, we are involved in every step of the process from consultation to design to manufacture to installation. Our designers consult with you to understand both your needs and your sense of style – the result is a beautiful, high quality kitchen that is unique to you and your home. We take pride in the fact that when we say custom, we deliver custom.
Stutt has the materials and the expertise to make your dreams come true.