Builders’ General Complete Guide to Cabinetry


When it comes to home improvement projects, cabinetry can make a big impact. Cabinets are essential for storage and organization, but they also play a significant role in the overall aesthetic of your home.

At Builders’ General we offer a wide range of cabinetry, tile, countertops, backsplash, hardware, vanities, closets, build-ins and are happy to provide recommendations for appliances, flooring, lighting and more.

With so many options available, making the right choices can feel overwhelming but don’t worry, Builders’ General is here to help! Whether you’re a Homeowner, Contractor, Developer, Remodeler or Designer, our experts will patiently and professionally explain everything you need to know about cabinetry, from choosing the right materials, finishes & hardware, to staying on budget.


Cabinets can be made from a variety of materials, each with its own set of benefits and drawbacks. Some popular options include:

Wood: Solid wood cabinets are the most durable and long-lasting option, and they can be painted or stained in a variety of colors and finishes. However, they are also the most expensive option.
Veneer: Veneer is a thin layer of wood that is applied to a substrate, such as plywood or MDF. It can mimic the look of solid wood at a lower cost, but it is less durable.
Laminate: Laminate is a synthetic material that is made by bonding layers of paper or fabric to a resin core. It is a budget-friendly option that can mimic the look of wood or other materials, but it is not as durable as solid wood or veneer.
Metal: Metal cabinets can add a sleek, modern look to your kitchen or bathroom. They are durable and easy to clean, but they can also be noisy and show fingerprints.

When choosing a cabinet material, consider the overall aesthetic of your home, your budget, and your lifestyle. For example, if you have young children or pets, you may want to choose a material that balances durability with ease of cleanup and maintenance.


Cabinets come in a variety of styles, ranging from traditional to contemporary. Some popular styles include:

Shaker: This style features a simple, clean design with a recessed panel door. Shaker cabinets are a popular choice for a variety of home styles, but they are particularly well-suited for homes that have a traditional or transitional aesthetic. Shaker cabinets are known for their clean lines and simple design, which make them a great fit for homes that have a classic, timeless feel. Some home styles that pair well with shaker cabinets include:

  • Craftsman: This style of home is known for its emphasis on handcrafted details and natural materials. Shaker cabinets complement this aesthetic perfectly, as they are often made from wood and feature simple, elegant lines.
  • Colonial: Colonial homes are typically symmetrical and feature classic, understated design elements. Shaker cabinets are a natural fit for this style of home, as they offer a similarly clean and timeless look.
  • Farmhouse: Farmhouse-style homes are all about warmth and simplicity. Shaker cabinets work well in these spaces, as they offer a straightforward, unpretentious design that complements the rustic charm of a farmhouse.
  • Traditional: Traditional homes are characterized by their classic, refined look. Shaker cabinets are a great choice for these homes, as they offer a clean, elegant design that complements the traditional aesthetic.

Raised panel: This style features a door with a raised center panel and a decorative edge profile. Raised panel cabinets are a classic and versatile option that can work well with a variety of home styles. However, they are particularly well-suited to traditional and transitional style homes.

Traditional homes typically feature a more formal and ornate design, with details such as crown moldings, wainscoting, and rich wood finishes. Raised panel cabinets can complement this style by adding depth and texture to the kitchen or bathroom, while also providing a sense of sophistication and elegance.

Transitional homes, on the other hand, blend elements of traditional and contemporary styles to create a balanced and modern look. Raised panel cabinets can work well in these homes by providing a traditional touch that balances the clean lines and simple designs often found in contemporary spaces.

Beadboard: This style features vertical grooves on the door panel to create a classic, cottage-style look. Beadboard cabinets are a popular choice for adding a touch of charm and character to a home’s kitchen or bathroom. Beadboard is a type of paneling that features a series of vertical grooves or “beads” running the length of the panel. Beadboard cabinets can be incorporated into a variety of home styles, but they are particularly well-suited for the following styles:

  • Cottage Style: Beadboard cabinets are a perfect fit for cottage-style homes, which are known for their cozy, quaint, and relaxed aesthetic. Cottage-style homes often feature light and airy color schemes, soft textures, and natural materials.
  • Farmhouse Style: Beadboard cabinets are also a great choice for farmhouse-style homes, which feature a rustic, simple, and timeless aesthetic. Farmhouse-style homes often incorporate reclaimed wood, natural stone, and other organic materials.
  • Coastal Style: Beadboard cabinets can also be a good fit for coastal-style homes, which are known for their light and airy feel, natural textures, and soft color palettes. Coastal-style homes often feature natural fibers, light woods, and a mix of blues and greens.
  • Traditional Style: Beadboard cabinets can also work well in traditional-style homes, which are known for their classic and timeless aesthetic. Traditional-style homes often feature rich, dark woods, ornate details, and a mix of classic patterns.

Flat Panel: This style features a flat, smooth door panel with no raised or recessed details. Flat panel cabinets can work well with a variety of home styles, but they are particularly well-suited for modern and contemporary homes. These homes often feature clean lines and minimal ornamentation, which is a perfect match for the sleek, streamlined look of flat panel cabinets.

That being said, flat panel cabinets can also be used in traditional homes, as long as they are paired with other elements that help balance out their simplicity. For example, you might pair flat panel cabinets with ornate hardware, decorative molding, or other traditional design elements to create a more balanced look.

Glass Front: Glass panel cabinets can be an excellent choice for a number of reasons:

  • Visual Appeal: Glass panel cabinets provide a visually appealing and elegant look to any room, especially when combined with interior lighting that accentuates the contents inside the cabinet.
  • Displays: They provide a way to display your treasured items or collectibles in a way that is protected yet visible. This can be especially useful if you have valuable items that you want to display without the risk of damage or theft.
  • Organization: Glass panel cabinets can help you stay organized by providing a clear view of the contents inside. This allows you to quickly and easily locate the items you need, without having to rummage through drawers or shelves.
  • Hygiene: Glass panel cabinets are easier to clean than traditional cabinets. This makes them a great option for kitchens, bathrooms, or any other space that requires frequent cleaning.
  • Light: Glass panel cabinets allow natural light to filter through, which can help brighten up a room and make it feel more spacious.
  • Customization: Glass panel cabinets can be customized to fit your specific needs and preferences. For example, you can choose between different types of glass, finishes, and styles to create a unique look that matches your home decor.

Overall, glass panel cabinets are a stylish and practical choice for any home, adding both beauty and functionality to your living space.

Builders’ General will help you choose the cabinet style for your environment. Together we will consider the look and functionality of the cabinets for the perfect combination.


The finish of your cabinets can also have a significant impact on their overall look and durability. Some popular finishes include:

Stained: Stained cabinets showcase the natural grain of the wood and come in a variety of colors and finishes.
Painted: Painted cabinets offer a more customizable look and can be painted in any color or finish.
Glazed: Glazed cabinets have a subtle antique look and add depth and dimension to the cabinet surface.
Distressed: Distressed cabinets have a rustic, worn look and can add character to your home.

Similar to choosing the material of your cabinets, when choosing a cabinet finish, consider the overall look of your home and the style of the cabinets. Keep in mind that some finishes may require more maintenance than others.


The hardware you choose for your cabinets can also have a significant impact on their overall look and functionality. Some popular hardware options include:

Knobs: Knobs are one of the most common types of kitchen cabinet hardware. They are small, rounded handles that are typically attached to cabinet doors and drawers with a single screw. Knobs come in a variety of materials, including metal, ceramic, glass, and wood, and can add a decorative touch to your cabinets.
Pulls: Pulls are another popular type of kitchen cabinet hardware. Unlike knobs, which are small and round, pulls are longer and more elongated, making them easier to grip. They can be attached horizontally or vertically and come in a variety of materials and styles, such as sleek metal or rustic wood.
Hinges: While not as visible as knobs and pulls, hinges are an important part of kitchen cabinet hardware. They allow cabinet doors to swing open and closed, and come in a variety of types, such as concealed, exposed, and European-style. Hinges can be made of different materials, such as stainless steel or brass, and can be finished to match the rest of your kitchen’s hardware.

We understand every project is unique and with so many options to consider the path forward isn’t always clear cut. But don’t worry, once again Builders’ General is here to help you. We have five showroom locations throughout New Jersey in Little Silver, Long Branch, Edison and Toms River as well as Freehold by appointment only.

For all of our Contractor, Developer, Remodeler and Designer Friends

We invite you to treat our professional showrooms as an extension of your business at no cost to you. Send your client or accompany them for a free design consultation. We don’t discriminate on the size or budget of your project. Whether it’s new construction, remodels, a refresh, estate or apartment, Builders’ General designs for everyone.

When you work with us, you get peace of mind knowing that we’ve been in business for over 90 years – that means reliable! So Builders’ General will be here for you long after you place your order. It also means our manufacturers trust and respect us…any issues, we work it out with the manufacturer to ensure your satisfaction.

So stop by one of our five convenient locations throughout New Jersey, or contact us today.