5 Ways to Improve Your Cabinets by Refacing them (and save big $)


Whether you are considering a new kitchen or bathroom, one of the major expenses in remodeling jobs are the cabinets. 

Everyday, perfectly good cabinets are demolished and trashed simply because the owner became tired of them or they wanted a newer style. 


You can save some seriously big bucks simply by refacing your cabinets. 

What is Refacing? 

Think of refacing as a facelift for your cabinets. It’s the door and hardware of the cabinets that become dated. When we reface them, the doors and hardware are changed and then reinstalled. 

The remaining parts of the cabinet (the base structure) can be painted or sanded and re-stained in order to match the newly refreshed doors. No one would know that you didn’t splurge on brand new cabinets. 

Let’s look at the 4 ways you can reface your cabinets and get a dramatic new look. 

  1. Painting

Some folks don’t consider painting a true reface, but it actually is. This is especially true if your cabinets are not painted now. By removing the cabinet doors and hardware, you can achieve a completely new look. 

For painting, all the doors and hardware need to be removed. Every surface is well sanded. If minor repairs are needed, they will be done at this time. Homeowners choose the paint color(s) and hardware. (By the way, painting the upper cabinets one color and the lower cabinets a different color is a huge fashion trend) All surfaces are now painted. Once dry, the doors and new hardware are installed. In a matter of days, you have a fresh, fashionable kitchen for a fraction of the cost of new cabinets. 

  1. Veneer Refacing

If you enjoy the layout of the kitchen and don’t really need new cabinets but want to update the look, veneer refacing is right up your alley. This is especially true if you have the basic oak contractor wood doors. 

For example, cherrywood cabinets are incredibly beautiful, but they are also incredibly expensive. Welcome to the world of veneer! This process involves placing a thin layer of a more expensive wood over the less expensive (or no longer desired) cabinets and doors. The hardware and hinges will be replaced with the beautiful new style of your choosing. The inside of the cabinets and drawers will remain unchanged, unless you request something special. 

This process will make your refaced cabinets look like more expensive cabinets for a fraction of the cost. 

  1. Custom Designed Real Wood Doors

You might think that words “custom” anything, but especially wood, is synonymous with “expensive.” This isn’t really true, however.  The great thing about custom designed real wood doors from a wood worker is the nearly endless choice of possibilities! A few examples might include: 

  • Adding or replacing custom moldings or glass panels into the cabinet doors
  • Having the woodworker create a unique design of cabinet door just for you so you can enjoy a kitchen or bath that is one of a kind
  • If your kitchen doesn’t have real wood doors, you can have your woodworker make them for you, or you can have them add moldings or unique designs to wood doors you found elsewhere 

The possibilities here are limited only by your imagination!  Pick out some photos of cabinets you adore or would love to have but they lack one small detail and ask your woodworker how he can create this look for you! 

  1. Redesign Your Kitchen Cabinets Without Buying New Ones

This “reface” job is a bit different than simply changing materials or colors. 

If you’ve always wanted glass doors to display your antique glasses but don’t have room for a china cabinet, or if you love the look of open shelving and your kitchen lacks this feature, this section is for you! 

Pick out photos of the designs you want. It’s OK to say, “I want these glass cabinets, this shelving design, but I want all of this in dark walnut.” Your custom woodworker is here to please! Explain which cabinets or shelving you want and where they should go. The worker will draw out a sketch (or make one on his tablet or computer) so you get the exact kitchen you want. Cabinets are removed, refaced, stained, and put back into place for a fraction of the cost of new cabinets. 

When it comes to refacing your kitchen or bathroom cabinets, there is almost nothing your custom woodworker cannot create. Get the kitchen or bath of your dreams while saving a ton of money in the process!