To Store It All: Cabinetry

A critical element of any well-designed kitchen, cabinetry is composed of the face or door style, the box or interior, and the hardware or knob and pulls. Anthony Maucieri, president of East Hill Cabinetry in White Plains, says perhaps the most prevalent trend in kitchen cabinets today is customization at all price points. “The cabinet used to be like a Chevy, with just a few door and handle options,” explains Maucieri. “Now, the increased automation of factories has made both customization and furniture-grade quality available at more accessible price points, with even the most inexpensive line coming in five different colors with six door detail choices and so much more flexibility in wood species and finishes at the midrange.” He says now it’s all about personalization and tailored design. “We’re seeing more eclectic kitchens and never really do a strict French country or cookie-cutter Georgian any more.” Even clients with deep pockets, he notes, are choosing semi-custom cabinets rather than custom because they now offer so many choices.

In general, East Hill’s clients want streamlined styles, with clean lines and flat panels predominating, even in older homes. “Everything remains more understated coming out of the Recession,” says Maucieri. “We are not doing heavy ornamentation or carving, or legs and arches,” he explains. “And we’re using mostly flat-panel doors for a transitional look, in primarily solid colors rather than glazing or multi-step finishes.” Landau’s clients are similarly inclined. “For transitional cabinetry,” Landau says, “99 percent of the time it’s a white painted-wood Shaker door with a square picture and simple recessed center.”

And Westchester clients still want wood cabinets, primarily painted maples or cherry, according to Maucieri. “The types of woods haven’t changed,” he says. “It’s the way we cut, stain, and treat the wood or mix different types of woods in the same kitchen.” One exciting new way of taking a traditional wood and having it look more up to date, he adds, is quarter-sawn oak. “For old oak kitchens, we’d take the tree and cut board out of it. With quarter-sawn, the tree is cut in fours and turned diagonally with the grain in all one direction,” he explains. With regard to color, cooler whites and gray-blue painted or stained wood are very of-the-moment as opposed to warmer, dark browns and earth tones. “Last year, there was a lot of ‘greige,’ or grays with browns,” he notes. “This year, they’re much truer grays and even some blues.” Finally, Maucieri says he’s moved away from highlighting the cabinet hardware and having it appear more distinct. “Now, with all the clean lines, we want fewer details,” he says. “So on a white cabinet, instead of a dark oil-rubbed cup, we’ll use a clean-lined brushed-nickel or stainless-steel knob or pull to blend in more with the  cabinetry.”

Behemoth refrigerators are on the wane; smaller units in more than one place are popular. Here, wine fridges are everywhere—even in the island!


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