What I Would Change About Your Kitchen Cabinetry Design — Heather Hungeling Design


Heather Hungeling Design | Wentworth Place Project

If you’re trying to create a high-end, luxury kitchen, then you are entirely missing the boat if you don’t do flush-inset cabinetry.

I had clients once that were building a 20,000 square foot dream home. Like a lot of people, they didn’t know the difference between flush-inset and overlay. They had put a deposit down for all of their cabinetry through a national, well-known showroom. This showroom only represented brands that offered overlay door styles of cabinetry. So, of course, they didn’t point this difference out to the client!

It was the clients’ tile installer, who was doing a lot of elaborate work on the house, who then pulled the client aside and said: “hey…you know, for a house like this, you really should have flush-inset cabinetry!” Man, I loved that guy. That tile guy was the catalyst for me getting a rather large “do-over” job.


If you’re not familiar with the difference, study the image above. A flush-inset cabinet will have the doors inset and flush with the surrounding face frame. In comparison, overlay doors will sit proud of and will slightly overlap the surrounding face frame. The former requires a lot more skill and precision to craft and is, therefore, more highly regarded.

In my opinion, if your home is worth over a million dollars, you should be looking at flush-inset cabinetry. It looks bespoke, high-end, and bench-made. Overlay looks utilitarian and whispers of off-the-shelf cabinetry.



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