Planning

Kitchen and bath planning is a crucial factor in the design process. Proper planning involves narrowing down your favorite design ideas, styles, and colors. Ask friends and family what they like or dislike about their kitchens and baths. Select kitchen and bath ideas from every source possible, including Houzz guides, Pintrest, online images, showrooms, books, magazines, and blogs. Kitchen and bath planning is much more than making a beautiful space – it’s also about creating an inviting workplace that celebrates your individual personality and style while maintaining quality and function as the cornerstones of your home.

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Tips – Budgeting Considerations

And now for the question you’ve been waiting for … how much is this project going to cost? To establish a budget, you’ll need to think about your new kitchen and how extensive — and expensive — you want this project to be. Begin by answering a few questions:

  • How long do you plan to stay in this home?
  • Do you want to make structural changes to improve the use of space and traffic flow?
  • Will your new kitchen be the center of family activities?
  • Is there enough storage space?
  • Are there special needs, such as for an elderly person or a person with limited mobility?

Your answers will help you start to develop a working budget. This planning section includes other worksheets to help gather the figures you’ll need to arrive at your total costs.


Remember, new kitchens are never inexpensive but, of all household remodeling projects, they pay the most dividends. It’s estimated that about 81 percent of money spent on kitchen remodeling is recouped in the resale of the home. And with KraftMaid built-to-order cabinetry, you can save money and still get a stunning custom look regardless of your budget.

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Asking The Pros

There’s nothing wrong with going it alone. But, with so many decisions to make, you may want to stick with the fun stuff and leave the hard work to the experts. They can help you watch out for plumbing obstacles, structural considerations and other potential setbacks you may not have noticed. (Kind of like that huge pipe you don’t know about yet that’s right where you want to put a double oven.) This kind of foresight not only affects your design, but can have a great impact on your wallet by helping you avoid expensive problems. Professionals, including your KraftMaid design specialist, can also give you a better sense of costs and help you stay within your budget.

Professionals are likely to have helpful suggestions, since their ideas are born of previous experience whereas your may be rooted more in magazine clippings. A professional can refer you to other specialists such as flooring installers, plumbers, painters, wallpaper hangers, electricians and carpenters. If your project requires structural or mechanical modifications, you may want to contact a professional remodeler or architect.

Whomever and however you choose, be sure to check local building codes and make sure anyone you hire will agree to follow them. To be safe, put all agreements in writing. Specify the brand names, grades of material to be used and the time schedule to be followed.

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Quick Cost-Cutters

Have you considered …

  • Avoiding structural changes?
  • Removing and/or installing cabinetry yourself?
  • Putting some improvements off?
  • Doing your own painting and wallpapering?
  • Using laminate countertops and flooring instead of tile?
  • Reusing existing appliances?

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Wood Characteristics and Finishes

Birch

Natural Birch is a medium density hardwood with a fine moderate grain pattern. The predominant sapwood color is white to creamy yellow, while the heartwood varies in color from medium or dark brown to reddish brown. This range in color makes a distinctive statement in your Birch cabinetry selection.

Cherry

Cherry is an elegant, multi-colored hardwood, which may contain small knots and pin holes. Natural or light stains accent these color variations making a distinctive statement in a full kitchen. Cherry wood will darken or “mellow” with age. This mellowing is a natural occurrence and the benefit of owning a solid Cherry kitchen.

Hickory

Hickory is a strong, open grained wood that is known for its wide variation in color. It is not uncommon to see doors or parts of doors that range in color from light to a deep brown when finished in a light or natural stain. Darker stains will mildly tone these color variations. These characteristics are what make each Hickory kitchen unique and the preference of those that love wood.

Maple

Hard Maple is a strong, closed grain wood that is predominantly off-white in color, although it also contains light hues of yellow-brown and pink. Hard Maple occasionally contains light tan or dark mineral streaks.

Oak

Red Oak is a strong, open grained wood that has a range in color of white, yellow and pink. Red Oak is sometimes streaked with green, yellow and black mineral deposits and may contain some wide grain.

Quartersawn Oak

Red oak is a strong open grained wood that has a range in color of white, yellow and pink. Red Oak is sometimes streaked with green, yellow and black mineral deposits and may contain some wide grain. Quartersawn refers to the method of cutting the Red Oak. Boards are cut through the radius of the rings allowing wavy grain and flaked patterns to show on the face.

Sapwood

The outer zone of wood in a tree, next to the bark. Sapwood is generally lighter than heartwood.

Heartwood

The inner layers of wood in growing trees that have ceased to contain living cells. Heartwood is generally darker than sapwood, but the two are not always differentiated.

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Finish Options

Glaze Finishes

A glaze finish begins with the wood undergoing the standard staining process. The glaze color is applied then hand wiped off. Glaze detailing is hand applied. The glaze remains or “hangs up” in any corner or profile of the door or drawer. Since this is a hand applied process, the detailing may vary from piece to piece.

Distressing

Distressing is a factory-applied technique that gives wood a furniture-aged look. Random wormholes, compression marks and corner over sanding are distressing elements used to convey gently aged fine furniture.

End Grain

End grain surfaces and softer areas of the wood may accept more stain and often appear darker than other surfaces. This is a natural reaction when finishing wood products and potential variances cannot be controlled.

End Grain

End grain surfaces and softer areas of the wood may accept more stain and often appear darker than other surfaces. This is a natural reaction when finishing wood products and potential variances cannot be controlled.

Telegraphing

All wood species show some wood grain. The amount of grain will vary by species and finish. Oak is an open or coarse grain wood. The grain will “telegraph” or visibly show through the stain. Birch and Maple are closed or fine grain woods. Some “telegraphing” will occur, though the effect will be subtle.

Semi-Transparent Color Finishes

KraftMaid’s semi-transparent finishes utilize heavily pigmented stain. They are semi-transparent, which may telegraph some of the natural beauty of the wood. The following may occur with any semi-transparent finish:

Joint Lines

Since wood is in a constant state of expansion and contraction, visible lines are normal at the joints on the cabinet face frames and doors. This does not weaken the finish, or the strength of the joint.

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Remodeling Tips

Before placing an order, make sure that your door style, stain and construction choices have been reviewed with your salesperson.

Before removing your existing kitchen, allow sufficient time for all product delivery; compare delivery receipt to your original order to ensure that you have received all products; and open all cartons and inspect all products, including installation accessories.

Make sure that there is adequate access to areas to be remodeled.

Provide floor and wall move-in path protection.

If storage of new cabinets is required prior to installation, keep them in a controlled environment.

Make provisions for food preparation and cleanup while the kitchen is being remodeled.

Consider the safety of children during the construction period. Never leave them unsupervised while work is underway.

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Care & Cleaning

Wood Cabinet Surfaces

As with all wood products, avoid excessive moisture. KraftMaid cabinetry is designed for use inside the home or other buildings and is not intended for outdoor applications. Once your cabinets have been installed, wipe down all exteriors with a damp cloth to remove dust. Complete a small area at a time and wipe dry. Wood cabinetry finishes may be cleaned and protected by using any commercially available cleaning polish. KraftMaid recommends an emulsion-type cleaner (such as Murphy’s Oil Soap). These are formulated without wax, petroleum solvents or silicones. The extended use of wax polishes can result in a wax film buildup, while the use of silicone polishes can harm the cabinet’s finish.

Cleaning Agents

Avoid spray-type polishes containing petroleum solvents, as they are flammable and toxic if swallowed. KraftMaid brand polish is available from your local KraftMaid dealer. Use a damp cloth when cleaning normal household spills. After wiping thoroughly, dry the surface with a lint-free cotton cloth. For stubborn stains, it may be necessary to use a mild detergent with warm water. Always dry the surface immediately.

Never use abrasive cleaners, scouring pads or powdered cleansers. Do not allow oven cleaner to touch any part of the cabinet.

NOTE: Do not use a dish cloth to wipe your cabinet exterior, since it may contain remnants of grease or detergents.

Everyday Care

It is important to wipe up spills and water marks as they occur. Give special attention to areas around the sink and dishwasher. Avoid draping damp or wet dish towels over the door of the sink base cabinet. Over time, this moisture can cause permanent water damage to the door. A convenient, out-of-the-way sliding towel rack can be purchased from your local KraftMaid dealer.

Care and Cleaning of Hardware

Periodically, use mild soap and warm water to clean door/drawer knobs or pulls. Thoroughly dry all hardware joints and surfaces and the surrounding area with a clean, soft cloth. Buff hardware with a clean, dry cloth. Lubrication of hinges is not necessary; however, hinges can be cleaned or dusted using cotton-tipped swabs.

CAUTION: Many brass and silver polishes contain harsh chemicals that can damage the hardware’s surface. These polishes and cleaners are NOT recommended.

Melamine and Thermofoil Surfaces

KraftMaid’s exterior and interior melamine and thermofoil panels are extremely durable and designed to give you years of beauty and trouble-free service. They can be cleaned with most nonabrasive household cleaners. However, agents containing acetone, acetate or ethyl alcohol should not be used. Harsh solvents and/or abrasives such as turpentine may break down bonds on edge banding and should also be avoided. Ammonia cleaners should be diluted. Certain waxes may lead to discoloration and are not recommended.

If a damp cloth does not sufficiently clean an area, a non-detergent, nonabrasive household cleaner (such as Murphy’s Oil Soap) is recommended. For stubborn stains, use mineral spirits (such as Nature Sol).

IMPORTANT NOTE: Apply solvents to a clean cloth and never directly to the cabinet surface. Never leave a cloth moistened with solvents on a cabinet surface for any length of time.

Avoid Excessive Heat

Self-cleaning appliances generate intense heat during a cleaning cycle. Since the integrity of the appliance seal or gasket may be compromised during installation or with age, KraftMaid recommends the removal of doors and/or drawers from cabinets adjacent to or directly above an appliance during a cleaning cycle. This will help prevent possible damage to the finish or surface of these cabinets. KraftMaid also offers a “heat shield” that may be installed on the side panels of an oven cabinet to help deflect excessive heat from adjacent cabinets. To order this part, see your local authorized KraftMaid dealer.

Care and Cleaning of Glass Door Inserts

If your kitchen contains cabinetry accented with glass doors, a few precautions are necessary. Apply glass cleaner to a towel, not directly to the glass. Avoid cleaner contact with lead, white-, gold- or copper-clad mullions.

Camed glass inserts may be gently buffed with 0000 steel wool, as this will not scratch glass. Avoid steel wool buffing of joints on gold-, copper- or white-clad mullions, as this will remove the coating. A gold touch-up pen is available from your authorized KraftMaid dealer. White mullions can be protected by coating with carnauba wax, available at local hardware or automotive stores.

CAUTION: Cloths used to clean camed glass inserts should be laundered separately. Do not mix with clothing.

Care and Cleaning of Mirrors

Cleaner should always be applied to a cloth, not directly to the mirror, and should not be allowed to run or drip into the base trim. Avoid cleaners that contain sodium hydrochloride, phosphoric acid or sulfur (found in products to prevent mildew and fungus). Hair spray and other hair care products often contain chemicals that are caustic to silver and may cause damage to the mirror back. Do not use abrasives.
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