Have you used Ikea cabinets in your kitchen?
Erin
September 12, 2013 in Design Dilemma
I am smack dab in the middle of a kitchen remodel and truthfully, I should have ordered my cabinets weeks ago but I'm still undecided. If you've used Ikea cabinets, could you give me the pros and cons of them. (Are they good quality? How do they hold up to daily use? Etc.)
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Main Line Kitchen Design
Homeowners on Houzz seem to love IKEA. However many professionals will tell you that the two most important elements in a kitchen are planning and durability. Your kitchen is construction project , appliances, countertop, flooring, backsplash, lighting, fixtures, and so on, are all built around the design of the kitchen and dependent on the durability of the cabinetry. IKEA is bad for both.

Home centers like Lowes and Home depot are better places to design and buy kitchens. Depending on your location you can sometimes find an experienced kitchen designer at a home center somewhere near you. Call first and ask at several if you can. Good designers even at home centers work by appointment so make one with the best you can find, over the phone and in advance.

My comments will upset many people who have invested in IKEA kitchens, but I don't sell or work with any of these companies. So take my comments with that in mind.

Remember that the people who's kitchen is finished first are not the people that started first. The people that finish first, and get the best value for the money they spend are the people who plan the most.

Home owners are often unwilling to make the one investment that gives them the best kitchen. The investment of their own time.
21 Likes   September 12, 2013 at 8:03PM
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espy1
I was on a budget and the cabinets were a good affordable solution. I put the boxes together and then had a professional install. I didn't buy an ikea counter top. Warning: a counter with a overhang had me adjusting every door/drawer. The cabinets are not designed to have that type of counter. Make sure the counter edge doesn't turn down, or you will have to custom drill holes for door and drawer hardware.
2 Likes   September 12, 2013 at 9:35PM
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karenjwilkinson
We installed a vanity from ikea in our bathroom. The finish did not hold up well. I would not invest in cabinets from them again.
11 Likes   September 12, 2013 at 9:39PM
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evamdesign
We went with Home Depot cabinets as ikea didn't offer 30" corner cabinets or was 33". Anyways we are happy with it. I do like how versatile the ikea akurum kitchen accessories are, they do add more functionality to e real world use of kitchens. Else you may need to contact a place like lee valley for additional features to best utilize your space. As we did!

I believe ikea kitchens are a better product than their bathroom line. Some of their bath products are very light duty in feel
2 Likes   September 12, 2013 at 9:48PM
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catieb
Are you doing the installation? Do you have children? How long are you going to live in this house? How custom or detailed are your new design solutions?

Ikea works if you use their entire system (tops, as well as cabinets), don't need to get too custom, aren't using high end appliances. Used to like their lines but the quality seems to have gone down over the past ten or so years and I find the lines to be limited. The cost for the extra labor to install and, reinforcing to use not their granite tops and quality of structure and hardware made me go to big box stores for recent client kitchens.
3 Likes   September 12, 2013 at 10:20PM
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Ironwood Builders
Recently, A contractor friend of mine related that a recent client had elected to go with Ikea cabinets over his custom units because of price. She asked him to put the cabinets together and install them. He did, on a time and material basis. He hustled through the job as he had another to go to and the Ikea decision was late in coming...but the homeowner was very upset....the cost to buy the cabinets, assemble them and install them was more than my friends original bid. The look is great right out of the gate, but the materials are poor quality and they suffer over time. Most contractors I know either refuse to work with the cabinets or build in additional support to make them more sturdy.
13 Likes   September 12, 2013 at 11:31PM
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bungalowlove
I designed a kitchen using Ikea cabinets about 4 years ago. The cabinet rail mounting system is great. The cabinet boxes, if assembled correctly, are very durable. The doors were nice and sturdy and the hinges are Blume. I am in a new home with a kitchen that can't touch the nice smooth operation of the Ikea drawers. The shelves held up to 60 lb of dishes and never sagged. I would design another ikea kitchen in a heart beat.
16 Likes   September 12, 2013 at 11:43PM
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catieb
Erin - that really sums it up - people seem to either love them or hate them.
5 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 4:56AM
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Judy M
Find several local cabinet makers and get estimates. I was surprised at the differences in prices among cabinet makers.

Instead of $3000 for a 60 inch bathroom vanity (from a high end cabinet company) I got a very well made one for $1300.
And two 30 inch wide wall cabinets (full overlay doors maple construction) were less than $300 total.
3 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 5:10AM
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artemis1
This one is always a big debate. You have to compare apples to apples. If you can get quality hand-made cabinets, that's one thing. However, Home depot is not really better than IKEA. Their cabinets are also mid grade and didn't have the features I wanted, such as pull out pantry shelves, at the time. Krafmaid has since added those, as well as the soft close hinges. IKEA had them first. I priced them anyway and they were quite a bit more money. I found that the designer was not much help at all. I actually prefer frame less cabinets. They carry one line, which was way pricier than IKEA, but appeared about the same quality. Of course, you have to assemble them yourself to get any savings. I love my IKEA kitchen. I found this article very helpful, when trying to decide. http://poconomodern.blogspot.com/2012/03/truth-about-ikea-kitchen-cabinets.html
6 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 5:53AM
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artemis1
One more thing...hire an architect or professional kitchen designer. My husband and I are usually do-it-yourselfers, but we hired an architect to help with the design. It was worth every penny! There is a lot you can do to customize an IKEA kitchen.
5 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 6:04AM
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Marilyn Wilkie
We may be the biggest fan of Ikea cabinets on Houzz. We designed and built our entire kitchen in 2010 with Ikea cabinets and appliances. The Ikea portion of our kitchen was under $11,000 - 26 cabinets (27 drawers) and five appliances. That also included 8 feet of oak butcherblock for the island. We did the work ourselves and ended up with a wonderful, sturdy beautiful and practical kitchen. We love the German made Blum soft close cabinet and door hardware and the classic lines of our Adel cabinets.
Ikea has been around since the 50's and their cabinets carry a 25 year warranty. Their appliances have a 5 year warranty and their faucets have a 10 year warranty. There are many styles to choose from..some solid wood and some laminate or foil finish. Assembling the cabinets is not that hard. Easily done by a homeowner. We did not use their countertops but you can get granite from them. We are just finishing up our second Ikea kitchen in another home we bought.
This time we chose a different style and went with all beech butcherblock counters. There are pro's on here that will tell you Ikea is junk but it's easy to ignore them when they are mainly here to sell products of their own. You will hear horror stories about any choice you make. But if you want a nice kitchen at a very reasonable price check out Ikea. They have 20% off of everything Kitchen two times a year also.
After three years our cabinets look and work as new. No problems with the finish, the construction or the hardware. We have loaded our drawers down and they don't even notice it.
24 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 6:17AM
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millerwoodfurniture
Ikea boxes are ok. If they used a thicker back they would be stronger. That said they have been proven durable for many years wether others chose to except it or not. Blum Tandembox that comes with them is far superior to big box store drawers. They might use box joints for some of the lines but are milled and assembled poorly negating the structure of the joint.
There are also several companies devoted to making drawer fronts and doors for Ikea cabinets at a slightly higher cost over Ikea doors. Something to think about if choosing them.
Bottom line Ikea makes a decent cabinet for the price with more options than the box stores but buy the best you can afford!
5 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 7:35AM
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shelleyuk
For what it's worth here in the UK IKEA kitchens have been awarded the best buy award in their category by WHICH the leading UK consumer group. They score incredibly well.

We are about to install an IKEA kitchen having dithered for months over the decision and having considered other ranges and also custom built/semi custom built. We would have gone for custom built but for the cost. Our whole Kitchen is coming in at less than £9k (with new flooring) and the new range cooker alone took up £1650 of that sum.
6 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 7:44AM
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shelleyuk
Also worth keeping in mind that IKEA give a 25 year warranty on their kitchens and they wouldn't do that if they didn't think the products would only last five minutes.
7 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 7:46AM
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Nyk De Mornay
I designed and installed our Ikea kitchen into a very awkward shaped kitchen. The choice of cabinets, fronts and interiors was ideal for what I needed. I did have to cut down a couple of the cabinets to fit around a very awkward shaped chimney breast and alcoves but the simple design of the cabinets made this an easy task.
I have no complaints about the quality or value for money of Ikea kitchens and with such long warranties on all the products I feel that our kitchen will stand the test of time.
(I'm UK based)
4 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 8:05AM
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OnePlan
Hi - I'm happy to design ikea kitchens for people on a freelance basis !!
I've even assembled tall units and drawer bases myself - all satisfactory.
I've been designing kitchens and home interior planning since 1985 !
Happy to quote to design it remotely for you !
Just email me at
one.plan@virgin.net
with the rough room dimensions - and I will email you back an info PDF and a price to design it with you , or for you ! All done via mail ! http://www.houzz.com/pro/oneplan/oneplan
8 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 8:18AM
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JudyG Designs
My daughter, using the IKEA computer planning option at the store, which allowed her to design and install (herself), the most amazing kitchen. She took advantage of the sale and got 20% off everything. Her cabinets are their satin white finish (exact match to Devine’s Icing paint) and chose a quartz countertop and the appliances. She outfitted each drawer and cabinet with all the bells and whistles offered. She did not buy an IKEA sink, nor plumbing fixtures.

Her kitchen could be in a magazine and it cost her under $4,000.00 for everything. The best thing…if one of your doors should get damaged, take it off and buy another one for about $40.00.

Highly recommend.

Take a peek at what you can do…. http://www.houzz.com/photos/kitchen/IKEA-
10 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 8:26AM
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edithsmom
I had IKEA cabinets in a small condo kitchen and installed Silestone counters...we were very pleased with the results and the quality. The Ikea pantry cupboard with pull out drawers was the best I have ever had in any kitchen and a blessing in that small kitchen. The satisfaction with IKEA probably depends on the type of doors selected and whether one has children (we have adults).
4 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 8:35AM
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JudyG Designs
khdebeham…isn’t the pantry amazing? It’s rival is the corner lower cabinet. A perfect design.
3 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 8:40AM
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espy1
Forgot to mention, there is an Ikea Hackers website that has great ideas for customizing cabinets. Many of the solutions show how to add more stabilization if that is a concern. www.ikeahackers.net
6 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 8:57AM
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Circle Goods Reclaimed
The problem with mass produced cabinetry whether it comes from IKEA or Home Depot, Lowes, wherever is the quality of materials. The reason they are so cheap and offer such great deals are the fact that all materials are typically the cheapest of Chinese made sheet goods. The materials they use are barely solid in the core and have a cheap finish that will not last. Another problem with cabinetry from any of them is the lack of flexibility you will not have any special ways into tight spots in a kitchen or corners. Considering that the kitchen is a huge selling point in any house and a true representation of your home, I would spend the money and represent my home as a high quality build. A custom kitchen that is built to the highest of quality will be timeless. I understand people have budgets but if you can stand to wait to do your remodel and put in a kitchen made of quality hardwoods and sheet goods you will notice the difference in a big way! But as someone who has lived a life of being around quality builders and craftsmanship I may be biased:)
9 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 9:00AM
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shelleyuk
Ikea doesn't use the cheapest of the cheap. It does have incredible buying power because of its size.
4 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 9:05AM
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Bay Harbour Homes, LLC
The large retail chains are a great convenience and value for homeowners looking to buy building supplies and things for their home improvement projects, but when you get into products or systems that require complicated design work and multiple parts and pieces you should be more careful. There is a reason these big stores like Ikea, Home Depot, Lowes and Direct Buy sell this stuff so cheaply. Many times the manufacturers represented in these stores are not building the same products to sell there, as they would to sell through their local dealers or distributors. We have seen major plumbing fixture manufacturers replace the traditional bronze internal parts in their valves and faucets with vinyl or plastic in order to be able to sell their products at these lower price points. And of course most people don't know this because it all looks the same from the outside - Not good.

More importantly, be careful of the fine print in your contract with these companies - especially if you buy the product installed. These companies market things like kitchens, as contractors, when in fact they are retail stores and not set up to be contractors. Cabinet designs are very complicated and require multiple steps. Reputable cabinet contractors assume the responsibilities of taking accurate field measurements, evaluating all the possible conflicts that are specific to your home, understand all the parts and pieces that will be required to make it all work given your specific design and manufacturer, and then they warrant or take responsibility for that design. If they make a mistake they are responsible to fix it. Then they handle the scheduling issues, deliveries, and returns, control the quality of the installation, ensure that all the subs and suppliers get paid, and that you have lien waivers and insurance certificates, and handle all matters related to warranties. Yes they are often a little more expensive, but that is because they are assuming all these risks and responsibilities.

We have found, however, that many times the contractual language from these large stores puts a lot of these contractor responsibilities back on the homeowners. We have seen them put homeowners in direct relationships with installers whom they have never met, and leaves them to work with these contractors direct on all matters of quality, scheduling, insurances and warranties. We have also seen them limit their responsibilities to selling you parts and pieces, ultimately making the homeowner responsible for the final designs which they did not prepare. That means that if a part is missing, or gets mis-cut by an installer, the homeowner is responsible for replacing it, or haggle with the installer over whose fault it was. When I read this in one of my customer's contracts I, personally, was shocked that they would put all this on the homeowner, but I understand that they are retail stores and really only look at these transactions as a retail sale - selling you parts and pieces.

The last big issue is one of liability and having that single source of responsibility, so that if you have a problem you can get it resolved quickly. Consider this example - you have a cabinet contractor screwing his boxes to the wall and inadvertantly puts a screw into a plumbing pipe he didn't know was there. That screw seals itself until the tip rusts out 6 months later and you come home to find your home flooded. You would be very happy to know that you had hired a reputable company, who is still around to fix it and who was properly insured at the time to be able to get your house repaired. While the big companies can sell things very inexpensively by using their large purchasing power, you can see that they might not always be the best value. Buyer beware.
7 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 9:14AM
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Circle Goods Reclaimed
But there is a huge difference in an American made sheet of melamine that you would find at your local cabinet shop vs an import you would see in an IKEA kitchen. And if you have the ability why not support your local market?
7 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 9:15AM
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maxdc
We did an Ikea kitchen (Adel) in 2006 and it is still going strong, 2 kids, heavy use. We used Ikea counters (laminate) on the perimeter and did a granite island top.

What made this the right choice for us is that my dad is very handy and he and my husband were able to build the island base themselves, assemble and install all of the cabinets and invent nifty hacks like cutting down various side panels to create filler strips and so forth to make it look very custom.

I found the planning software very easy to use.

Our kitchen was a straight run on one side and then the island on the other, so we didn't have to use corner units or anything fancy.

I am in a different house now and would like to use Ikea again but the configuration of the kitchen will require at least 3 corner units and try as I might with the Ikea pieces the sizes are just not going to work in this new space.

I think the best advice is to buy ONLY the Ikea cabinet fronts that are WOOD or at least mostly wood. I would not use Ikea foil finish doors as I doubt they will hold up very well.

My neighbor has a 10 year old Ikea kitchen with the foil finish doors and the doors in her sink unit have swollen. Good news is that it is easy to fix (go buy 2 new doors).

If you can really DIY, Ikea will save you alot of money. If you have to pay to install, maybe not.
6 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 9:16AM
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Marilyn Wilkie
@CircleGoods Reclaimed, your comments indicate to me that you really don't know much about Ikea cabinets. Especially this comment:

"The reason they are so cheap and offer such great deals are the fact that all materials are typically the cheapest of Chinese made sheet goods. The materials they use are barely solid in the core and have a cheap finish that will not last."

Ikea sources their materials from all over the world. Much of our kitchen was stamped Canada. Much of the lumber in America comes from Canada or other countries. We are no longer the big supplier. In the global market we live in you will find the finest companies often use Chinese supplies, just like the American made automobiles. The name of the game is money and if someone can make a buck by doing something offshore, they will. With today's mobile society it does not always make sense to pay the high dollar for perseived "quality". Many cabinet suppliers hate Ikea for what they have been able to do - bring quality kitchens to the masses.
Here is an article on Ikea's Green initiatives. That matters to me. How many other companies can do this, or would? http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/ikeas-green-initiatives-changi-157015
6 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 10:12AM
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Marilyn Wilkie
Here is someone else's analysis of Ikea cabinets. It might interest you.
http://poconomodern.blogspot.com/2012/03/truth-about-ikea-kitchen-cabinets.html
0 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 10:17AM
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mmilos
To me, all the toe kicks on IKEA cabinets look too high and out of proportion.
0 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 10:34AM
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MS Colours Inc
Contact a local cabinet maker and have him build you a quality custom cabinet. The construction and finish of prefinished cabinets will not be as good as artisan built and finished cabinets.
5 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 10:42AM
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shelleyuk
The other issue is that fashions change (otherwise there would be no need for Houzz since once we'd all fitted out our homes we'd be finished for ever). Cabinets that last a lifetime are not necessarily going to be wanted for a lifetime. Cheaper kitchens give more opportunity to change things as tastes change.
8 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 11:10AM
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Circle Goods Reclaimed
So the debate seems to be focused on if you should have a cheap easily thrown away cabinet or a quality built one that will last you a long time. If you get the high quality cabinet and get a layout you really enjoy then you can always reface the cabinets years down the road. And that reface would be so much less work and cost than an entirely new set of cabinets even if they are cheap. At the end of the day it comes down to what you are comfortable with. And what you value your kitchen at there are some good points on either side here. I hope everyones insight was useful to you.
6 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 11:26AM
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MS Colours Inc
Most fine cabinets can refinished and updated to a different look. The outside of the cabinet is not the total construction is to be considered. Hinges and drawer hardware work smoother and have a longer life span. Try to find a matching door or hardware to any of these prefinished cabinets after they have been installed after 6 months.
2 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 11:46AM
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shelleyuk
No I don't think that is the issue Circle goods. I think the issue is that for the vast majority of people custom built kitchens are not affordable. Both my husband and I are high earners but we can't afford one at the moment since we have other things we need to use our disposable income on. It would be lovely if we could all afford custom built kitchens but we can't so options like ikea are good options. They are decent quality, they use top spec hardware and they have a long guarantee which is reassuring for those who buy. They are certainly not throw away, our new kitchen has a 25 year guarantee and has solid wooden doors. But it is also affordable.
11 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 1:45PM
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shelleyuk
Plus, with all the input I have had from fellow Houzzers it is possible to avoid that off the shelf look.
2 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 1:46PM
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Main Line Kitchen Design
The guarantee is a gimmick. It's simply an actuarial gamble, and a marketing ploy. Even if you were given new boxes for your cabinets in 15 years it would cost the price of a kitchen to switch them out. If you like frameless cabinetry then the difference between IKEA and other frameless lines is not that significant. Well made framed cabinetry with plywood sides can be almost the same price as IKEA and when the drawers and hinges are attached to solid hardwood and not plywood or particleboard like IKEA cabinets, then the cabinets can last for MORE than a lifetime.

This argument always goes on forever, but, if the cabinetry is a modern style they will look out of date anyway in 15 years. And most people that buy IKEA will move before they ever have durability issues and so the warrantee won't even be able to be enforced, since it is not transferable.
6 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 2:11PM
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MS Colours Inc
Seem like a discussion that never ends. You get what you pay for in all businesses.
4 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 2:25PM
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monaparoussis
My daughter used Ikea white kitchen cabinets, and uppers. She also had an island built in the middle of the floor, using Ikea cabinets. The counter top was black, leather look, (cleaned up nicely) and the sink was an Ikea sink. It looked like a farmhouse sink. She used subway tiles for a backsplash, with lime green glass strips to add color to the break the monotony. The floor was Torley's lamanate in black and charcoal with a slate look. She enjoyed her wonderful looking and functional kitchen for a year, until they needed a larger home with 2 babies. This kitchen sold that old house! It looked amaizing!
3 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 2:28PM
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hazeldazel
Circle Goods: I have *maybe* $10,000 to spend on completely gutting my kitchen and redoing it. So that's doable with high-quality custom cabinetry? I don't think so. If I go to IKEA, I can get good quality for not a lot of money, I may not have a ton of choices but at least I'll have something decent. Nobody is saying that handmade cabinets with solid wood aren't better - just completely out of reach for a large segment of the population.
19 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 2:34PM
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ReSquare Architecture + Construction
Ikea assembly just kills the material cost savings with labor costs unless you assemble them all yourself prior to a contractor's installation.
2 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 3:27PM
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OnePlan
... which is what those who don't want to DIY totally, can do to keep costs down ! Excellent advice ReSquare !!
... and for those who said it's complicated - well it's not - I have assembled drawers and tall kitchen units and it's not difficult to pick up - I actually have ikea tall cabinets, with full length doors, in a bedroom as wardrobes - due to low (6'6") ceilings and I haven't had a problem with them at all !
yes, in a perfect world, bespoke would have been nice, but like Shelley, I too, have other uses for my expendable income ! Most people do !
3 Likes   September 13, 2013 at 10:48PM
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bubblyjock
Schuler Cabinets from Lowe's are good quality, but are they worth 4-5x Ikea cabinets? IMO, not.

Re-Square is right, though - make sure you don't get dinged on assembly charges. There are plenty of excellent amateur home-Youtube instructions out there, so unless you're a total klutz, probably no need to get a pro installer.
0 Likes   September 14, 2013 at 7:19AM
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Select Hardwood Floor Co.
MS Colours Inc...

2 quotes come to mind...

One seen on a gazillion restaurant menus:
"Cheap food is not good; Good food is not cheap".

And another I "borrow" frequently from some old guy:
“The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten” – Benjamin Franklin
10 Likes   September 14, 2013 at 8:36AM
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Main Line Kitchen Design
"We have met the enemy and they are us"
Pogo
8 Likes   September 14, 2013 at 9:23AM
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longgreenhouse
We replaced our 1950s built-in-place-by-a-farmer kitchen with an Ikea kitchen. We paid a college student to help us build and hoist the boxes, and even with new appliances we came in under $5000. We have a classic look at a relatively low price, and it functions well. The glass-fronted upper cabinets are beautiful. My farmhouse-style sink looks exactly the way I dreamed it would. The pantry cabinets with pull-outs and soft-close doors are fantastic and I haven't come close to putting too much on a shelf, even with tons of canned goods and jars. My corner cabinets have wonderful turntables. The bottom drawers hold everything and make the most of a small space. We compared several other options, and I am totally satisfied with my Ikea kitchen. I think the people who say Ikea kitchens are crap don't know what they're talking about.
12 Likes   October 22, 2013 at 2:37PM
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patch22
Having just lived in a house for 1 1/2 years that has an Ikea kitchen put in by the previous owner, I can say I was extremely pleasantly surprised by the quality feel and function of the cabinets and hardware. No issues with any of the soft close drawers, couldn't overload the pot drawers if I tried, and the finish held up well to a ton of cooking hours and a 2 year old. I even removed vinyl tile backsplash glue from the sides of the tall pantry with a metal putty knife, green scour pads, and a bunch of magic erasers without leaving a scratch!

I have just moved into another house with a sadly outdated kitchen, and I fully plan to use Ikea cabinets again, although I may go with semihandmade for the doors as I am not a huge fan of the Ikea door styles.

I also find it interesting, and a bit self serving, that the only comments deriding Ikea kitchens are coming from company usernames, while every homeowner that has commented absolutely loves them.
10 Likes   December 15, 2013 at 6:30PM
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mickisue
I find it interesting that the only people who are complaining about the quality of IKEA cabinets are those whose income is threatened by them; the people who actually live with them are full of praise for them.

I have custom cabinets in my kitchen that were installed when we built our house in 1999. And I can show you numerous examples of where the custom cabinetry maker used flawed wood, took doors that had holes drilled in them for some other project and installed them in my kitchen, and finished edges sloppily. And I has the blood and slivers to prove it.

Custom does not guarantee quality, anymore than mass produced guarantees shoddiness. It's up to the consumer to make an informed decision on what he or she spends, and on what.

Over the past summer, I refinished every one of those cabinets in my kitchen. That's why I know every flaw. If I had it all to do over again, I might have gone with the IKEA!
10 Likes   December 15, 2013 at 7:17PM
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mfwolfe
I am not a company nor do I even have friends, relatives or coworkers who know anyone who works for a cabinet company. When we began planning to build a house the architect told me to use ikea cabinets to save money so I could afford acres of concret. FYI....architects love concrete. I didn't want acres of concrete but I am always interested in saving money so I went to ikea and looked. My plan for a kitchen was pretty large and I couldn't even begin to get a grip on how many cabinets I would need, much less how I would transport them 300 miles from the ikea store. Plus I didn't like the look of them...way too spare and gaunt for me. Looked at some other cabinets that were do it yourself and they were really nice, but when I watched them being put together I knew my husband and I weren't up to that! Talked to the builder and he said exactly what has been said here already...by the time he put these cabinets together I would spend as much as if I went to an interior design firm....not even a big box store. So I did. The builder sent over the plans and I spent about 12 to 15 hours at that shop choosing everything for my kitchen. The cabinet makers who are speaking here are being truthful. Going to ikea will save you money on the cabinets themselves, but you will being doing one hundred per cent of the planning, putting together and installing. Figure out how much that is worth to you.
4 Likes   December 15, 2013 at 7:44PM
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John James O'Brien - Design for Inspired Living
Boxes are boxes are boxes ... I have designed and installed kitchens in the 10,000 CAD to 150,000 Euros and while the hardware and quality of finish does differ, essentially you are still dealing with questions of design and boxes. Alternatively, it's a matter of a fully customized kitchen and this may STILL mean boxes built to specs, and only rarely custom crafted cabinetry.

I'm with Main Line Kitchens--the most important aspect is planning. Give a LOT of thought to how you live, how you will use the kitchen, how you cook and entertain, what bugs you (yes, SOMETHING bugs you a LOT about kitchens you have lived with ;-)

Tips fora more economical use of boxes: remember that the cheapest kitchen can look better than expected with good use of planning and extra panels & trim used to make a custom look paired with higher end pulls and well planned lighting. Worry less about trends (which trend OUT as much as in) and more about function and, if you are bold, something that is unique today and will be tomorrow (bearing in mind any concerns about re-sale). My two cents ;-)
6 Likes   December 15, 2013 at 8:17PM
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shelleyuk
mfwolfe that isn't correct, ikea will plan out your kitchen with you and also install for you if you want them to.
5 Likes   December 16, 2013 at 5:34AM
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yoboseiyo
if you're going to install the ikea stuff yourself, here's a set of videos that a custom cabinetry maker made. he built and installed an ikea kitchen in a house he flipped, and made these videos because of his experience.





i thought they were very informative.
5 Likes   December 16, 2013 at 6:39AM
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Nancy Travisinteriors
Shelley is right Ikea has started to space plan and install. It's a great deal.
1 Like   December 16, 2013 at 10:31AM
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Marilyn Wilkie
For our latest kitchen in our future retirement home I assembled every one of the cabinets myself, only asking for my husband's help in lifting them off the assembly table. The boxes are sturdy, the hardware is excellent and the finish is good. There are many door and drawer fronts to choose from and they can be switched out with after market ones or another style in the future. They do carry a 25 year warranty which is not a sham. If you don't have an Ikea kitchen or have not installed one why do you think you can accurately criticize them? It's ridiculous.
@Mfwolfe...you said "Going to ikea will save you money on the cabinets themselves, but you will being doing one hundred per cent of the planning, putting together and installing. Figure out how much that is worth to you."
We've done two entire kitchens now ourselves and enjoyed every minute of it. ...I got exactly the kitchens I wanted because I personally designed them with their great kitchen planning software and added every feature I needed or wanted. THAT was worth a lot to me...plus not writing a check to someone to do what we could do ourselves.
4 Likes   December 16, 2013 at 10:50AM
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anitanazar
I love IKEA kitchens! They are affordable, easy to install (hubby did it), and look great. In my old home we gutted our 1960's kitchen and replaced with Adel doors medium brown, with stainless steel appliances, it looked great. We sold that house a couple of years ago, and when we bought our new house, we put a kitchen in our lower level space we went with the same Adel doors but in off-white. Here are the pics of our Ikea kitchen in our new home...
5 Likes   December 16, 2013 at 11:03AM
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anitanazar
Here are the pics of the Adel medium brown used in our old home...
5 Likes   December 16, 2013 at 11:05AM
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allofitsjunk
Prior owners of my house installed Ikea cabinets in the kitchen and bathrooms. While they look ok from a distance, they are actually pretty flimsy and the finish is thin and gone in several areas. I am a homeowner, not a company, and I would not use Ikea cabinets. In fact, I have a savings account for the sole purpose of ripping every Ikea cabinet out of my house and replacing them.
6 Likes   December 16, 2013 at 11:11AM
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mickisue
Any item is only as good as the person who puts it together. You can take a piece of cloth that cost $5 a yard and make a beautiful dress; you can take one that cost $100 a yard and make a sloppy disaster.

I am very much a do it yourself-er. I have installed plumbing, stained cabinets, built a hardwood desk from a box of parts, and assembled various and sundry cabinets and shelving. In fact, in my office where I'm currently sitting, the only furniture that I didn't have a hand in putting together is my chair. Even the file cabinet was pulled apart so I could spray paint it before it came into the office.

Some people do things themselves because that's all they can afford, and they do it as quickly and easily as they can get away with. I would venture to say that the previous owners of your home fit that category. Others, like me, and many other people who frequent this forum, do things themselves because, yes, they would rather spend the money on something else, but, more importantly, they enjoy the wonderful feeling of looking at something beautiful in their home, and knowing that they did it themselves!
7 Likes   December 16, 2013 at 12:21PM
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allofitsjunk
Yes, the previous owners definitely fit the category of the quick and easy - they needed to sell their house and they needed to sell it fast. So we are now the proud owners of a DIY nightmare. But that's ok because we knew going into the purchase that, as non-DIYer's, we would need to hire professionals to correct the shoddy workmanship. How I envy DIYer's that can do it right!
0 Likes   December 16, 2013 at 12:51PM
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PRO
Main Line Kitchen Design
Part of the problem as I mentioned is that kitchen design is more complicated than people realize. Independent of the quality of IKEA cabinets homeowners should get qualified design help. The above kitchens break some of the most fundamental kitchen design rules.

Never have a range under a window, and never have a range at the end of a cabinet run next to a doorway (this breaks building code in the US on two counts). Try to have an exhaust fan in your kitchen when possible. And the NKBA's first rule concerning function in a kitchen is have at least 18" and 24" of countertop on each side of a primary sink. The above kitchens fail on those major and other less important design rules.
7 Likes   December 16, 2013 at 2:25PM
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Main Line Kitchen Design
Here's an article on dangerous kitchen designs some people might find interesting:

http://www.daily5remodel.com/index.php?action=article&rowid=1984
3 Likes   December 16, 2013 at 2:28PM
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longgreenhouse
Oh, well, I will definitely hire Main Line Kitchens when my brand new, seemingly wonderful Ikea kitchen poops out, as you predict it will. Catastrophic failure, I'm sure. You're not at all condescending, and I'm sure it will be a joy to work with you.
10 Likes   December 16, 2013 at 3:37PM
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Comwest Construction
Ikea cabinets are probably the worst and cheapest cabinets that you can buy. I suggest you talk to a few designers and get a good idea of what you want to do. Then have a professional that has been doing this for sometime design your kitchen. Most clients don't understand that design is the most important part of remodeling your kitchen. These days anybody with a computer call themselves designer including Home depot and low's which most of them has no clue how to design. Spending the time and money upfront can save you lots of money and headaches during your remodel.
11 Likes   December 16, 2013 at 4:01PM
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allofitsjunk
longgreenhouse - what's with the snarky comment?
1 Like   December 16, 2013 at 5:40PM
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Main Line Kitchen Design
@Longgreenhouse I only advised that there were equally priced better alternatives then IKEA and that getting a good design was the most important part of the process. If you chose to ignore the advice that's OK. I just hope that you don't have any of the dangerous design flaws mentioned in the article, that's the only thing that's really matters.
4 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 8:00AM
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longgreenhouse
No, you also commented that the quality of the cabinets is low, and the guarantee is essentially fake, and that "we have met the enemy..." However, as I said, I'd definitely choose you to do my kitchen (when my wonderful Ikea one gives out).
3 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 8:06AM
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maximista
I love Ikea - I have installed 2 different Ikea kitchens in 2 different houses - nothing ever broke and it looks awesome. I love the cabinet options, the soft closing, and all possible organizers that are available. Plus you can easily have a new kitchen every 10 years given Ikea prices (or change cabinet fronts as often as you want) instead of being stuck with an outdated horrendous old kitchen because you spent too much money on it.
7 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 8:15AM
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Main Line Kitchen Design
Yes I believe there are better made alternatives for the same price, and yes the warrantee isn't going to help anyone if the cabinets fail. And of course you won't call us you didn't like our free advice the first time around. But that's OK we look for customers that will value our advice. That's why we don't tell people what they'd like to hear but what we have learned from long study and experience. Anything short of that does them a disservice.
8 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 8:46AM
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kaak
one bonus of an Ikea kitchen is that you can always do upgrades if you get tired of the look. I bought a house this year with a new all-Ikea kitchen (except appliances - they were jenn-aire) and I like the fact that when I get tired of the look I can replace doors with new styles and have a whole new look.
Our kitchen is not as large as I am used to, so to better use the space I added drawers inside all of my cabinets and they give access to the back of the cabinets, effectively doubling my space. Ikea insert drawers are really good quality and can handle lots of weight without budging. I have had pro-installed drawers in higher grade kitchens that constantly went off their rails and broke. The Ikea metal drawers are infinitely stronger. The only problem comes when you are spacing the exterior doors so that they leave room to open the drawers on the inside yet still cover the entire opening. It can be tricky.
2 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 9:02AM
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maximista
The only thing you need to do is to browse through these pictures http://www.houzz.com/photos/kitchen/IKEA- and then think about how little these people paid for their kitchens. Case closed.
5 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 9:06AM
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Marilyn Wilkie
Comwest Construction and Mainline, your real problem with Ikea kitchens and people doing things for themselves is that you can't make any money off of them. She asked for opinions from people who HAVE Ikea cabinets, so your comments are really not what she asked for. Sell your expensive expertise to someone who wants to feel like they were paying for quality.
7 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 9:14AM
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longgreenhouse
I spent 22 years pondering the remodel of our kitchen. I moved templates around on graph paper and used my husband's AutoCAD software, and when we were finally able to pull the trigger on the remodel I found Ikea's software to have some glitches but generally work well. I spoke with the planners in the kitchen department at least three times, and they were very helpful in helping me make the most of my space, which has three doorways, a pass-through window, and a window to the outside. We had NO problems installing the kitchen, and it functions a thousand times better than what it replaced, and it was absolutely the least expensive option for a quality kitchen. People who walk in can't believe it's Ikea and was flat-packed.
6 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 9:20AM
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Fred S
There is no building code in the U.S. that prohibits a range from being at the end of the cabinets or under a window. It is left up to the listing and labeling of the specific stove.There are ranges that have a zero clearance to side walls specifications. The only ranges I have seen that mention anything about a window are the very high powered gas stoves, and even they only say that there should be no openings behind the stove. They make glass cook tops and glass cookwear. Glass is even used for backsplashes behind stoves. It is very fireproof and easy to clean. http://publicecodes.cyberregs.com/icod/irc/2012/icod_irc_2012_19_sec001.htm
7 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 9:30AM
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PRO
Aggie dba Aggie Designs
IKEA Kitchens have gotten so much better in the last 3-4 years. They used to have a god awful 5/8" white melamine box as the only option, with a small selection of sizes and door styles. Now they have 3/4" Boxes. Back in the day you could barely fit American Appliances with them, now they have sizes that work with 36", 48" wide Fridges, 30" Ovens, etc. Their door style and hardware selection has grown, and so has the Counter top Selection (they have 3 different "butcher block" counters as opposed to the old Skinny Beech one), and they have different Laminate Counters as well as sinks and faucets. I always liked their Islands and the New Stainless Shelving Collection with the Versatile Hanging System is out of the Hettich Catalogue for half the price.

The overall pricing has gone up, too, though but it is well worth it. IKEA offers a subcontractor Installation Service as well. Their Designers are not the same guys who designed the displays in the showroom. I can still get that business because the $12 an hour designer will not have my skills. But you can't beat them for the budget kitchen. IKEA is not for the custom high end market, where most of the pros work to make a living, we (pros) are not competing for that market (low end diy), at least I am not trying to (although I do design IKEA Kitchens on occasion, but it's not my focus). I do what I need to do to get by.
8 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 9:41AM
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mefor
Hate to join because of all the angst this causes people, but since I have an Ikea kitchen that functions beautifully and was inexpensive and most people think looks good, I thought I'd answer. I commented on another ikea kitchen about 5 months ago and some great guy tried to beat me over the head, but since I haven't seen him around I guess I'm relatively safe.
I put an ikea kitchen into my beach house mainly because I didn't want to spend a lot for a holiday house and the renovations were expensive enough. I was thrilled that the kitchen came out even better than I had imagined. The hardware is great, the finish is holding up very well, the storage solutions and planning tools were great. I'm really happy with it and the price was wonderful. Dealing with ikea was also wonderful. There is a reason they're so popular, some great designs and enough practice to get it right with the minimum of fuss. You don't win design awards and have so many loyal customers if your product is lacking.
22 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 9:44AM
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mefor
I designed my own kitchen, btw.
11 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 9:45AM
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Aggie dba Aggie Designs
Here I am (foreground) on my hands and knees assisting our installer putting together an IKEA kitchen as captured by our best ever client who was feeding us pizza and beer...
6 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 10:17AM
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Modaainc.com
Can't believe this discussion is still alive from September. Makes total sense because Ikea cabinets are always up for a debatable discussion. I agree Catie, it all depends on purpose and living conditions. If you have kids and pets, then maybe Ikea cabinets aren't the way to go as far as durability, however if you're just a household of say two adults with light cooking then Ikea might be a wonderful solution. It is very affordable and as a builder I'd prefer it over Chinese made cabinets from a third party source just for the sake of product warranty or Ikea brand promise.
2 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 10:26AM
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Creative Design Group LLC
I've had clients that used Ikea for kitchen remodels and were very happy with the cabinetry and the price!
3 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 10:29AM
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mefor
Hey comwest, what a swell guy, charm oozing, must get a lot of jobs with that. Merry Christmas!!!!!!!! :)
4 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 10:54AM
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Lizabeth
Yes I used Ikea, did my own design, built the boxes and saved a ton of money. They held up wonderfully for 8 years I was in that house even with two children and a dog!!! The product is for a certain DIY who has limited funds and the ability to do their own install.
6 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 11:20AM
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mickisue
LOL, mforr, I have been thinking about Mr. Comwest all morning, as I painted my kitchen walls. When a person represents himself as a pro, there are certain expectations. One is that he use his native language correctly. Mr CC: fail. Another is that he treat his potential customers with respect. Mr CC: fail.

When one debates on an internet forum, one may believe that only the person who was originally addressed is being affected by the comments made. That belief is also a fail. Everyone who reads the comment, today, tomorrow, in five years, will know that Mr. Comwest Construction is rude and insulting, while displaying woeful ignorance on the topic.

Question for him, and the other pros here who claim to have in-depth knowledge of IKEA cabinetry: please elaborate. Have you, for example, done a side by side study of the quality of construction of IKEA cabinets with those sold at other big box stores, your own suppliers and or online sellers of cabinetry? If so, please list the criteria that you used to determine that IKEA is "the lowest grade." Several of you have stated that the 25 year warranty offered by IKEA is useless. What experience of yours, or your clients, has led you to make that statement?

The people in this thread who have used IKEA cabinetry have, with the exception of one who bought a home whose previous owners didn't take care when installing them, stated appreciation for their cabinets. That is commentary from personal experience. One would hope that a professional would require of him or herself that experience and disinterested data gathering would inform opinions offered.
12 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 11:20AM
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mefor
Don't waste your energy, mickisue, and don't give him any clues as to what his charm will really do for him. If he doesn't realize that there's a huge audience looking at what he types here, you needn't tell him. Better for all who might have considered him as a contractor to see his true colors shine through. Remember how I just said that there was a great guy who tried to beat me over the head? Well, you've just met him and I see he's just as clever as before. I hope that lots of prospective clients will look for you on houzz, Shawn Shad of Comwest Construction, they'll get an eyeful :)
7 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 11:37AM
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mickisue
Well played!
1 Like   December 17, 2013 at 12:30PM
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PRO
Design Details
I've heard most of these arguments before and it's like hearing a cat arguing with a giraffe. It's about what one group values over the other.
I'm a pro on Houzz because I want to let people get a chance to see some of the well built and well thought out kitchens I've designed over the years. None of them have used IKEA cabinets because designing with limited cabinet lines is a chore that forces compromise and reduces kitchen design to puzzle solving. I've found a few cabinet lines from quality oriented smaller manufacturers that don't charge extra for a few modifications, and I'll stick with them.
Many people enjoy the process of putting together a puzzle and doing the work themselves but, with due respect, I think the help of an experienced designer and a good semi-custom cabinet line will usually get you a better kitchen.
A DIY kitchen will cost less, but I prefer the satisfaction of a well detailed and constructed personalized space. It's what my customers want and it's what I do.
5 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 12:42PM
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mefor
Design Details, I think a beautifully designed kitchen is wonderful, whether done by a professional or a homeowner with knowledge. The kitchen in my year round house is custom built, custom painted, inset cabinetry and professionally installed. I love it, and I paid dearly for it. My problem is not with someone liking a custom kitchen, but with the fact that the poster was asking about someone's experiences with Ikea kitchens and someone else coming on with complete arrogance towards me. This is the other kitchen, during construction. I love it too. :)
10 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 12:52PM
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PirateFoxy
If the cabinet boxes and drawers and doors are all custom sized, how do you handle providing the same flexibility in organization of the interior that you get from some of the available interior options from lines like Ikea? Does custom cabinetry now include a skilled welder in case you need wire shelving customized or a hidden corner unit designed?

I mean, one of the things that attracts me to a line of cabinets is how flexible it is from an organization perspective - how much I need to store and what I need to store is likely to change over the length of time I'm in the house, so I don't want all of my kitchen cabinets to be designed to only properly handle exactly what I have at the time of building the kitchen.
6 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 1:00PM
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Design Details
That's the point PirateFoxy. Wire shelving and a lot of other components come in standard sizes, but what you do with a cabinet interior is another thing. You can combine components in a single cabinet or size multiple cabinets so you can interchange components. For instance, you can have a corner base lazy susan with unequal sized doors so that there is room for a place to stack cutting boards on one side. You can also have a base cabinet that will hold a variety of pullouts that can be added or removed as you like, or a cabinet that opens both from the front and the side. I always consider how to make organization more flexible rather than sticking with what's in the catalog. Custom design just expands your choices.
3 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 2:54PM
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Lizabeth
The poster did not ask the advantages of custom design, working with a small cabinetmaker. The poster asked a very specific question of people who had used IKEA kitchen cabinets. The arrogant condescension from some professionals will ultimately hurt their business.
7 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 4:07PM
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chookchook2
Erin, have you finished your kitchen in time for Christmas? Can you post some pics? Doesn't matter if tidy or not. Or let us know what you did in the end.
1 Like   December 17, 2013 at 4:57PM
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chookchook2
Design Details I was very interested in your cat/giraffe observation. My daughter took a package to school today as present for her teacher. Wrapped up , it looks like a shotgun. In actual fact it is a giraffe, handmade in Bali. She chose it herself, but I stopped her from naming it so he can name it himself. My hubby thought it could be a Wendle. Wendle did suit it. It would look nice in a kitchen, Designpolice, I'm being relevant.
1 Like   December 17, 2013 at 5:08PM
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m3459
Two comments:

I will put a woman with 20-40 years' of daily experience in a kitchen up against a highly experienced kitchen designer in "planning" any day, any time.

And secondly, what would a cat have to say to a giraffe in the first place?
9 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 5:30PM
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chookchook2
How's the weather up there?
4 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 5:36PM
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chookchook2
I'm knitting a long scarf for you but the ball of wool ends up all over the floor.
3 Likes   December 17, 2013 at 5:38PM
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PRO
Main Line Kitchen Design
I'll take a cat or a giraffe of either sex if they have a few years design experience over any amateur kitchen designer. If the animals can cook all the better.

I prefer an accountant doing my taxes, and a mechanic working on my car. I don't choose to get help from someone who likes to count or drives a lot. I'll take an educated professional please. And I'll weigh their advice and probably take it, because I'm smart enough to know what I don't know.

I also stop and ask questions if I ever get lost traveling and I appreciate the help. Some people will drive for hours wasting gas, their time, and risking accidents by refusing to stop and get the assistance they need. Their travels are more costly and less efficient but they can be proud they made them without assistance.
1 Like   December 17, 2013 at 8:34PM
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longgreenhouse
Who's snarky now, Paul?
1 Like   December 18, 2013 at 10:56AM
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Lizabeth
Perhaps I was overly influenced by Robert Persig's Classic book Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance but it did affect my life. When I built my first home, framing with a hammer I passed my first inspection with zero corrections and the inspector complimented me on my choice of framers thinking I had subbed it out.
Here is a summary of that book which in essence is a mindful patient person will always do quality work even if not professional

.Much of the book focuses on a rather surprising topic: quality. We think of quality as a measure of a product or a person, and we feel the right to make judgments about it because it is clear when something is of quality or is not. The narrator recounts taking his motorcycle to a workshop and reluctantly handing it over to a crew of young men playing loud music. Instead of fixing the machine, they butcher it, and he learns a lesson: it is the attitude towards a technological problem, not simply rational knowledge of how a thing works, that makes all the difference. Merely going by the manual is a clumsy, low-quality approach. Thereafter, he did the work himself

Quality cannot be defined in a rational way, it can only noticed when it happens. Yet quality is everything: the difference between someone who cares, and one who does not; between a machine that can enrich your life, and one that explodes into a heap of useless mental. Yet instruction manuals, the narrator observes, totally leave out of the picture the person who is putting something together. If you are angry or unmotivated, you will not succeed in tuning the machine or finding the problem, but if you patiently put your mind into the place of the original designer, you come to see that a machine is really just the physical expression of a set of ideas. Paradoxically, it is only when you go beyond the classical idea that we can separate our mind from the world, that 'objects' begin to come alive. Quality is appreciated not as a thing, but as the force that drives the universe. The narrator notes, "Obviously some things are better than others.but what's the 'betterness'?" His epiphany comes in reading the ancient Tao Te Ching, when he realizes that what we call Quality, or 'betterness', is the same as the Eastern concept of 'Tao', the universal power or essence which can never be identified as such, but whose presence or absence makes something good.
6 Likes   December 18, 2013 at 11:04AM
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shelleyuk
Erm....... I was about to say exactly the same thing.
5 Likes   December 18, 2013 at 11:31AM
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allofitsjunk
mickisue - regarding your comment "with the exception of one who bought a home whose previous owners didn't take care when installing them"...I just want to clarify that while yes, the installation was sloppy, the cabinets themselves are very flimsy and the finish is wearing away, and I don't believe these issues have anything to do with installation. I think it was mentioned somewhere above that there are varying qualities of Ikea cabinets and I have a feeling that the prior owners bought the cheapest ones they could get. But the chintziness of the cabinets currently installed in my home has biased me against Ikea cabinets and I would not recommend them.
2 Likes   December 18, 2013 at 1:19PM
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mickisue
Thanks for the clarification. But it seems a bit unfair to me. Every company, whether IKEA or Bigshot Custom Builders, sells varying grades of product. Just as we got the builder grade (although customized to our home) cabinets when we built, others got higher grade woods and nicer fixtures and sinks, etc when they built.
1 Like   December 18, 2013 at 2:50PM
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allofitsjunk
If I read a book that I don't like - I don't buy another of the author's books. If I go to a restaurant and don't care for the food - I don't go back to the restaurant. If I buy a pair of shoes that don't last long - I won't buy that brand again. And I wouldn't recommend the author, restaurant or shoe brand to others. So I don't think it's unfair to base my opinion of Ikea cabinetry on my experience with Ikea cabinetry.
1 Like   December 18, 2013 at 4:12PM
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Marilyn Wilkie
@thedoublevs, what exactly happened to your cabinets? What were the specific problems? Do the drawers and doors operate well? If not, have you adjusted them by adjusting the Blum hardware? Do you have small children? Did you have a flood? What is the style and name of your cabinets? When were they put in? Please be specific. Thanks.
0 Likes   December 24, 2013 at 8:59AM
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m3459
Main Line, so the issue seems to be one of self-sufficiency.

And Lizabeth, great synopsis of quality. It summarizes my problem with most professionals these days: no pride of craft while having a great love of money.
2 Likes   December 24, 2013 at 10:17AM
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Marilyn Wilkie
So, Main Line, how do you like your Ikea kitchen? That was the original question, wasn't it?
0 Likes   December 24, 2013 at 10:21AM
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mickisue
doublevs, I understand what you are saying, but perhaps you don't understand what I am saying.

There is a difference between a restaurant and a manufacturer of cabinetry. There is a difference between an author and a manufacturer of cabinetry. If I go to a restaurant, I expect, based on the reputation, the cost of the food, etc, that the quality will be of a particular level. I don't expect to get a McDonald's hamburger from a four star restaurant. If I'm buying a trashy novel from the bookstore at the airport, to lull me to sleep on a plane, I don't expect the quality of writing I'd get from someone who won the Nobel Prize for literature.

But, if I go to the hardware store to get supply lines for the new faucet I'm installing in my bathroom, I DO expect several price points, and several quality points, from the same manufacturer.

There is a reason that there is a grade of all sorts of products for building a home that's called "builder grade"--it's cheap stuff that is bought in bulk, in order to finish a home in an inexpensive manner. LOL, my home was full of it, although, we've been slowly replacing the crummy faucets and the horribly cheap cabinet hardware, as we go along. The builder grade millwork is a much bigger proposition! The fact is, though, that the same lumberyard where that mediocre millwork was purchased also carries lovely, nice stuff.

Just the same, IKEA carries the equivalent of builder grade cabinets, for those who need or want SOMETHING in their kitchens. The difference is that the quality of the materials may be somewhat less than the materials in their more expensive lines, but the quality of workmanship in the assembly is absolutely not related at all to the manufacturer: it's the end user, or whoever they hire, who governs.

To assume that all the products sold by a manufacturer are of poor quality, having only experience with the lowest end of the product line, assembled by unskilled and uncaring end users, THAT's what I consider a bit unfair.
5 Likes   December 24, 2013 at 10:39AM
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Lizabeth
Mickisue, I agree with your point. There is variety in the quality of the Ikea's kitchen cabinet doors. The wood frame doors are by far the best in their line.
Assembly does make a huge difference as well. A friend of mine working in a high end furniture store hired their furniture tech, a man with 40 plus years experience in casegoods who agreed to assemble and assist in her kitchen install. He took his time, did a few tweaks, adding a bit of glue here and there, made sure all was level and doors opened properly and despite kids and dogs, her kitchen is still going strong after 15 years of use.
4 Likes   December 24, 2013 at 11:31AM
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Becky Shankle
Wow I'm really late to this party! Erin, what did you end up going with for cabinets? (apologies if I missed the epilogue somewhere upthread)

I can contribute an assessment from both a user's and a designer's standpoint.

First, a user: I installed IKEA cabinets in my own kitchen about 4 years ago. The boxes are great & look like the day I put them in. I had custom doors made for my wall cabinets, and used IKEA's wood veneered slab doors on my base cabinets. Wear & tear wise, I had one drawer dampener (Blum, for IKEA) fail in the last year or so that I replaced & is fine again. I also had a horizontal door stay hinge (Salice) fail on one of my wall cabinet doors. Also replaced that one. The corners on some of the drawer fronts are showing some wear, but nothing that light touch up with a furniture pen or minwax stick wouldn't conceal.

Ok, designer's standpoint: I've designed & installed over 80 IKEA kitchens. There are good & bad things about IKEA cabinets as with anything else on the planet. I have not had any warranty claims on any of my completed projects. I have had countless damaged doors, incorrect doors, inconsistent veneer colors on doors, and a few minor hardware issues like stripped screws or cosmetic fabrication dings. Those we replaced before the project was completed. Without exception, every delivery had at least one damaged, missing, or incorrect item that we had to correct for our clients.

IKEA is great from a price standpoint. But there are a lot of things about it that sort of cancel that out. Logistics is a big one. If you don't live near an IKEA, and the delivery AND the design isn't perfect, each trip there is increasingly painful. It's a big bureaucratic corporation with all the ills big corporations have: communication problems, employee turnover, supply chain instability. Dimensionally it's frustrating, especially in strange shaped spaces or rooms with a lot of corners and doors. It skips certain box sizes, and modifying a bigger size to make what you need both voids the warranty and introduces other problems like resizing shelves, doors & drawers.

I'd say IKEA is best suited for lower budgets with straight runs of cabinets (as few corners as possible). As long as they're assembled & installed correctly, & maintained (aligned when needed, cleaned when needed), they'll hold up as well as any other cabinet out there.

What differentiates the quality of cabinets is primarily the operational hardware. (The hardware on a bath or wardrobe cabinet from IKEA is much lower quality than the hardware on an IKEA kitchen cabinet.) It doesn't really matter what the box core material is: water doesn't get along with plywood any better than it does with particle board or MDF. And if you have that much water in your kitchen, your problems are a lot bigger than your cabinets anyway.

The second differentiator in cabinet quality is installation, which includes design. There should be adequate spacers against walls so pull hardware doesn't repeatedly bash holes in drywall, for example. Cabinet systems should also be flexible, to maximize the kind of storage someone wants, whether open shelving or behind a door. Last but not least, it should be code compliant (safe).

Everything else - color, door style, ornamental pull hardware, material, brand - is subjective. Which is probably why cabinet discussions are so passionate. :D
19 Likes   December 27, 2013 at 11:28AM
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Lori B
When we gutted our kitchen in 2003, we ordered 'good quality' cabinets from Home Depot. What came was garbage. There were paint drips down the sides and the White didn't match. It went back. We ended up finding a cheap cabinet place and put in Chinese Maple cabinets which were alright. Friends of ours did their entire kitchen in bright red cabinets from Ikea themselves and it turned out fantastic. When we redo our kitchen in our new house, we are probably going with Ikea. They have a great warranty. I will spend my Money on the floor. That is harder to replace
3 Likes   December 28, 2013 at 3:28PM
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i018485
Bottom line? ALL IKEA owners are happy. All the "pros" are nasty. Why? Because they are scared. Finally this stupid "American Custom Concept" is over. Or almost... Who cares of custom when the look is horrible? Even the ones they call "Contemporary" look like the 80ies! Still with the feet in wood and top covers, that you cannot clean underneath.
My 94 years old grandma would not put one of those old fashion ugly custom kitchen.
I wold like to have $100k for a kitchen, but to buy an Italian one, like Scavolini or Snaidero. But I don't. So, I buy IKEA, I put a fancy Brazilian granite top, with German modern and sleek hardware, and it looks great and it works better than the "custom middle age".
Plus, as some said, if I get bored, I just change the fronts, by myself, without calling those socalled "experts" that come with a paper catalogue!!!
I am building my second house and definitely the kitchen will be IKEA, with some personalization. The appliances always separate, wiithout saving.
4 Likes   December 28, 2013 at 10:04PM
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OnePlan
Is this still ongoing ?! Gosh ! If you need a hand with your planning Erin, drop me a line ! :-)
3 Likes   December 29, 2013 at 6:54AM
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shelleyuk
Still going!

This is my garage today with new ikea kitchen waiting to be checked!
6 Likes   December 29, 2013 at 8:59AM
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John James O'Brien - Design for Inspired Living
Becky Shankle, thanks for an objective post. I've installed a $100 euro (not dollar, euro) Italian kitchen and can repeat that a box is a box and deviations from "standard", that is, machine setup causes delays and raises cost in any build. Full custom CNC kitchens still produce the same box unless upgrading the wood interiors. What makes success is good design, good hardware and effective, solution oriented installation and owners who understand and make their own decisions about the effect of handing it all over to a one shop supplier ( = $$$) or are willing and patient enough to assemble the final solution from a variety of options ( = $$ and more time and inconvenience). Can't imagine why i018485 thinks pros are nasty ... I think there has been some great feedback that empowers everyone to make the choices that suit. Here's to creative solutions in 2014!
2 Likes   December 29, 2013 at 10:40AM
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mickisue
I think that particular individual scanned this lengthy thread, and found several posts from pros who are vocal in their scorn. It's always easier to find what you expect to find than what you don't. Unfortunately, really!
1 Like   December 29, 2013 at 10:54AM
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OnePlan
yes - some of us are quite nice actually !! :-)
3 Likes   December 29, 2013 at 11:58PM
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Penny Tannenbaum
We installed 2 kitchens at our Miami home 9 years ago. In the small 1 bedroom cottage we used Ikea white lacquer Stat Akurum cabinets and in the main house we had a professionally designed Kraftmaid custom kitchen, both installed by the same installer. The highly used main kitchen looks brand new, the Ikea cabinets are terrible, all yellowed, peeling, the box under the sink has swelled (no leaks) - Ikea does not stand by the product-- they say bring the cabinets back to the store where we bought them (in New Jersey and we live in Miami) - ha ha - like accident is a piece of silverware. You get what you pay for. Never again.
0 Likes   December 30, 2013 at 10:14AM
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Design Details
I've never heard so many blanket statements in my life! m3459 is right that it all comes down to self sufficiency, but I take a very strong exception to the statement that "most professionals these days [have] no pride of craft while having a great love of money". I care very much about my craft and my clients. I go far out of my way to give them the benefit of my 6 years of training and 19 years of professional experience. My customers are not the ones who buy off the shelf. Some people buy builder homes and others hire an architect. To each his/her own.
Peace, out.
5 Likes   December 30, 2013 at 10:30AM
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Aggie dba Aggie Designs
Here we are almost finished with the IKEA (RUBRIK - Stainless Fronts) Kitchen for the client. Still missing some stainless shelves we designed on the right from the Hood..
3 Likes   December 30, 2013 at 10:37AM
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Aggie dba Aggie Designs
How the shelves were supposed to be:) Hopefully soon...
1 Like   December 30, 2013 at 10:41AM
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Aggie dba Aggie Designs
@Design Details...I agree, one would have to have a wild imagination that design and building is a big money maker. To remain successful in the business, caring and going the extra mile is a must.. There is so much risk and so many expectations in this business, it's exhausting. Thank god for the good clients, they make it all worth it.
2 Likes   December 30, 2013 at 10:45AM
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Marilyn Wilkie
Penny T , IKEA Stat cabinet fronts are bottom of the line and you knew that when you bought them. You chose cheap over solid wood. So you cannot make a fair comparison to your Kraftmaid, can you? And they were willing to work with you...though you bought them far away, right?
3 Likes   December 30, 2013 at 11:58AM
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Aggie dba Aggie Designs
Solid wood doesn't guarantee quality (IKEA has Solid Wood Dressers and Shelves, and their Vanity Drawer Sides are now Solid Wood (I am at IKEA at least once a week)), and Particle Board Doesn't automatically mean - shoddy. There are big name high end companies using Particle Board, where appropriate, such as Poggenpohl, Scavolini, Valcucine. IKEA is off the shelf the least expensive nice looking stuff. Kraftmaid is not high end cabinetry even. Craft-maid, is.
5 Likes   December 30, 2013 at 12:04PM
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Lizabeth
Aggie, you are right in that solid wood does not guarantee quality and particle board is not automatically bad. There are many grades of both solid wood and particle board. It is just my opinion that in the Akururn line of cabinets, the doors with solid wood frames appear to wear better.
1 Like   December 30, 2013 at 7:54PM
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shelleyuk
Our poggenpohl kitchen is particleboard
5 Likes   January 1, 2014 at 3:34PM
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anitanazar
These are my Kraftmaid cabinets from Home Depot. I inherited these cabinets with the house. They are only 2 years old and they look like they are 20 years old. My IKEA kitchens (I've had 2 pictured in some posts above) never did this. My next kitchen is going to be IKEA again, hands down.
6 Likes   January 2, 2014 at 10:52AM
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monika2024
OK Ikea owners,, what I don't understand is how does something that is put together with cam locks hold up well? I mean to met that seems like walmart bookcases.. Or am I wrong and they are not cam locks but rather glue and staples? Is it real wood too or are they that mdf stuff with a vinyl finish on top? I like their Akurum shaker style but I'm not sure about the quality.
0 Likes   January 2, 2014 at 11:18AM
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monika2024
Lori Hazeltine Brändli: If you don't mind, what brand from HD did you go with?
0 Likes   January 2, 2014 at 11:26AM
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monika2024
anitanazar: Those are kraftmaid? Is that lower molding piece part of the cabinet box or was this and add on? Looks like cheap particle board that couldn't withstand the heat from the range (if that is a range below it). reason I ask is because I'm torn on spending more on cabinets and getting a cheaper counter or less on cabinets and getting a nice counter. And I am thinking of Kraftmaid as my parents have had them for over 20 years without a single issue. (But the quality might have changed since then.)
0 Likes   January 2, 2014 at 11:31AM
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Lori B
Monika2024, I am sorry, I don't remember. I think they were American something. They were supposed to be solid Wood, solid White cabinets. They weren't. That stuff sat in my living room for over a month. Their customer Service was garbage. Were I still living in the US, I would never go with Home Depot again.
0 Likes   January 2, 2014 at 11:37AM
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Aggie dba Aggie Designs
The Hardware on IKEA is fine, actually, the materials are lower grade than a comparable appearing Pogenpohl, for example. back in 2006 I worked for a company that was Importing to US from Poland, Atlas Kuchne and they were also producing for Poggenpohl. Comparatively with IKEA their box was indestructible, mainly because all the particle board pieces were completely sealed before assembly. So there was nothing to chip, and really no moisture to get to the particle board through the melamine except for the screw holes. The finishes were durable and beautiful. If it hadn't been for the Polish to act like I was pulling teeth every time I tried to place an order, we would have been very successful. Instead the whole thing closed down, because the factory wouldn't fill the orders on time because of some politics. We were beating IKEA prices even, with Poggenpohl Quality. What a lost opportunity and another ding to my career;)
2 Likes   January 2, 2014 at 11:48AM
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Design Details
monika, don't make the mistake of spending more on your counters than the cabinets. If the cabinets ever give out you'll be stuck. It's very easy to change out laminate counters and they are 1/3 the price of any other material. I'd also pay a visit to a designer or showroom that several quality levels of cabinets. In some sense all cabinet boxes are similar, but it's not the material alone that makes the difference. Several of the big name, lower tier cabinet companies (K.....) are known for poor finish quality, and some for poor construction. If you're trying to save money by going with a stock cabinet, look for a Marsh Furniture Company dealer. They are made in High Point, NC by a 100 year old company and the finish and construction are spectacular. They are also the nicest people I've ever done business with.
2 Likes   January 2, 2014 at 11:59AM
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salex
I haven't seen any mention of the materials used to construct doors and boxes. For me, the materials are the reason I will not buy Ikea cabinets. Ikea boxes and doors are nearly all made of medium density fiberboard (MDF); the same is true of most semi-custom cabinets from big-box stores. It costs a little more - not much - to get a local, small-time cabinet shop to make boxes from plywood rather than MDF, and then use solid wood for doors (and face frames, if they're used). Many people think that MDF is fine for cabinetry, and they're mostly right - but if you have any moisture/water issues, your entire kitchen will likely be ruined. Plywood can also be ruined but it's a lot more moisture-resistant than MDF, and it can be nearly as dimensionally stable as MDF when the cabinetmaker uses good joinery and solid wood structural supports.
However, I WILL buy the same Blum hardware, the same leveling legs, and the same interior organizers/fittings used in Ikea cabinets (they are fantastic!).
(Disclaimer: the quality vs. price of Ikea and other semi-custom cabinetry motivated me to learn to make my own cabinets, so I do have a bit of a wild hair in me. I do not sell any of my cabinetry, however - I make it only to satisfy my personal taste for classic looks and good quality.)
4 Likes   January 2, 2014 at 12:27PM
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anitanazar
@ monika2024: the previous owners installed the cabinets for resale so he did not use them they were new. I took a door into HD and they told me it was Kraftmaid but the lower end of their line, called Distinction. They don't make it anymore so I can't even find the same colour to replace the valance trim! So maybe their higher end lines are better, I am not sure. And yes, I have a gas stove so the heat just peeled away the veneer on the trim. I've had IKEA cabinets right near a gas stove in my old house. I used the kitchen for 4 years and not one problem. And I cook a lot. Everyday on high burners. Hope this helps.
1 Like   January 2, 2014 at 1:17PM
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mickisue
Monika, why would cam locks be an issue for you? Properly installed, they are wonderful! They hold tight, can be removed without damaging the item, and don't require heavy equipment or industrial glues to put together.

I'm typing this right now with my laptop sitting on a desk from Overstock that I put together using cam locks. It's incredibly heavy, incredibly sturdy, and incredibly lovely, with beautiful veneers over the MDF, and solid wood faces on the drawers, and the legs are solid, as well.
5 Likes   January 2, 2014 at 8:43PM
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monika2024
mickisue: I guess I think of walmart furniture when I see cam locks and the fact that it's not permanent- rather temporary or not real furniture.. I don't know.. something about cam locks bothers me.
0 Likes   January 3, 2014 at 3:25PM
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mickisue
I see. But I don't see, if that makes sense. One of the things that will inevitably happen in our lives, if we live long enough, is that we'll move. And the ability to take our furniture apart, without breaking it, is an advantage, to me.

I'm also married to a man who NEVER nails anything, because he wants to be able to pull off parts that are faulty, and screws make it easier. In reality, though, there are cabinets for all our tastes, and all our budgets. Enough people, all over the world, buy IKEA cabinets, and have lived with them long enough, that the reliability of them is pretty well established.

As I mention upthread, our cabinets were custom made, and are nearly as shoddy as the Kraftmaid from Menards. They just cost more.
3 Likes   January 3, 2014 at 3:43PM
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m3459
mickisue, you married a wise man ;-)
0 Likes   January 3, 2014 at 4:24PM
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robertfletcher
I just finished my first Ikea kitchen for my house. 3000# of cabinets and accessories were delivered to my house all at one time. It was a bit overwhelming inventorying the boxes and bags of parts. But once i got going, i must admit it was great fun seeing it all come together. I am a structural engineer and pretty good at DYI. I have built my own cabinets from scratch in the past so it was pretty straightforward putting everything together. The Ikea parts were all there...nothing was missing. Two drawers were damaged in shipping. Ikea replaces anything without question. The cabinets are superior to recent Home Depot cabinets which were inferior workmanship, staples that missing their targets and split and cracked particle board. The cost was about 1/3 of what my other cabinet quotes were.

Structurally, these cabinets are adequate for anything i foresee using them for. The carcases will be in compression under loading. I will not be twisting , sliding or torquing them in any way. The drawers are metal and the hardware in Blum. The surfaces are not solid wood but the finish is quite resistance to scratching. Nothing was scratched during construction and we used the kitchen as we built it.....great fun! Tools and food on the counter at the same time. haha!

All of my engineer and construction buddies came out to see the final product...and they are natural critics. They were quite surprised at the quality and look of the Ikea cabinets. They kept saying, "I can't believe that these are Ikea!" followed closely by " I can't believe that I paid so much more for my cabinets...."

To be fair, I did the assembly and installation, not a time and materials contractor. If i added up all of my time and added that onto the material cost, it would have been expensive, especially at my hourly rate! But I got to have all of the fun, so in the end "it was priceless."
8 Likes   January 29, 2014 at 6:07AM
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shelleyuk
Do you have any pictures robert?
2 Likes   January 29, 2014 at 6:44AM
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Patricia Colwell
These are 2 ikea kitchens I have installed for clients 2/ 17 LOVE Ikea great warranty and some of the kitchens I have done are already 15 yrs. old and no problems.
4 Likes   January 29, 2014 at 6:56AM
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Nancy Travisinteriors
Ikea has come a long way in 4-5 years. They sell a good product. They also install all their own stuff now. The only way to go. Most contractors didn't like to install Ikea, because it was more difficult than other brands. But now that they have installers that part is done. Saw comment about bull nosed granite not working with Ikea. Don't know about that. But I do know that a straight edge over bull nosed is preferred now. It's a more updated look. Ikea cabs are very modern look. So if going a traditional look Ikea isn't for you.
1 Like   January 29, 2014 at 11:29AM
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Nancy Travisinteriors
I just saw that this is a old post. And I don't read all. So you might be done with this project . If so hope it worked out.
1 Like   January 29, 2014 at 11:31AM
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Nancy Travisinteriors
Did the home owner of this post, even once response to other post? I don't think so.
1 Like   January 29, 2014 at 11:41AM
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mefor
Never :)
You know these ikea posts take on a life of their own, hi Travis :)))
0 Likes   January 29, 2014 at 12:17PM
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Becky Shankle
I would say that if you want an Ikea kitchen and you're in the US, get it before 2015. They are rolling out a completely new kitchen cabinet line, & it is, in my opinion, a change for the worse, hardware quality wise. I've been a staunch Ikea fan for years, so stepping away from that should say something.
0 Likes   January 29, 2014 at 12:25PM
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shelleyuk
lots more variety though. I have my ikea kitchen sitting waiting in my garage to be fitted and am rather annoyed that they've have now introduced the little cupboards to extend the height of the wall units (Metod comes in next month in the UK).
0 Likes   January 29, 2014 at 3:24PM
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Becky Shankle
I agree that aesthetically it's nice to see what they come up with. I'm just not convinced of the hardware quality.
0 Likes   January 29, 2014 at 3:30PM
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shelleyuk
Certainly here in the UK you can continue to order using the old boxes and hardware for months even though Metod is coming in next month. So you guys in the US will be ok for a fair time yet. I'm sure if they start getting negative feedback about the hardware they'll change it back pretty quickly. Have you seen the new hardware Becky? We can't see it yet here even though its literally in in a couple of weeks.
0 Likes   January 29, 2014 at 3:41PM
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Becky Shankle
I've seen the assembly docs, I'm concerned about the elimination of the stretchers & having base cabinets hung on a rail like the wall cabinets. I think the system as it is now is fine.
0 Likes   January 29, 2014 at 4:03PM
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Marilyn Wilkie
Becky, what are the changes to the hardware you are talking about? Isn't it still the German made Blum?

Here is what I found. The hinges are the same. The drawers are different. http://www.ikea.com/eg/en/catalog/categories/departments/kitchen/24255/
0 Likes   January 29, 2014 at 5:12PM
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Hal Braswell
Planning to gut our kitchen this summer, and here has been our process on choosing a cabinet brand.

1. Don't want particleboard boxes. That eliminated IKEA and means I'm going to pay extra for all plywood construction because I think it is worth it.

2. I don't want birch doors. Birch isn't bad, but maple is much harder. Don't like oak. Avoiding birch eliminated Cabinets To Go.

3. Cost of new kitchen as a percent of home value. This is important for a loan or for resale purposes. Living in an older house where the home values are set, going with Schuler cabinets that are all wood means I would have to cut back on the number of cabinets.

4. My wife wants painted white cabinets, not thermofoil. Also don't want melamine. Because my wife is short and we both have lifting issues, we will be using pretty much just base cabinets.i also plan to build in some open shelving in a closet with birch plywood and poplar trim that I will paint.

5. Shenandoah cabinets with all plywood construction from Lowes makes the most sense for us in terms of price, color and style.

If I was OK with particleboard and if IKEA had a white finish we liked, I would have considered IKEA except that we live outside their delivery area and would have had to rent a U-Haul truck and drive 8 hours round trip and probably spend the night in a motel.
0 Likes   January 29, 2014 at 5:45PM
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PirateFoxy
I want to know more about this change that's coming with Ikea cabinets. We were thinking of redoing the kitchen in the next year or two and so far I prefer the feel of the Ikea soft close drawers to the other ones I've tried. I am not going to be a happy camper if they're changing to a different style that's more like the ones I hate.
0 Likes   January 29, 2014 at 6:53PM
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Marilyn Wilkie
PirateFoxy, the soft close drawers and doors will remain the same, as will the hinges. You can look at the link I added above or, Google Ikea Metod and get more links.
OK, Metod will replace Akurum in the US in 2015. I'm not sure I like the changes, but some people are excited about them. Here is a pdf that someone posted on Ikeafans that talks a bit about Metod. It has already been introduced in Europe as you know. The link I posted above is from Egypt, but it shows the same things we will have here. Here is the pdf.
http://franchisor.ikea.com/Whoweare/Documents/Facts%20and%20Figures%202013.pdf
0 Likes   January 29, 2014 at 7:15PM
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Marilyn Wilkie
This might be the best video I found on Metod. Most styles are too stripped down modern to me. But some approach more traditional or shaker.
0 Likes   January 29, 2014 at 7:59PM
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shelleyuk
They have changed the names of some styles but still have adel lindigo and ramsjo.
0 Likes   January 30, 2014 at 12:24AM
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PirateFoxy
Wow, most of the new styles are not to my taste at all. :(
0 Likes   January 30, 2014 at 1:39AM
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monika2024
Has anyone heard of Baker cabinets? I know they are a cab door/drawer supplier and now they started their own cabinets. I'm thinking i might go that route since there's no particle board and they use screws not cam locks..
0 Likes   January 30, 2014 at 4:01AM
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monika2024
Ooops i meant BARKER not baker. Theyre RTA but fully customizable
0 Likes   January 30, 2014 at 4:02AM
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Becky Shankle
I could be wrong, but it looks like a much thinner gauge they're using for those drawer runners. Not a good idea to cheap out on drawer hardware, especially, since they carry much heavier loads than a door.
0 Likes   January 30, 2014 at 6:24AM
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Patricia Colwell
There is no advantage to screws over cam lock and the reason particle board is used for frames is that it is very stable and doesn't expand and contact in different weather. As for the drawers I have cast iron cookware in a 36" drawer from Ikea with no problems. Usually when Ikea introduces something new it is an improvement so I guess we wait for Metod.
2 Likes   January 30, 2014 at 6:30AM
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Becky Shankle
Yep! Proof is in the pudding. :D
0 Likes   January 30, 2014 at 6:31AM
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Marilyn Wilkie
At 1:45 in the video you see the drawer runner. It looks hefty to me. I like some of the new interior features...drawers behind doors, etc. The main problem I see is that these are metric sizes. I don't think they will be making them in our measurement system. That could also be a problem if you want to use an aftermarket door on them. I'm also sad that they have dropped the solid butcher block counters. They were the best value around. Maybe they will bring them back some day. I don't think I will be re-doing another kitchen in my lifetime however.
0 Likes   January 30, 2014 at 7:38AM
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mickisue
Have they ever been made in inch/foot system? It would seem wasteful, from an economy of scale POV, because we are the only country in the world to use it.

As for the newer styles, I really like them. But then, I drool over the stark, sleek kitchens by the designers in Milan, all the while knowing that I will not be buying them.

To know that I can install such a gorgeous kitchen in my apartment in Italy, when I retire, is a wonderful thing.
1 Like   January 30, 2014 at 7:47AM
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shelleyuk
They have two different styles of box. Ours over here in Europe is currently called faktum and it is metric (although in the UK we use both metric and imperial). Yours is called Akurum?? They are different sizes by a very small amount (yours are fractionally bigger). I suspect the same will apply with the new boxes and they'll deem the US a large enough market to make it worth having two different sizes.
1 Like   January 30, 2014 at 8:09AM
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mickisue
Entirely possible. I haven't really looked that hard at the IKEA cabinets, other than the closet ones--I use one to store paper items needed in my business, and my daughter's bedroom "closet" is an IKEA wonder. Italian apartments tend not to have closets, as I'm sure you know!

At any rate, wringing one's hands over changes that haven't been spelled out, on items that can only be seen in photos and/or video, seems unhelpful to me.

My high school and college French are far enough in the rearview mirror that I couldn't really understand what was being said. But it was pretty clear that the goal of that video was to make the new line appear enticing to the large number of potential customers in France who want sleek.

Changing pulls, adding/subtracting accessories can make a huge difference in the feel of a kitchen. Perhaps IKEA, in the US, will go for a softer feel when they roll out the new line?
0 Likes   January 30, 2014 at 8:28AM
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monika2024
Patricia Colwell: the reason I'm not a fan of particle board is cause we had a leak under the sink and our particle board cabinet based swelled up and now looks awful as that is the nature of it, had it been solid wood it would have just dried and been fine. Plus my particle board shelves sag but my moms solid wood don't. So no particle board for me. Screws ad glue seem more durable than cam locks. My office desk was particle board with cam locks and the area around the cam lock cracked and wore out a bit and then everything became loose and wobbly, which is why I' avoiding this now. I was hoping Ikea would make something more solid but I guess that's not going to happen.
0 Likes   January 30, 2014 at 7:35PM
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mickisue
I have a solid wood armoire in my bedroom. The door on the right side has a loose handle, because, over the years, the wood around it has worn and the screw that holds the handle in place is loose. I guess sold walnut is a bad choice then, right?

ANY wood based material that is used enough, or subjected to enough stress, whether over use, water or weight, will deteriorate. particleboard swells. Plywood delaminates. Wood swells, too.

Anyone has the right to his or her opinion on what is or isn't right for them. But it's helpful to have one's opinion backed up by the facts, not just impressions.
3 Likes   January 30, 2014 at 7:57PM
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kmkane
Hi Erin, I'm so sorry all these people are so mean to each other. What a shame, and how embarrassing for them, especially since I see them on so many other Houzz forums. Anyway, I have two kitchens. One has cabinets made my a local cabinet builder, and is on the wet side of the mountains. It is used slightly more than the other. The other has Ikea cabinets. It is on the dry side of the mountains. The local cabinets look much like the Ikea ones, both look nice. The Ikea cabs are the top of the line. However, there are several striking differences. The heft of the doors are quite different - Ikea's are thin and try as I might to baffle them with felt pads, they rattle and I fear ever having to hold myself up by a door handle if I slip. The locally-made doors are heavier, the hinges are thicker and stronger, and the drawers are smoother, sturdier and don't wiggle. The Ikea finish is dulling faster than the locally-made. Also, the melamine on the Ikea ones (under the sink) is very thin and is buckling from moisture, the locally made melamine must be a thicker grade, or is glued down better, because it isn't doing that at all. At any rate, overall, I just think the materials are better with the locally-made cabinets. I guess it all depends on how you and your family use your kitchen, what your local weather/climate is like, what you actually SEE and FEEL, what the dollar amount ends up to be, what you VALUE, what your plans for your home are, what your local choices are, etc. I'm in a city where I had lots of choices, and I generally stay away from the big box stores. However, if there's one thing I will advise, it's this - DO talk to designers, find one you feel comfortable with, their initial advice is free, and do compare prices. My cabinets, in the end, cost only slightly more than the Ikea cabinets. Now THAT'S SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT!!!!!
2 Likes   January 30, 2014 at 11:29PM
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PirateFoxy
I don't know about locally made necessarily being better - I went to a home show recently that had a lot of local folks who would have probably been at the Ikea price point or higher for cabinets, and while they sometimes had fancier looking details on doors and so on, the actual construction quality wasn't overly impressive, and I expect that if they have a kitchen they're taking to shows that they'd want to put the best foot forward in terms of finish and hardware. So for sure I'd want to see the items in a showroom or similar environment where I could poke and prod at them and where they'd likely been handled by many other people doing the same - to get some kind of representation of how they'll wear over time.
1 Like   January 31, 2014 at 12:30AM
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Becky Shankle
kmkane makes a great point:

"My cabinets, in the end, cost only slightly more than the Ikea cabinets. "

The other thing I've noticed over the past 2 years especially is that Ikea's cabinet prices have increased significantly.

Still, it bears repeating that you should get what you like & are comfortable with. It's YOUR kitchen!
0 Likes   January 31, 2014 at 5:18AM
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longgreenhouse
Honestly, whether or not the cabinet handles could keep me up if I slipped in the kitchen was NOT one of my considerations when choosing my cabinets...
6 Likes   January 31, 2014 at 6:38AM
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robertfletcher
Some very good advice has been offered here. It's all relevant depending on your situation, as several people have pointed out. For me, i keep returning to the design purpose of the cabinets and how they are expected to perform. If you are going to put cabinets in a potentially wet environment, then wood/particle board is not a good choice. Options are to fix the environment or plan on the cabinets being wet and use a material that will not be impacted by water. Most will. If you are planning to use cabinet doors as a means of supporting your body weight to stand, then the bending moment exerted on the hinges will be far greater than if you use them to hide what's in the cabinet. A grab bar is another option.

Short story. When i demolished my old cabinets circa 1980's, some were particle board and some were plywood. I stood the least salvageable ones in the driveway and "disassembled" them with a carpenter's hammer. It generally took about 4 or 5 hammer blows to reduce them to their component parts, regardless of type of construction. That is because they were being subjected to a force from a direction that was different from their design load, which generally is compression normal to the floor.

so.....if you're going to jump on, hang on, slide around, kick, wash on or in, hose down, dance on or drive on, pound on (other than steak diane) or generally push cabinets beyond their design limits, there may be some damage over time. ( And we all have done one or more of the above at some point). :) That's why we have chosen to do a kitchen remodel and are dreaming of all of those beautiful Houzz kitchens, with clean surfaces...no kids or pets in view....no dirty dishes in the sink....no papers piled on the counter.....just clean, shiny, glorious, creative textures and colors and ideas....sigh...don't you just love it?

Out here.
6 Likes   January 31, 2014 at 6:41AM
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longgreenhouse
You don't have to do a remodel to wash the dishes and put them away, remove papers to a desk, and exile kids and pets out of your view, if that's what makes you happy.
0 Likes   January 31, 2014 at 7:07AM
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mickisue
Great points, Robert.

I hope I don't get counted among the "mean" people in this thread. Because I like to think of myself as rational, not mean. As you pointed out, any wood based product, when wet, will perform in a less than stellar fashion. As PirateFoxy pointed out, "local" is not synonymous with "high quality"--every cabinetmaker's product needs to be evaluated on its own merits.

I mentioned above that the cabinets in my kitchen are solid wood, locally made and custom. And, to put it bluntly, they suck. There are numerous spots where the finishing detail was sloppy, and several doors have holes in them, apparently drilled for accessories that don't exist. The left hand door under the cooktop developed a crack in the first two years we lived here; it's held together with two braces, screwed in from the back. I learned, last summer when refinishing them, to take great care in sanding the detail areas, because there WOULD be splinters from poorly done finish work.

If what you are looking for is superior quality in cabinetry, tongue in groove would be the way to go. Glue and staple=cheap and fast.

If you want quality, and can't afford really well made, custom cabinets, I'd go for a manufacturer that makes, and unconditionally guarantees thousands and thousands of cabinets for worldwide use, like IKEA.

Standardization may not be your cup of tea. But it's the standardization of parts and construction that make it possible for us to drive cars at 80 MPH without worrying that they'll fall apart. It's the standardization of parts and construction that allows IKEA to offer such a generous warranty.
3 Likes   January 31, 2014 at 7:15AM
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Becky Shankle
You seem pretty rational to me, mickisue!

To your point about warranty, I would be curious to hear abut anyone's experiences making claims on Ikea's cabinet warranty.
0 Likes   January 31, 2014 at 7:41AM
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kmkane
Oh my goodness! Why is it that anyone offering a thought here THAT ERIN ASKED FOR gets picked apart? OK frequent commenters, we get your points, (ad nauseum) now let the rest of us make one and let Erin decide.
1 Like   January 31, 2014 at 7:44AM
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mickisue
KM, it appears that Erin has left the building. So far as I can see, she left the one OP, and never was heard from again. Making a point is fine. AND if the point isn't backed by data, one ought to expect for it to be "picked apart."

Feel free to pick mine apart if they aren't factual/rational. LOL, I used to work as a nurse and case manager. We got paid to pick things apart.
0 Likes   January 31, 2014 at 7:52AM
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robertfletcher
I am checking out of this thread folks. Gotta go make a living. My countertops arrive in two weeks. One of them is red so I will post some pictures when it's done. Ciao.
0 Likes   January 31, 2014 at 8:05AM
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Becky Shankle
right behind you, Robert.
0 Likes   January 31, 2014 at 8:12AM
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kmkane
No thanks mickisue. Knock yourself out. I was here for Erin, not an argument. I'm with Robert and Becky.
1 Like   January 31, 2014 at 9:17AM
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mefor
?
0 Likes   January 31, 2014 at 10:05AM
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mickisue
Becky, upthread, at least a couple of posters mention that they got replacements, free with no hassle, when they had some problems.
0 Likes   January 31, 2014 at 9:43PM
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Janis Pressley-Griffin
4 years ago I completely had my kitchen gutted, except for a brand new stainless steel refrigerator I had just purchased. It's a small 12 x 14 kitchen and I bought a 5 burner gas stove, dishwasher and hood at Sears, all on sale for !500.00, My kitchen cabinets and countertop cost a little over $5600.00 (on sale). I also have a peninsula with Ikea cabinets underneath and a beautiful granite countertop that was a scrap piece, left over from someone's counter for $400.00. I had a contractor install everything. Funny thing is, all the cabinets came in boxes that had "Made In Italy" stamped on them. I'm 66 years old and the cabinets are warranted for 25 years and if I'm still alive then, I won't care how they look. I had my bath gutted, except for the tub, new flooring put down in the bath, hall, den and kitchen, all for $20,000.00. The cabinets from Lowes,,just the cabinets were quoted at $15,000.00. So, I am a happy camper now.
2 Likes   January 31, 2014 at 11:41PM
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Frederic
This is an ikea kitchen with custom drawers and doors. It was an enormous logistical challenge but the savings allowed for a great deal of upgrades that we couldn't have gotten at the price point.
4 Likes   April 19, 2014 at 2:20PM
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dodgeman69
There is something it seems nobody has commented on. Plywood contruction is far superior to partical board or MDF. It is simply much stronger. Planes were built with it for decades. Some are still flying. Maybe you've seen the British Spitfire at an airshow. You could not build that from partical board or MDF.
However... how long do you expect to use that kitchen for? I know you can find solid wood cabinets still in use from well over 50 years ago. Who the (blank) wants to eat something that was cooked in that kitchen? The cheap junk (as some want to refer to it as) is largely strong enough to survive the useful life of a kitchen. Some cabinet builders really use junk that won't last 2 years. That is what I was afraid IKEA might be doing and why is have been researching. After reading this thread I feel confident in purchasing IKEA cabinets for my new build. I'll decide after I get the costs for the whole house. The only concern I have left is the off gasing of formaldehyde and such from the particle board. (Yes, that and other chemicals are added to these wood base products). I would prefer to buy solid wood or plywood. I know it is better. I know it is stronger. But in most cases it is not needed so buying this would be wasting money. If it turns out I can afford the other cabinets I'll likely buy them, . . but then I'm known for wasting money this way. If my wife has some input then I'll likely be buying the less expensive and using the savings on something else like stupidly expensive appliances. Like maybe a La Cornue Grand Palais Range. She likes red...
1 Like   May 12, 2014 at 4:40PM
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Amy Schultz
I wouldn't put any type of stone, quartz, or concrete on the cabinets. They are not sturdy and won't hold up.
0 Likes   May 13, 2014 at 12:20PM
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dodgeman69
So why do they sell it at IKEA? Then give a 25 year warranty? You forget the the cabinet is braced against a wall and each section of cabinet is a box, which is very strong, and then braced against several other boxes. If you tape closed all the opening flaps on a cardboard box, put a flat solid surface onit like stone, you can then stand on it. It's cardboard. MDF or partical board is very strong. It does sag if not braced, like in an unsupported shelf. But in this case all the force is on the edge and not on the length. I'm going to argue this and I HATE partical board or MDF. I am even allergic to it when I cut it. Itches like crazy.
3 Likes   May 13, 2014 at 1:25PM
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midmodfan
Amy, do you have any proof for your statement?
IKEA sells quartz counters (at least in Europe) and I have not heard of any problems. We have our third IKEA kitchen and the cabinets always hold up very well.
4 Likes   May 13, 2014 at 1:45PM
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mefor
Maybe her company has agreements with kitchen cabinet manufacturers or retailers?
1 Like   May 13, 2014 at 2:39PM
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mickisue
Me, too. On the liking the sturdiness of particleboard and MDF and hating all the chemicals. OTOH, unless you pay for an artisan who uses only natural finishes (and they, too, can be toxic) the stuff used to finish hardwoods can be terrifically irritating to skin and lungs.
0 Likes   May 13, 2014 at 2:57PM
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dodgeman69
Actually I personally don't like the sturdiness of the product. I'm just saying it is strong enough to serve the purpose it is used for. I would not at all consider it incapable of holding up a stone countertop.
On the chemicals used to finish the surfaces... they dry. Off gassing is not a concern once cured. Partical materials do not cure and have off gasing most of their life. There are many chemicals in your home. The question is how much can you put up with? Are you willing to accept what comes from the cabinets?
Probably most of your furniture is already partical board anyway though. My expensive teak coffee table needed diassembly. I was disapointed to find it was only faced wih teak. An old wood coffee table my parents bought back in the 60's got water damage. Trying to sand it out I found even this was some sort of partical board! Since I'm sensitive to it I'd prefer not to use it. But then the cost...

At first glance there seems to be a comparable product though. Barker cabinets that I think I saw in this string. I'll be pricing those soon. They are flat packed like IKEA. Since I'm in Canada shipping is an issue. But I'd prefer to buy American since our economies are somewhat linked, plus US made can often be more durable.
0 Likes   May 13, 2014 at 7:33PM
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megcblu
Normally I live by the saying "Buy only the best and you only cry once" but when we bought our first house last year (after always living in condos or rentals) I had a unique dilemma. We needed to move into our house in 3 weeks time. Our new house was a small post war cape built in 1946. It had the original galley kitchen with hardly any cabinets or place for modern appliances. There was no time to shop around or reconfigure layouts etc. I measured, spent a day at ikea using their software and designed a great beautiful functional kitchen. I then found a local carpenter (who used to be one of ikeas head carpenters) who specializes in installing ikea kitchens. The cabinets cost about $3500 (including their gas range) and the install was $1200. It was such a smooth install- started at 8 am and by 2 pm they were done. one guy gets to work assembling the caninets while the other is prepping using levels etc. I picked the Sofielund fronts which are a knock off of the Pogenpohl cabinets. So beautiful and durable! We have a 2 and 5 y.o. and no problems at all. The soft close hardware is very nice/ no slamming. I plan on using Ikea whenever possible for cabinetry. The carpenter I used, also informed me since he is so familiar with the Ikea lines that essentially you have to think of all ikea lines as semi-custom. If you like the kitchen cabinets no problem to use them in the bathroom, home office etc. which I would have never thought of. A few weeks later he installed cabinets for me in a very tight laundry area off the kitchen. We used the white Adel fronts. We have a stackable unit so he put a 30" cabinet over with a panel ti the right to make the unit look built in. Next to that he cut the back off a kitchen base cabinet since we had some width but not enough depth for the standard base cabinets. He finished that off with the grey laminate counter and now I have storage and folding space in my tiny laundry. I will now be using the ikea base cabinets for a custom 90" built in desk with one of their laminate counters in a home office. If you want good looks on a tight budget ikea cannot be beat. This may not be my forever house but I still want it to look good. I may want something else in 5-10 yrs. bit had I spent a lot more I would feel bad changing it. So for me it's the best of both worlds.
2 Likes   May 13, 2014 at 10:17PM
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Frederic
@megcbu, I customize ikea cabs all the time. Here is a standard base cabinet modified for a 7 inch depth. Took about 35 minutes to cut it down and assemble. A custom cabs would have been $200 easy.
1 Like   May 16, 2014 at 9:04AM
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samandjoeshow
Ikea is the absolute worst. It is just not worth dealing with the incompetent people who work there, having to return countless boxes that have broken pieces, and if you have to have items delivered that is a whole new can of worms. In the end the amount of money you think you save with Ikea is lost with dealing with an incompetent company that has horrible customer service.
0 Likes   May 23, 2014 at 11:24AM
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mickisue
Hi, samandjoeshow. Is this from personal experience? I ask because, while I've not bought kitchen cabinets from IKEA, I have bought bookshelves, furniture and other DIY things from them. There has never, IME, been anything broken, and the customer service I've experienced has been stellar.
0 Likes   May 23, 2014 at 1:26PM
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midmodfan
We've bought three IKEA kitchens and an Alno kitchen over the last 25 years. My experience is that no manufacturer is immune to broken pieces. Alno, for instance, delivered three countertops until we got one without scuffs.

The worst customer experience I ever had was with Sears, but I would not generalize and say that Sears is an incompetent company with a horrible customer service.

At IKEA you can buy good furniture -- and rather cheap pieces that I personally would not touch. Make an ill-informed choice and you'll be disappointed. C'est la vie.
2 Likes   May 23, 2014 at 2:48PM
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Fiona Taylor
I would absolutely disagree with the person who says big box stores are a better value. In my old home, I went to a big box store and it was a disaster. The installation was smooth, but the product used a new type of adhesive and EVERY SINGLE door and other faced cabinet surface had to be redone--and some of them had to be redone TWICE.

I went with Ikea in my next home. The installation was not as smooth, but the product is infinitely better. Plus, I spent less than half of the amount I spent on the defective, big-name-brand item. It was definitely a brand name you all would know, too.
0 Likes   June 8, 2014 at 8:14PM
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Fiona Taylor
By the way, the reason I chose Ikea in the first place is that one of my best friends, an architect, did her magazine-worthy kitchen using Ikea cabinets. Everything else was high-end. She's had it for 10 years with no issues--and it's still drop-dead gorgeous.
1 Like   June 8, 2014 at 8:19PM
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sally78
We have used Ikea cabinets in laundry rooms (two different houses) and a basement kitchen area in one house and wet bar in another (making a total "use" in three homes).

My husband installed single-handedly (with only a little lift-and-hold) assistance from me. He had no problem--he is a very handy man : ) All turned out very well each time. Positive experiences buying, assembling, and hanging (those that were hung on the wall).

I found them durable to use and attractive. That is why we have returned to use their cabinets again and again… Easy to buy. Lots of choices.
1 Like   June 8, 2014 at 8:39PM
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dodgeman69
How did it happen that it got forgotten that ikea is a big box store? I'd bet ikea has far greater sales volume than whatever store was being criticized. Plus they've got the biggest box shaped stores of all!
0 Likes   June 10, 2014 at 7:13AM
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designideas4me
The comments by the rich snobs who can easily spend 30-50k on a kitchen are stupid because obviously people who choose IKEA cabinets and kitchens are much more down to earth and practical and also dont choose to spend that kind of cash on a kitchen even if they could. Rich snobs shouldnt even be allowed to comment when they try to compare custom woodwork to Ikea. They obviously are missing the point.
0 Likes   June 18, 2014 at 2:41AM
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MS Colours Inc
I can only assume those individuals who had the sense to see value and make a lot of money certainly have enough sense to spend it.
1 Like   June 18, 2014 at 6:10AM
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Circle Goods Reclaimed
designideas4me It is possible to spend 30 to 50k on an over the top award winning custom kitchen but we have built kitchens for people that priced out kitchens at Lowe's or Home Depot and been right in line with them. So take it easy on calling people rich snobs they don't have to be rich or snobby not to choose to buy at IKEA. And why would they when quality woodworkers can build them cabinets much nicer for just a little more. There are different opinions and answers for everyone. Doesn't mean they are snobs.
2 Likes   June 18, 2014 at 8:14AM
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JudyG Designs
My daughter installed her IKEA kitchen. It turned out to be a great space and the cabinets and drawers are incredible. Based on her recommendation, we did a wet bar in the lower level and it is beautiful and sleek looking. Now we are moving and we took advantage of the IKEA sale and will install the cabinets in our new home.

From my limited experience with the product, I will give IKEA cabinets 5 stars...good looks, good interior fittings, and, so far, good performance.

What I like most is that you can custom the look with hardware, counter tops and appliances of your choice. Add a beautiful floor, great paint colors and you have a "designer" kitchen and change in your wallet.
0 Likes   June 18, 2014 at 8:25AM
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lindanorby
My daughter and son-in-law, who
both cook, had Ikea design their kitchen ($200 for in-home measuring), a contractor assembled and installed. They are very pleased with it. They used a quartz countertop, not from Ikea. I have a larger budget, but after weighing several options, I am going to use Ikea in my condo renovation.
1 Like   June 18, 2014 at 8:36AM
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mickisue
Hmmmmm...I don't have a problem with people choosing to go with custom cabinetry or spending whatever they can afford on a kitchen. We have the income and credit to spend a LOT if we wanted to. But travel and other experiences are more important to us, so we haven't. Neither do we buy a $10,000 couch, when a $1000 one will suffice for us.

It's one thing to want custom for oneself, or to take pride in one's work. It's another entirely, to make blanket statements (IKEA is poor quality) (RIch people, who are snobs, don't like IKEA) about a product or a group of people, based on biased beliefs.

Everyone has the right to believe whatever they want to, about a product or about a group. Me, I will never own a GM product. They may make great cars, but I don't like them. But that doesn't make you a fool for buying one, does it?

What none of us has is the right to assume that our beliefs are facts, and to assume that those who disagree are, at best, misguided, at worst actively stupid or evil.
2 Likes   June 18, 2014 at 9:34AM
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Capital Kitchen & Bath
Have you tried a local cabinet dealer/re-modeler? Many will offer several lines of cabinetry and tops for different styles and budgets. Many will offer in house kitchen design and installation. It would be easier for you to hire one person/company to do all of your work!
0 Likes   June 18, 2014 at 10:00AM
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mickisue
The issue for many is that the quality of local remodelers and their cabinet makers varies so greatly. You pretty much know that if you buy from Lowe's or Home Depot, for example, that you will get a so-so to poor product. From IKEA, a product that has a solid warranty, so even if there is some quality question, you can get replacement.

With a local cabinet maker, unless you are familiar with the product of that particular organization, you can be burned badly for your "custom" cabinets. And how many consumers really have any idea of the reputation of a particular cabinet maker? It's not like they're well known outside of the contractor community.

Back in the 80's, when the "Euro" look of white laminate with wood borders was brand new, my dad designed the kitchen for my new, contemporary house. He knew good from bad, and a local cabinet maker that he knew had started to make that style.

These people were good at more traditional cabinets, but, frankly, they had no experience with the newer cam locks, etc. I had a LOT of trouble with those cabinets, and no warranties to have them fixed: I had to do it myself.
0 Likes   June 18, 2014 at 11:24AM
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designideas4me
ok so here is my offer... I still have not bought a new kitchen. I have 10k to spend and would like any designer or cabinet shop on here who actually can make me or buy me the cabinets and not just design it, to show me what exact cabinets I can get and from where, for under 10k. And please make a realistic offer as for me to be able to purchase and take delivery and have installed. I live in Temecula Ca. and just referring me to a place out of the area or having a concept that isnt complete with instillation wont help. I need exact numbers and need to see what the doors will look like( at least a sample door) and a detailed drawing. Sure if I can get a better quality kitchen( please explain how and why your cabinets are better), for the same price or maybe 2,000 more, than yes I would buy it if it looks just as modern and has soft close etc. So there is my offer to anyone why wishes to compete with Ikea price and quality and looks. 12,000 for a kitchen that is 9 feet by 25 feet. I like open (glass doors and open shelves) on some of the cabinets. I also have a center island in that long L shaped kitchen which is 7ft by 3.5 feet. I have an over the range microwave and no external hood.I would love to see a direct comparison of another brand of cabinet or a custom kitchen and know exactly why the product is better. I am very serious. Sure I wish money wasnt an issue ( thus my comments earlier) but it very much is for me. I am not willing to pay 100s up front just to get a quote which many of the people on here seem to want. Ikea charges 100 bux to design the kitchen and take you through the process, not including assembly of course. Lowes does it for free. I look forward to seeing what else I can buy. I hate oak. Most other woods are fine with me.
1 Like   June 18, 2014 at 11:40AM
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Capital Kitchen & Bath
Very true. Contractors can vary greatly. There are great websites now that you can read reviews on re-modelers. And visiting a few of their showroom will give you a good idea on their quality of work and expertise. Viewing their portfolios will help as well. For example, we often beat home stores cabinet prices and our lines are of much higher quality with solid warranties. Many good contractors will also offer additional warranties on material and labor.
0 Likes   June 18, 2014 at 11:44AM
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Al Fortunato Furnituremaker
@ Capital Kitchen & Bath; You've nailed it. You got me on my soap box. Consumers need to start giving their local small businesses the first opportunity to provide whatever it is they are shopping for. They may be surprised and find that the quality and cost are comparable to national or world wide chains. They will certainly find that their local small business will provide better service and advice than any chain. After all the owner cares. If you are not satisfied with something you can go right to the top. Try that with a big box store. Most employees in a big box stores, including the managers, are just passing through anyway. So why would they care if the buyer is happy or not? The mentality of running to Lowe's, Home Depot, IKEA, Target, etc is what is hurting our economy. Who cares if their CEO has another home in the Caribbean or not. All the big boys care about is $$ to satisfy their board of directors and stockholders, not the consumer. Wake up America, buy American, shop local, buy local!
3 Likes   June 18, 2014 at 11:53AM
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O'Carroll Custom Cabinetry
If you are o.k with particle board cabinetry that looks o.k then they are fine. If you are at all concerned about quality or durability or even craftsmanship then you would be best off custom. A good custom shop as our own should be able to help you get the job done properly as well as on time. Even if that means yo need them in a few weeks.
0 Likes   June 18, 2014 at 1:06PM
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designideas4me
I contacted and received estimates from local shops and they were all much higher in price.
1 Like   June 18, 2014 at 6:43PM
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Circle Goods Reclaimed
Keep in mind it is going to be much higher because you are getting assembled cabinetry professionally installed! The local cabinet makers I guarantee you will work harder for the money as I'm sure they need it more than the CEO's at a big box store who casually take home million dollar bonus checks. Also if you are getting it from a local cabinet maker it will probably be 3/4 inch plywood core that is not the import plywood. A great cabinet maker will go above and beyond for you!
1 Like   June 19, 2014 at 7:11AM
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Aggie dba Aggie Designs
There is nothing comparable to IKEA Style in the IKEA price range, but there are many companies that will sell Knock Down Cabinets or RTA (unassembled), there are a bunch of companies here on houzz that do though, you should check them out, that is your best bet in my opinion...
http://www.houzz.com/pro/rtacabinetstore/rta-cabinet-store

Most of this stuff comes from China, of course.

I could not touch your price range with my cabinets, I will be around 24K, but of course assembled and top quality stuff.
0 Likes   June 19, 2014 at 7:32AM
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Aggie dba Aggie Designs
0 Likes   June 19, 2014 at 7:34AM
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hazeldazel
I think that's the point though, a whole LOT of people don't have 24k in their entire redo budget much less just for cabinets. For those people, going to IKEA gets them a really nice kitchen with pretty good quality while keeping the costs really low. If they are handy at all, they can keep costs even lower. OMG, it's so easy if you buy a $60 brad nailer. sooooo easy.

Also keep in mind that most homes will have their kitchens redone every 20 years or so, even for merely aesthetic reasons. This makes me cringe at the waste but that's the reality nowadays. So there's no point in going into debt for a kitchen that will last 60 years when you know it will get torn out when you sell or pass away because "it's dated".
3 Likes   June 20, 2014 at 10:20AM
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Aggie dba Aggie Designs
It's true, but most PROs don't compete for those clients that IKEA gets, if we did, we would go out of business. My own personal kitchen is an awful rickety mess, doesn't mean I can't make a living as a kitchen designer for upscale cients.
2 Likes   June 20, 2014 at 10:23AM
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Castle Kitchens and Interiors
As a small business and cabinet dealer, I really appreciate clients who like to keep their business local.
1 Like   June 27, 2014 at 9:06AM
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altonaco
purchased an ikea kitchen and island for small condo in denver area (rubrik design upper cabinets, sofielund below). used designer service; it was slow but ok. contracted for installation. project went very badly. ikea works with traemand; traemand contracts with kitchenworx in denver. when we could not get contact from installer, we tried going back through ikea. ikea was unable to improve the situation. traemand was indifferent and border-line hostile. we are too upset to give the details on kitchenworx: they were uncommunicative, untimely, left major project trash like most of a wall they had removed, installed the wrong, most visible island panel, and made us try and work out major problems with the phone receptionist. they botched electrical components with some unqualified contractor they brought in. we finally paid them off to get them out of our hair and had to get other people to correct and finish the job. ikea products seem ok but do not rely on them for installation in the denver are.
0 Likes   July 4, 2014 at 5:45PM
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dphil66
I've used IKEA kitchen cabinetry in my own house, and based on my experience with it, and my experience in my career, I thought I might help contribute to this conversation. I've worked as an engineer for a large global furniture company for many years, and have designed a lot of product in that time. I will tell you first to differentiate between "custom" cabinetry, and "manufactured" cabinetry.

"Custom" = a craftsman using limited equipment and tools to make custom cabinetry mostly out of veneered plywood, baltic birch, and hardwood. They measure twice and cut once, and do their best Norm Abram impersonation to bring you a totally customized carpentry solution on a very small scale. And even if we're talking about a massive development of condos...while larger scale that one or two houses, that is still a very small scale. You are paying for labor and craftsmanship.

"Manufactured" = any cabinet not made as described in "custom". Thus, anything you buy at a big box store with a brand name on it is mass-manufactured. This is true when it comes to IKEA, Kraft Maid, and all the stuff you see at Home Depot and Lowe's. In a nutshell, it's all pretty much the same - a commodity trying to differentiate with finished, features, and marketing. That's not bad, that's just what it is.

It doesn't matter who you're talking about....Kraft Maid...IKEA...but even Boffi, Bulthaup, Poggenpohl, Poliform...and also think about office furniture like Steelcase, Herman-Miller, Knoll, Haworth, or home furniture like Sauder or any of those others you can find at Target or Sears or wherever else. Whomever is making a mass-manufactured cabinet, they all have the same basic construction. It may be surprising to hear, but a cheap bookcase from Target uses the same particleboard core and same basic construction as a stunning $25,000 wood office system from Kimball or Gunlocke or Knoll. Yes, those are ALL made with particleboard cores, laminated with some kind surface material, and put together in largely the same way. That doesn't mean it's 'cheap'.

Why do it this way? Because particleboard doesn't warp or twist, is easily machined, and is the perfect base for a high-end surface material. Even if you try to make a custom cabinet door for your bathroom, do NOT try to make it out of hardwood unless you're a master carpenter, and even then, that natural material will work against you. It will warp, twist, and break its glue joints, and will not stay flat, even if you think you've cured the wood. Just buy a high-grade veneer with 3M 486 MP adhesive on the back, trim the edges with a razor and a straightedge, and then do the same on the edges. You'll have a stunning wood door that will stay flat and true forever.

So even all this high-end furniture and cabinetry - they are ALL using particleboard (or MDF) for a core, and coatings of either melamine (foil), low- or high-pressure laminate (LPL or HPL), wood veneer, and sometimes paint and/or lacquer. They are ALL using cam-lock fasteners, even if it's not a KD cabinet, in addition to glue, dowels, and screws. They are all laminating the core with whatever layers that make up the outside finish on some sort of roller press system on a conveyor, then using the same German or Italian CNC machines to cut the cores and mill all the features. Then they get edge banding applied with an adhesive and trimmed, either by hand labor or by a $1M machine. There's a company in my town that sells machinery to all of these companies, including IKEA. It's all the same stuff.

The differentiation comes in the materials, innovative features, the general detailing of the overall product, and the ability to customize. That's what the high-end manufacturers are competing for - detailing, flexibility, and innovation. You can pay $10,000 for an IKEA kitchen, or $100,000 for the "same" kitchen from Poggenpohl. You may find that they both use Blum hardware (an Austrian company, not German), with customizations made for each. But companies like Bulthaup are starting to use their own proprietary hardware, to distance themselves from their competitors, because now everybody knows you can get their Blum hardware on IKEA cabinets, and nobody spending $150k on a kitchen wants to be seen with IKEA hardware anymore - even though it's perfectly awesome hardware otherwise.

One reason IKEA can sell so cheaply is that they have a very streamlined product portfolio carefully designed and targeted at a certain price point/demographic that does not seek to satisfy every single application nor every need for customization. They have 80% of what the market needs at the entry- to mid-level, and leave the rest to somebody else to provide improved levels of customization, detailing, and materials. If you want a custom-height cabinet in a custom-stain finish with a rare wood from Africa, you might get it from Valcucine, but not from IKEA. Want that special "matte white" finish on Corian that is a unique formulation and surface treatment that is the newest (and super cool!) thing from Boffi? You won't find that at IKEA. You can't even get book-matched veneer from IKEA, their wood cabinet fronts are just whatever grain you picked out in the warehouse that day, with not even an attempt at matching grain from one door to the next. My company sells veneered drawer fronts where the fronts are arranged from top to bottom with the cathedrals in the veneer going in succession from one drawer up to the next, because they whole set was made from the same sheet of veneer. Not so much at IKEA.

What you will find is a very smartly-designed portfolio with enough variety, customization, and surface materials to satisfy their target market. Then, they couple this with their global scale, allowing them to manufacture a limited portfolio on a massive scale, and realize large economies in the process. Their entire supply chain is very finely tuned and highly optimized to reduce material costs, inventory, freight, production time, and waste. Their manufacturing operations are full-on lean 6-sigma manufacturing, run by very smart operations people. Their engineers dial in a design, dial in the quality, dial in everything, then tool up to be able to repeat it a million+ times a day.

This is a completely different universe that the typical home builder, custom cabinet maker, or home owner is used to, much less even aware of. Quality? Durability? Reliability? Repeatability? Engineered for optimized assembly time, structural support, and thousands of other criteria? They designed not a cabinet, but a system of cabinets, which they will proceed to test exhaustively in a laboratory for everything from wear and UV and stain resistance of surface materials, to structural stability when mounted to varying wall constructions, to load and cycle testing of all moving parts and mechanism. They validate their designs against the specifications very thoroughly before moving into mass production. You would not believe what goes into accomplishing all of this. And after all that development, and after the time their cabinet system has been in the field, I'd say they have it dialed right in for that 80% of the market they target.

For those that say "that stuff is junk", well...sometimes products get mis-used, assembled incorrectly, or damaged by the installer or user after the manufacturer did their job. It is not their fault that your sink leaked or you drilled through the cabinet wall or you put the opening for the drain in the wrong place. I think it's fair to say they expect it to be installed correctly and carefully, and if a mistake happens on behalf of the installer, or a late change comes in, then they expect you to suck it up and swap it out with the $90 replacement cabinet frame, plus labor. No different if you were doing any other brand, or truly "custom" cabinets. The product is engineered to suit the end use exactly as designed. It has been exhaustively tested (many times to failure) and validated using math, science, statistics, computers, lasers, gamma-ray cyclotrons, and space-age manufacturing technology. It's safe to say they did their part.

You can't say something is "junk" just because it's made out of particleboard and cam-lock fasteners. The company I work for sells individual cabinets costing thousands of dollars that are made in almost the exact same way, and they are stunningly beautiful, durable, and built like a tank. Out of particleboard. It is anything but "junk". We're offering much higher quality materials & hardware, innovative features, and endless customization, but then again that's our market.

What does that all mean for the buyer? I think it means you can trust IKEA to put out exactly what they say their product is, and that they have a system to ensure you'll receive a product that meets specifications and quality targets reliably and repeatably. And that I'd be pretty skeptical of many "custom" contractors unless I saw a broad portfolio of their work, and could see how their installations hold up over time and use. Which is of course no substitute for testing it in a laboratory using statistics and math and science to assure compliance with standards and safety. By what do I know?
8 Likes   July 13, 2014 at 12:23AM
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designideas4me
Dphil66....Great review. I can tell you are very smart and most likely very rich just like some one else...oh yeah..the owner of IKEA.... he must be doing something right !
0 Likes   July 13, 2014 at 1:25AM
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monicar29
This is our fourth house and thus fourth re-do of a kitchen. We plan to use Ikea because of the affordability, creativity, and versatility of the design that ikea offers. My husband and I like clean lined minimalism in design and when we started our house DIY projects ikea was the only place that offered affordable modern designs.
We plan to stay the longest in this house, but in the end, we know that any room needs a face lift after 10 years. Paying more for longevity means you are paying for something that will need replacing before it's expiration date.
0 Likes   July 13, 2014 at 1:47AM
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midmodfan
dphil66: your comment should be repeated whenever IKEA kitchens are getting bashed here.

monicar29: IKEA is discontinuing their 20 y/o FAKTUM / AKURUM kitchens and starts a completely new system called METOD. The systems are not interchangeable. I'd wait until METOD is available where you live, as you may want to make some modifications in the future.
2 Likes   July 13, 2014 at 3:31AM
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Design Details
Thanks dphil66. It good to have Houzzers get the complete story on what cabinetry is all about. When this thread first started I got dinged for saying that I've never designed with IKEA because the line was not flexible enough. With few exceptions, I'd say that what you've stated is really what the cabinet business is all about. I happen to market to the other 20% of the market because I specialize in details. I don't hate IKEA but I don't think it's worthy of cult status either. That's why ice cream comes in so many flavors.
2 Likes   July 13, 2014 at 10:06AM
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mickisue
@dphil66: thank you! I have been frustrated by some of the uninformed opinions in this thread. Being uninformed is not a sin. But it's best to learn the facts before sharing one's opinion, IMO. And you clearly have the facts, offered in a dispassionate manner.

I know that I often refer to the comments of my dad. There is a reason for that: he lived and breathed design and build, and his admiration for any process that could improve the product while saving his customers money was unbounded.

The advent of Corian was, to him, wonderful: suddenly, it wasn't only his high-end remodeling clients who could afford something other than laminate countertops. Had he lived long enough to see the ascendancy of quartz, I think he'd have been equally pleased. Silestone was available in the first half of the 2000's, but not much used.

There were only a handful of IKEA stores in the US when he died. Women from my area (the Twin Cities in MN) went on caravan trips to Schaumberg, IL, to get what they could from that store, back then. He would, I think, love the idea that his customer could buy a product that was eminently affordable, and he could, with his design skill and the carpentry skills of his carpenters, create a kitchen for them that was exactly what was wanted, at a reasonable price point.
4 Likes   July 13, 2014 at 10:06AM
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designideas4me
WOW... super cool...lol... so glad you mentioned the word "metod". Glad I didnt do my kitchen yet. http://moregeous.wordpress.com/2014/02/15/farewell-faktum-hello-marvellous-metod-new-ikea-kitchen-range/
0 Likes   July 13, 2014 at 4:00PM
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dphil66
Thanks for your kind words, much less reading my whole post. I guess that's what happens when it's late at night and I'm bored... Interesting to know that they're issuing a new system.

I didn't mean to bash any of the other mass-market manufacturers like KraftMaid or whomever else, they're perfectly good. But it's important to know what market they're serving. IKEA is a welcome player in our domestic market because there are so few solutions available that can offer a more modern aesthetic. While other companies may have a solution, however limited, modern design is part of IKEA's DNA. You can always bring your own countertops and appliances to the game to make it even better, or else simply something unique and custom to your project.

And, there ARE many very good carpenters who can make a very satisfying custom solution. But I think it's important to understand the differences in the approach, i.e. manufacturing vs. craftsmanship. You can get very satisfying solutions either way, and usually a combination of both is in order, to achieve the level of customization you may require...and because not every kitchen wall is perfectly square, like the manufactured cabinets you may have purchased. There just always seems to be a need for some level of custom craftsmanship, especially in remodels.
2 Likes   July 14, 2014 at 7:52AM
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John Webb Construction and Design
We use a lot of IKEA products and love several of their door styles but often times more unique jobs and more specialty jobs require us to use a sub contractor for Custom IKEA doors. We use Dendra Doors in Portland Oregon. http://www.remodelcabinetdoors.com is their custom Ikea website. Their work has always been beautiful and prompt.

Dendra doors www.remodecalbinetdoors.com ships throughout the united states and all over the world. Custom walnut, solid wood doors and more. i would highly recommend them if you are considering Ikea kitchen cabinets with custom doors.
1 Like   September 19, 2014 at 11:47PM
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