Shaker Cabinet Style

olivertwistkitchenJanuary 4, 2013

I'm trying to decide between 2 styles of Shaker Cabinets.
I think I like the look of the really wide rails (I think that's what they're called) like the one in the picture here. But maybe that's too wide and I should stick with a more standard shaker style like the one in my next post? One concern with the extra wide one is that I don't think I can get drawers in the same style, I think they will just be a slab front. And then I think that although I will have standard uppers, all the lowers are different, some are big drawers, some are narrow skinny tray cabinets, some are pull-outs - so will that style work with that?

Color will not be like the one pictured here. I'm thinking of a maple in a honey or graham cracker color, more like the picture in my 2nd post below.

Does anyone have a picture of a kitchen with shaker cabinets like this?

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Oliver -
If the "rails" are 2 wide (and someone will correct us with the correct lingo) - you will have difficulty putting hardware on the drawer without bumping knuckles.
This is why the top drawer is frequently just flat.
Here are our drawers for comparison. - They are cherry but a similar color to what you are describing - I think

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 9:38AM
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Here's the other style: still "wide" but not as wide.
As you can see, this one does allow be to keep the shaker style on the drawers, but the first cabinet style did not.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 9:39AM
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When I was picking my cabinet doors I was considering the wide rail -vs- narrow also. I ended up choosing one that has a slightly wider stile and rail than the narrow, but not as wide as the wide one :) with a beaded inside profile detail.

I think some refer to it as modified shaker but I may be mistaken on the terminology.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 12:08PM
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Sophie Wheeler

The Option 2 on the drawer will make installing hardware difficult. Slab drawers are the preferred style with shaker if you are trying to do a true shaker kitchen. It's all about simplicity.

If you want modified shaker, you can do the wide stiles and rails, but skip that for the narrow drawers and just do slab drawer fronts on the top drawers. Wide stiles and rails don't comfortably leave enough room for hardware on small drawers.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 12:18PM
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I have shaker with 2" rails and slab drawers. The handles are all on the rails toward the top of the lower drawers and on the rails on the top of the sink doors and the dishwasher panel. The hardware on the drawers is on the top third. This is one option of hardware placement and it looked "right" to me and worked well with slab drawers.

You will have to dust and wipe down every rail, they accumulate grunge in the kitchen.

The choice is a personal one in the end.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 12:20PM
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I have shaker doors (standard, narrow rails/stiles) and slab drawers. All slab is too contemporary a look for me, but I'm very happy with the mix with shaker. And yes, the edges collect dust. That's why I have an every 4 months "clean cabs" note on my calendar, before it gets grungy and is an easy once-over with barely soapy water and a microfiber cloth.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 12:36PM
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Thanks for the helpful insights. I will measure the rails and see if they are 2inches or not.

Any chance you guys (besides a2gemini) can post some photos?

"Clean cabs" on calendar? That's hysterical. That is so not happening for me! Why would it get any dustier than anything else that is anything but plain slab?

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 1:04PM
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Oliver - I really like your second set of pictures.

I purposely had ours at an angle to collect less dust - but then we added the trim to collect more dust. LOL!
Ours are a little over 2.5 inches.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 1:17PM
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Olivertwist, always glad to provide a little comic relief. :)

It doesn't get any dustier than anything else, but it's not a surface that routinely gets wiped down. You never notice it until it becomes ewwww, how did that happen? And harder to clean. My cabs are white, so there isn't any way for dirt to hide. So I try to be proactive and do something on a routine basis before it becomes gross and onerous. I also get my teeth cleaned three times a year instead of two, just to stay ahead of the curve.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 1:33PM
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Sophie Wheeler

Horizontal surfaces collect more dust than vertical ones. The horizontal lips of shaker doors will collect a bunch more dust than the vertical face of the doors and will need cleaning more often because of that. You'll need an artist's brush or other soft brush to periodically get down into the teensy groove that exists between a free floating center panel and the fixed stiles and rails. Don't use any type of oil or "furniture polish". All any modern finish needs is periodic dry dusting and the occasional damp cloth. For food spills, a bit of dish detergent with a damp cloth should be all you need.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 1:33PM
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Don't laugh at me, but I never noticed until just now when I went to measure that my stiles and rails are not equal! Wow.

Anyway, rails across the top are 1.75" and stiles are 2.25". I wanted 5-pieces drawers throughout as the mix of 5-piece and slab seemed too mix/match for me. I like the continuity of the same drawer style. I didn't know at the time that slabs for top drawers was traditional.

As you can see, my pulls are mounted on the drawer panels, and I have no difficulty reaching and opening the shallow drawers on the top or on the 4-drawer stacks. I did, however, make sure my pulls had sufficient projection to allow for ease of use. A year later, I'm still very happy with all my choices.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 1:39PM
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Medallion cabinets in brandywine stain on maple and Divinty white on Hood and Island - Park place door style

The top drawer is slab and the lower drawers are the five piece fronts.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 5:02PM
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Olivertwist-I don't know what the dimensions are on ours as I'm out of town. We had planned to go with a wider stile and rail, until we saw it in another kitchen that our architect had done. DH really disliked that look, so we went with the narrower style. He was right and for us I'm glad we changed our order:

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 5:19PM
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Breezygirl and leela4, I love the scale of the drawers and door fronts. I, too, prefer the five piece construction for all of the drawers and doors. I have priced my kitchen with inset doors, concealed hinges, but as I study more photos I find that the full overlay door presents a simpler look. There are many fewer "lines" involved and I may revise my plan accordingly. I think I will include a small bead on the insides of the rails to "soften" the 90 degree angles and maybe improve the maintenance issues? Breezygirl, what are those faucets you have chosen? Really like those, are you happy with their performance?

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 5:42PM
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Has anyone used a bevel detail on the inside of the rails? Photos?

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 5:44PM
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Wow, these are so helpful. I measured the two samples. The smaller one is about 3 inches. The WIDER one is 4 inches! Guess no one has done 4invh wide rails?

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 8:35PM
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Lorenza- ours are beveled on the inside to decrease dust. I used the word angled but beveled would be more accurate.
Breezy- I went back and measured ours and the rails and stiles are the same on ours.

Oliver- you can put your choices into perspective based on the pictures.
Badgergal mounted her hardware on the rail/stile.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 9:09PM
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rtwilliams: How did you get your Westie to pose for a picture?!? When mine are in the kitchen, they're busy sniffing around in hopes of finding food! :)

I hadn't seen your kitchen before, but it's beautiful - and the dark wood is perfect backdrop for that lovely white fur.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 10:11PM
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My favorite has a combination of slab drawer fronts and the wide stiles on the larger doors/drawers. I am trying to mesh all my lowers (all drawers) with the large stiles. The bottom stile is 4 inches and the top and sides are 3 inches. The inside edges of the stiles have a shaped trim around it. Where the drawers are too narrow for the stiles, I am having slab fronts. (Cabinet maker will start construction by the end of the month! Yipee! I have waited a long long time!) It looks very "farm house" to me. Here is a photo that shows this look.

Traditional Kitchen design by Boston Kitchen And Bath Dalia Kitchen Design

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 11:38PM
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I neglected to say that I like the "mix" of slab drawers and stiled drawers because IMHO it adds visual interest and breaks up the monotony of everything being the same. It is also nice to add some open shelves or cubbies to give interest as long as doing so maintains the functionality of the kitchen. I do think the mix gives more of a period look whereas all the drawers lining up and being exactly the same is more of a contemporary look to me. (Just my opinion.) I guess it really depends on the style of your house and what appeals to you. All the photos above are very attractive.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 11:53PM
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We have the shaker doors and slab drawers set-up, and are very happy with it.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 12:44AM
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Lorenza--my faucets are Hansgrohe Talis S high arc in chrome. They were the very first thing I fell in love with when beginning our kitchen planning. I saw them in a kitchen/bath mag, and my decision was made right there. Done. I still love the shape and style of them over a year later. They've been trouble free and performed well.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 1:18AM
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3.5" rails/stiles on mine, plus a bevel on both outside and inside edge of bevel, making a slightly more contemporary shaker look. Had to go with slab front on smaller drawers for obvious reasons. Not your colour, but these are Kitchencraft Berkeley:

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 10:11AM
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You know, don't you, that once you start adding bevels and beads you're no longer talking Shaker, right? Any manufacturer you talk to will have a completely different name for those style doors. I'd suggest you go in with a picture of what you're wanting, because if you start talking "Shaker with bead" their eyeballs are going to bounce together in their heads and you'll waste a lot of time with them guessing what you're talking about. BTDT

I have 3" rails and stiles on my MB. It was explained to me that when the rails and stiles match, they're Mission. I think matching rails and stiles look nice on bigger doors.

I noticed on the 9" spice type pull-out thing I put in between my vanities that, because it's narrow, the verticals are 2.5". (So is it Shaker again?)

On smaller doors in my MBR, I have actual Shaker. 2.5"/2.25". Since I'm actually making a Tansu, some of the door fronts become "cottage" with beaded panels. (I just got my last cabinets and have to put the doors on. It's looking fabulous. After 7 years of constructing and buying pieces, it SHOULD!)

Darn it, Breezy! Are those the RH handles again? I can't recall. I'm in love with that style.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 12:20PM
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Yes, Christine. Those are *still* the RH Aubrey pulls in polished nickel. ;)

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 12:34PM
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Still, huh? Ok. Smarty.
I'm probably going to bite the bullet and get them, since I can't find those Pottery Barn ones that are more thin/delicate. Plus, someone told me they were crappy.

Since I plan them in my MB, polished nickle is the ticket, too. Got any extras lying around!? ROTFL. Sometimes I think I'm so funny.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 2:56PM
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We're *both* so funny, Christine. ;) I kid ya!

I had dozens of extras hanging out after install as I ordered way too many of each size so I could experiment with different sizes on different cabs, but sent most back. I kept an 8" and a 6" on advice of my cab maker in case I had any issue with the ones in the cabs. I now wish I would have kept two of each size.

I do love those PB pulls you were lusting after. You DON'T want crappy quality though. I love, love my RH Aubreys! I don't think there's a current RH sale, but if you can wait I'm sure they'll go on sale for 20% off soon on either a store-wide F&F sale or a specific hardware sale. The puppies aren't cheap at full price.

Sorry for the hijack, OP!

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 3:10PM
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I like Breezy's handles too! What do they run in cost? Could one mix those with bin pulls, say on the top or smaller drawers?

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 3:35PM
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Olivertwist -

I went with 3 inch rails - I too liked wider rails, but I have a skinny 9 inch pull-out pantry next to the fridge that wouldn't have worked with wider rails and I wan't a consistent look. On all of the drawers I went with slabs for ease of use with the pulls from Horton Brass that I wanted. The slab drawers are also super easy to clean - which is helpful with my pre-schooler "helping" me in the kitchen and dripping all over the place. I remember there being a bunch of discussions on GW about slab vs rail which were helpful - packed with pics.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 3:50PM
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Quiltgirl--The polished nickel Aubreys run:


I bought mine during a Restoration Hardware Friends and Family sale a 20% discount. Those sales run twice a year, and there are also hardware specific sales that will also give you the 20% discount. No way was I paying full price! I have lots and lots and lots of drawers so the cost adds up quickly.

Here is a link that might be useful: RH Aubrey's web page

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 4:08PM
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Thanks Breezy! I will check that out. The Restoration Hardware by us is closing at end of month, but no hardware that I could use.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 10:18PM
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I too have the beveled edge for ease of cleaning. I never see dust on them, even with my new glasses. ;)

After much debate about slab vs 5-piece drawers, we decided to do traditional Shaker where anything over 8" gets a 5-piece drawer. It was a good choice because the slab drawers show off the grain of the natural cherry better than the 5-piece.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2013 at 10:13AM
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Thank you everyone for sharing why you went with what width of styles and rails for your shaker look drawers. May-Flowers, I love your natural cherry grain showing on your drawers!

    Bookmark   August 11, 2013 at 3:32PM
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I've sort of been obsessed with this stile/rail width thing.
My take on it is that bigger is better within reason.
I also think that the thinner you go, the more dated the look will become over time.
I like 3". But, I'm contemplating building with 3 1/2 as that is a standard available dimension (1x4) (no need to rip to 3").
For drawer fronts, you just make the rail thinner.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2013 at 8:47PM
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I love this thread and had to revisit it so I can be educated again as I look at cabinets with the shaker look or modified shaker look. It is almost what I have now but I have builder grade oak partial overlay recessed door with the stiles and rails.

I want either full overlay frameless cabinets or inset cabinets.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 1:07AM
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@breezy - "Anyway, rails across the top are 1.75" and stiles are 2.25"."

Does this also apply to the larger/deeper drawers that could accomodate a thicker rail (top & bottom) ... or just on your smaller drawers?

And does it also apply to the doors?

Example: On a 6"h x 15.5"w drawer front, do I make the stiles and rails the same size (2.5") - which would leave little room for the hardware, or reduce the size of the rails?

    Bookmark   November 8, 2013 at 12:16AM
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I would like to see more photos of paneled cabs with different styles of trim added (beveled, bead, others). Whatever you call them, I would like to see them!

One of the last houses I toured had a beveled edge added, but it was a long bevel protruding if you can picture that. There's so many options to choose from. My cabinet maker offeres beveled, bead, and ogee edge as standard offerings (and of course flat panel with no trim).

    Bookmark   November 8, 2013 at 10:41AM
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I would also like to see Beaded Inset, and other shaker look drawers that are full overlay.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2013 at 12:53PM
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I have the wide rails! I love them--to me they make the shaker look even more interesting. I love the slab drawers as well.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2013 at 3:32PM
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