Mullions on some glass doors and not on others?

Kristen HallockMarch 15, 2013

I am having 3 cabinets in my new kitchen with glass doors. 2 will be upper cabinets. One is a lower cabinet that will house cookbooks.

Is it OK to put traditional mullions on the lower cookbook cabinet? And then leave the top cabinets plain? My cabinets will be a shaker recessed panel with 3" styles.

I'm thinking the mullions will help to hide any messiness in the cookbook cabinet.

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Annie Deighnaugh

Mullions divide windows...muntins divide panes of glass...

I would be very concerned with glass front on a lower cabinet with or without muntins as they are more likely to be kicked or kneed accidentally.

Muntins or not, the level of obscuring is more in the glass than in the wood. Also keep in mind that where you want your shelves may not necessarily line up with where the muntins are....if they don't line up and the glass isn't obscuring, it could look odd.

In our bathroom we wanted to put the shelves where we wanted them so put in obscuring glass so you don't notice as much that the shelves don't line up. But in the picture, if you look closely, you can see that they don't.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 9:44AM
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localeater

I share Annie's concern regarding glass in a lower cabinet. I have two sons and my house is full of boys all the time. I would not but glass in a lower.
I also do not think I would like muntins in some doors and not others, it would look a bit mish-mashed to me.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 9:59AM
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Kristen Hallock

I've had glass doors in a lower cabinet before. It wasnt an issue. I didnt have kids then either though. But this island does not have seating. I feel like you'd have to run up to it and deliberately kick. Does that happen?

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 10:12AM
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marcolo

What age/style is your house and kitchen? Single pane or wood uppers and divided lights in lowers were pretty common in 1920s kitchens, especially where the lowers served as twin dividers between the kitchen proper and the breakfast area. I've known many, many, many people with glass lower bookcases and not a lethal laceration among them. You'll need tempered glass, though.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 10:12AM
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Kristen Hallock

So I am envisioning something like this. But my cabinet will be 48" wide and I am having natural maple 3" styles with a recessed door

My house was built in the 90's, it looks like this. The downstairs has an open floorplan.

And this is the current kitchen. The new island will not be diagonal. the bookcase will face into the seating area.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 10:17AM
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Kristen Hallock

Ok, trying this again.

Will it look wierd to have traditional mullions on a base cabinet bookcase like this

and then have mullions like this on a couple of upper cabinets??

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 2:49PM
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wi-sailorgirl

In my opinion, yes, however I do think you could get away with having muntins on the bottom and none on top.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 3:02PM
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marcolo

Those muntins are two completely different styles born of two completely different eras. Yes, they look bad together.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 3:22PM
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abfabamy

My thoughts...If you have 2 glass cabs on the top, why does DH want glass on the bottom. You lose so much ability to store whatever, whichever, however when you make that cabinet such a focal point and I found that bottom level storage is such a premium due to the lack of reaching, I wouldn't want to have to keep it for just "show". We included a 12" deep cab on the end of our island, and it is so handy to store things because it isn't deep and it's so convenient because everything is easy to find.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 3:31PM
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Kristen Hallock

Thanks, my initial thought was no. But Hubby thinks its ok.

So with a 3" style recessed square panel door, which would you choose? I am thinking traditional on the lower and nothing on top. Or I could do traditional on top too.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 6:24PM
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kaysd

"I feel like you'd have to run up to it and deliberately kick. Does that happen?"

Yes, that is a distinct possibility with young children. I am also picturing that green and yellow vehicle being driven straight into a lower cabinet. We have nearly full height glass panels in our pantry doors, but they are tempered glass since the glass is in reach of the kiddos.

Personally, I like my cookbooks behind solid wood doors so they don't have to be organized neatly for display.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 6:42PM
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marcolo

Yes, that is a distinct possibility with young children. I am also picturing that green and yellow vehicle being driven straight into a lower cabinet.

Sometimes it's best to let Darwin do his thing.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 10:06PM
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taggie

We have a mullioned cab at the end of our island and I really like it. Holds some little knickknacky things in our case. I don't have a good current pic of it, but below is one from our reno in progress so you can see the effect.

Bottom line, I don't really think it will hide your cookbooks much because you can really see into it quite clearly still. So if hiding them is the goal you should perhaps consider some sort of wavy glass. Oh, and I think that if you do mullions below then the mullions in your uppers should match for consistency.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 10:07PM
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island

II think the glass should be the same for the upper and lowers, and if you twisted my arm to make them different I would say the most ornate should be on top, however you'd really have to torture me to OK that! :>)
Regardless of style I think glass on the bottom to "hide" cookbooks is a bad idea since they wouldn't be hidden. They aren't attractive and do you really want to see them from the seating area? Too utilitarian. And the cabinet is 48" wide? You mean that's how wide the cookbook area would be, covered by approx two 24" wide doors? That's a lot of visible clutter. I'd rather put them behind solid doors and have the option to hide whatever I wanted in there.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 10:30PM
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suzanne_sl

Now you guys made me look up the mullion vs. muntin thing. The really confusing part is that these terms are sometimes used interchangeably by sites which should know better, like window and architectural places. They really are different terms, but a little confusing. Then I found this:


and this:

    Bookmark   March 16, 2013 at 12:49AM
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Kristen Hallock

Thanks everyone. That was an old picture and we don't have that green and yellow car anymore..so no chance of it being ridden into my cabinet. DH wanted the lower glass cabinet and DH is getting it.

I went with a totally different style door. It was the one we had in our last house that we both liked best..

And I would have liked to "hide" the cookbooks behind wood doors. But DH says no messiness and clutter and supposedly I promised to be neat and clean. So there shouldn't be a mess to hide.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2013 at 7:53AM
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Kristen Hallock

Thanks everyone. That was an old picture and we don't have that green and yellow car anymore..so no chance of it being ridden into my cabinet. DH wanted the lower glass cabinet and DH is getting it.

I went with a totally different style door. It was the one we had in our last house that we both liked best..

And I would have liked to "hide" the cookbooks behind wood doors. But DH says no messiness and clutter and supposedly I promised to be neat and clean. So there shouldn't be a mess to hide.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2013 at 7:55AM
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Annie Deighnaugh

I cringe at taggie's picture....doesn't need to be a 3 or 4 yr old child....my DH would be more than apt to knock that ladder leg right into that glass pane!

To me, it's just not wise to put glass under a counter where people's feet and knees are.

If you want to hide the books, then hide them behind solid doors. If you are going to keep them neat and don't mind displaying them, then leave the bookshelves open. But glass IMO is just an accident waiting to happen, esp when it's under a counter where it's not directly obvious to your eye. At the very least, if you want something like glass that is obscuring, then at least look into plexiglass...maybe get a frosted look....

My cookbooks are in open shelving on my island...we thought we'd never have anyone sitting there as there is no overhang on the ends, but when the party gets large enough, someone pulls a stool up and they sit. If there were glass there, yikes!

IAC, I agree with the others that the muntins should match within the space.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2013 at 9:35AM
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Annie Deighnaugh

mutton chops

leg of mutton

mutton sleeve

    Bookmark   March 16, 2013 at 9:53AM
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suzanne_sl

But DH says no messiness and clutter and supposedly I promised to be neat and clean.

At least some degree of messiness comes from not having places to put things without doing a 3-D jigsaw puzzle every time you want to take out/put away stuff. To a certain extent designing your new kitchen so that things have an accessible place to go is a big help. The other thing is paring down your belongings - you don't really need a half dozen 2 qt saucepans.

-says the person who has a quilt project all over the peninsula that's been there for 3 weeks.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2013 at 12:24PM
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island

"But DH says no messiness and clutter and supposedly I promised to be neat and clean."

Wow.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2013 at 2:36PM
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may_flowers

Do cookbooks really get that messy on a bookshelf? You put them in, you take them out...

    Bookmark   March 16, 2013 at 5:38PM
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Kristen Hallock

Never mind!

    Bookmark   March 16, 2013 at 9:26PM
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taggie

Annie, no one sits at the glass cabinet door!! The dog does go Barreling through the passageway though, and I do mean Barreling with a capital B, but I guess we just like to live on the wild side, lol. We also have a curio cabinet at the end of the aisle. He hasn't crashed into that yet either. (i hope i didn't just jinx myself!!!)

Pic attached ... you should probably close your eyes because if a cab door is cringe worthy then a curio cabinet might be in heart attack inducement territory. :-)

    Bookmark   March 16, 2013 at 9:31PM
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Kristen Hallock

I won't have anyone sitting at my island either. No stools to worry about.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2013 at 2:32PM
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