plain and fancy cabinetry

rsslpMarch 13, 2009

Please post your pictures and give any advice regarding plain and fancy cabinetry.

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Several years ago, I used Plain and Fancy for a big bathroom reonovation. They were beautiful, and in a creamy white. I started having problems with the paint cracking and chipping. They never stood behind the problem and I have never been able to get them to fix it. Not sure how other companies would have handled this, but I am getting ready to start a kitchen renovation where the cabinets are costing close to $80,000 and P and F were not even considered. Make sure you understand thier policies

    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 6:21PM
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I looked at P & F cabinetry for our kitchen, but just couldn't get the look that I wanted with them and the KD that sells them here, I didn't mesh with. I had done my research (thanks GW) and had my "notebook" (measurements, layout, inspiration photos, etc) in hand when I went to meet with her and I just never felt as though she "got it". Came in at the top of my budget and I just wasn't comfortable with the service so we went to a local cabinetmaker -- love my cabinets! Got EXACTLY the style and finish that I designed and could make them any size I wanted. All for significantly less than P & F quoted us.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 8:06PM
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Well, I have Plain and Fancy cabinets and I love them! They are very well constructed and beautiful. My experience with the company, thus far, has been excellent. I've had only one problem during the course of remodel and it was brought to my attention by Plain and Fancy themselves. Apparently, they made a mistake in my order and sent me standard drawers instead of those which had been upgraded with the Blum soft close glides I had ordered. P&F contacted the local vendor/KD and offered profuse apologies for their mistake. They expedited delivery of the replacement drawers and paid my GC's change order charges for swapping out all the drawer fronts. I was impressed with their honesty and customer service because, to tell the truth, at that point none of us on this end were even aware a mistake had been made in the first place!

It is my understanding that there is always some risk with nearly all painted cabinetry -- not just that of P&F -- that over time, it may crack and chip. I would imagine that in a high humidity environment such as a bathroom, painted cabinetry will crack even faster than in other rooms of the house. I do know that, the local vendor was very up front with me in explaining this potential downside of painted cabinetry and I've seen that same discussion on this forum countless times. And, although Juliemark says that her issue with P&F and cracking paint occurred "several years ago," I can tell you that when you contract for painted P$F cabinetry today you must also sign a waiver which essentially states you are aware that the paint may eventually crack, especially around inset door and drawer edges. BTW, I had no problem signing that waiver since this forum had already made me aware of this potential issue with painted cabinetry.

Given that my cabinetry has been installed for only a short time in my still incomplete kitchen, I cannot speak of my experience with P&F cabinetry on a long term basis. I will repeat, however, that at this point, I am very pleased both with the cabinetry and with the dealings I've had with the company itself. Finally, up until today, I had never before seen a negative review of this product.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 9:16PM
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juliemark, do you have any pictures of the cracks in your paint? I have painted cabinets, and it seems obvious that if I bang something against the surface it could chip and require retouching. But I'd be really disappointed if the paint actually began to crack! Was your damage caused by excess water by any chance?

I wasn't asked to sign a waiver about cracking paint, and I would have been dismayed if I'd been asked to. On the contrary, I had a conversation with one of the owners of Crown Point in which she proudly pointed out how well their cabinet finishes hold up over time.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 9:36PM
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As far as cracking paint, one thing I have been told is to make sure you have a house humidifier if you live in an area with 4 seasons. All wood swells and contracts, but in painted cabinets it's much more noticable than in stained cabinets.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 9:57PM
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Maybe I'm confusing references to cracking paint with seams separating. I can definitely see where that would be more noticeable with painted cabinets.

For people shopping for painted cabinets, one thing to ask is whether the paint and finish is applied before or after assembly of the doors and drawers. If they are assembled before painting, when the seam separation occurs you may see unfinished wood, making the seams even more obvious.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 10:12PM
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We've had our Plain & Fancy cabinets for over a year now, and I love them. We have a cream painted finish, and there are no cracks or chips. They've stood up to our three young kids, who are not easy on furniture. The cabinets are very well constructed. I'd definitely recommend them.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 10:48PM
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Erikanh, I may be similarly confused! In order to arrest any confusion that I may have introduced in my post, here's the exact language I signed off in my contract with P&F that is relevant to this discussion:

"PLAIN & FANCY Custom Cabinetry likes satisfied customers. Therefore, it is for this reason that we accentuate the need for our customer to completely understand the enamel finish characteristics. The PLAIN & FANCY factory, unlike most homes, is maintained with a humidification system. Therefore, a situation exists where-by [sic]the cabinetry in your home can dry out or pick up moisture. In either event, the shrinkage or expansion of the joints can cause the enamel finish to fracture at the joints. This condition is not in any way considered defective workmanship or material. It will not affect the stability of your cabinetry, doors, or finish in general. These specific conditions are being explained carefully, so it is clearly understood, neither the PLAIN & FANCY manufacturer or the PLAIN & FANCY authorized dealer, can be held responsible for any of the above mentioned natural conditions which may appear in your cabinetry."

I should add that, as an attorney (retired from practice), I had no problem signing this waiver. This waiver only speaks to P&F being held harmless if the paint fractures under natural conditions, i.e. conditions of excessive dryness or humidity in my home. In no way, however, does it let P&F off the hook for defective workmanship, e.g. a badly mixed batch of paint or improperly applied paint, etc.


    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 10:53PM
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Marthavila, makes total sense to me now after reading that. I guess the correct term is joint, not seam.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 10:57PM
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marthavilla would you be able to post pictures of your P&F cabinetry? i would love to see it. also, did you price any other custom cabinetry (i.e. woodmode, plato) and if so how did P&F compare price wise? thanks so much for the feedback everyone!

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 10:49AM
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I agree with Martha. P&F cabinets are great, especially for their price range. And it is rare to see any negative reviews.

I have been selling P&F for almost 10 years now and I have to say, it's the one cabinet line that I can count on to deliver consistent quality! I never worry that the cabinets will come in damaged or have finish flaws. In fact, in 10 years, I've never had to call for a replacement or warranty issue...and that is remarkable.

As to their pricing? I quoted a very small kitchen about 5 years ago. The homeowner also quoted Woodmode apples-for-apples. My P&F price was $12,000. Woodmode was $18,000.

I will try to find some P&F pics to post later. But I have a client due in my showroom, any minute.


    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 11:10AM
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We just finished our kitchen, all P & F, my contractor was very rough on them and caused alot of damage. Apparently, they have a team of very specialized craftsmen that can rectify any issue. We had one bank of cabinets that were not properly lined up to anoter bank. The door size was off by 1/4 inch, which is a very minor detail. They went to great pain to make it right. They also fixed all the damage my contractor did to my cabinets. I have been super impressed with how important my opinion of the company is to them. The quality of the cabinets are very high, uncharacteristically high when you compare to other cabinets in the same price range.
In regards to the finish, I chose P&F because my designer (not Kitchen designer, but the designer of the rest of the house), has had hers for 5 years, with 6 kids in her house, they have held up amazingly well.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 11:47AM
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We recently expanded and renovated the kitchen with P&F cabinetry. It's stunning. Really beautiful. For a small fee you can develop a custom color--paint/glaze, and they retain it in their systems to match pieces to in the future.

Our KD was exceptional. The details she put into the integrated raised end panels, the paneled bar with pilasters and corbels, etc is just stunning. We also have a custom wood hood.

In terms of finish--ours seems hard as nails, smooth as silk. The doors are solid.

In terms of service---we had a situation where the end panels on the cabs that flank the wood hood were not proportioned correctly. P&F immediately manufactured and sent replacements, and the color exactly matched the other cabs. Since we have a custom color & glaze, I was impressed.

The best way to determine price/value is to price your layout with a few different lines of cabs you are considering. I have a few areas in my kitchen that required custom sizes to get exactly what I wanted, so going with other lines I often had to compromise on the design. In the end we paid more for the P&F than some other lines we priced, but we also got a far superior quality and design for the incremental cost.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 12:58PM
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I have yellow painted P&F cabinets which were installed nearly 5 years ago. Pics of those have been posted numerous times here.

The cabinets have been great and I definitely would go with them again. I haven't noticed any cracking though I was told in advance that painted cabinets would eventually show seam joints, as has been stated upthread. So far, they have not.

I agree 100% with Kompy on delivery and reliability. They were great about doing a custom plate rack for me and later, to fix something that was improperly ordered, to send matched painted boards from which we were able to construct open shelving.

I'm headed into a possible reno of our apartment kitchen and plan to get a P&F quote (and hope Marthavila might be willing to share the name of her dealer with me!)

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 2:18PM
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Rsslp , even though I've broken this rule a few times, I'm trying hard to wait until my kitchen is done before posting photos to the Kitchen Forum. That said, I wouldn't mind sharing some photos of my cabs with you offline. I see you haven't yet set up an email account with GW. So, why don't you email me offline (you will find a link to email me on my "Member Page") and I will send you some jpegs.

Rococgurl Now, you know -- anything for you girlfriend! My vendor was Park Slope Kitchen Gallery in Brooklyn. The KD who works with the P&F line there is Glenn. I'll send you an email tomorrow (Sunday) with more details.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 10:51PM
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Regarding quality, be sure to check out the thickness and dimensions of the sides and backs etc. When I was looking for a painted cabinet for my vanity, I considered P&F. I don't remember exactly what my thought process was and why I did not go with them, but I do recall that closely studying the specs of all the cabinets I was considering, convinced me that Omega Cabinets seemed to beat out everyone as the top quality product. Maybe P&F's high price tag was involved in the decision too. Not sure. But I have now done two bathrooms in Omega (one custom and one the semi-custom Dynasty line). Very pleased.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 11:28PM
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Just stumbled across this whilst musing about my own ghastly Plain & Fancy experience. Concur 100% with "These are not high-end cabinets" although they come at a very high price.

Here's a thread I started at the height (or was it the nadir?) of my P&F experience. First-timers might be especially interested in its posts about, and by, kitchen designers.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2013 at 10:16AM
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Oh, I was just going to post my cabinet photos as an example of plain cabinetry and was curious what fancy cabinetry looks like. Never mind then.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2013 at 11:11AM
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I can't imagine paying 80k or even 65k for assembly line cabinets! Really, at that price point, you should be getting truly custom made, top of the line cabinets.
I had my cabinets made 6 years ago- each to the exact size I needed, full inset, soft close drawers and most importantly (for our historic home), each section of the kitchen made all in one piece rather than joined individual cabinets. 3/4 inch Plywood used on backs only for added stability. After 6 years they are still in perfect condition.
We paid about $400 per running foot. Because we were reusing some of the original 1882 cabinetry and really didn't want a kitchen dominated by cabinets, our total cabinet bill was less than 10k.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2013 at 11:57AM
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Glad to hear of a good resolution.

Wondering what cabinet brand finally met your expectations?

    Bookmark   October 7, 2013 at 5:57PM
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