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5 things to consider when selecting finishes for your new kitchen design!

Updated: Jan 23

Showing kitchen door and bench top samples of a kitchen designer, in the process of kitchen design.
Kitchen design

New kitchen design is an important decision. It is a very exciting time, because you want to make a change to bring a new, fresh look into your house. But sometimes it could be overwhelming as you don't know where to start?

“Do you have so many ideas for your new cabinetry? Not too sure where to start? Keep reading :)”

It's always good to start asking yourself these 5 important questions and find out what you like?

1-What type of doors do i like?

Laminate (Melamine) doors

Laminate doors have a wide range of variety in colours and patterns, they are very durable and the most affordable. But they cannot be profiled.

Vinyl wrapped doors (Thermoformed)

Vinyl wrapped doors can have routing which makes them look like timber doors. Vinyl comes in a good variety of colours, patterns and textures and get wrapped around a substrate such as moisture-resistant MDF boards. They can easily be scratched and need to be protected from heat.

Vinyl wrapped doors are mid-range in terms of cost.

2-Pack polyurethane (Painted) doors

Painted doors are available in a very wide colour range. They are very popular for their gloss finish. They can easily chipped or scratched. Painted doors are the most expensive range.

Timber doors

Timber door's colours and patterns variation will occur and should be accepted as timber is a natural material.

2-Should i go matte or glossy?


Gloss cabinets doors specially high gloss doors make kitchens look brighter and larger. Because of their shiny surface they reflect lights. Gloss finish is a great choice for contemporary kitchen and it is recommended for small kitchens as they make the space looks larger. At the same time you have to bear in mind that they reflect lights from all available colours in the room, therefore if you have a very colourful room you will get many colours reflection.


Scratches, Spills and finger marks are very noticeable on gloss doors.


Matte cabinets doors don't reflect lights and they are a great choice for traditional and country-style kitchens. Scratches, spills and finger marks on matte doors are not as much as noticeable as gloss doors. Matte finish are becoming very popular among customers, also according to Anne Ellard; matte finish cabinet fronts in Europe are now more popular than gloss. (A. Ellard, How to choose the right finish for new kitchen cabinets, Houzz, Australia contributor)

3-what colour should i choose?

It doesn't matter what material you choose, whether is laminate, vinyl or 2-pack doors, they all come in variety of colours, patterns and textures. As a general rule brighter colours make the space look larger and the darker colours make the space look smaller.

Helpful Tip

Anything rather than solid colours (texture and pattern) might require more material usage due to the limitation in cutting of pieces as pattern/texture direction has to be considered in overall design of cabinetry.

4-what type of benchtop should i choose?

Engineered stone

Engineered stone is made of quartz or granite granules, marble dust or glass chips mixed with a resin or polyester base.  Its appearance and durability have made it a popular choice.


Engineered stone is very solid and durable. It comes in wide variety of colours and patterns and is very similar to natural stone.

Depends on the product, slabs come in different length which might have joints for very long cabinetry projects.


Laminated benchtops are the most affordable range. They have great range of colours and patterns. Laminated benchtop needs to be protected from heat and it is difficult to repair the scratched or chipped surface. If you wish to have undermount sink laminated benchtop can't help you with it.


Timber benchtop is great if you are a big fan of rustic look and it is an environmentally friendly product because it is natural. Timber benchtop has a good variety of colours and patterns. It needs to be resealed occasionally and we recommend this to be done every 12 months.

Helpful Tip

Timber benchtops can only be used for outdoor kitchens if the material is hardwood and rated for outdoor use.


Concrete benchtop is an option for outdoor kitchens and polished concrete benchtop is recommended for indoor kitchens. Concrete benchtops bring the industrial feel into your house. They are very flexible when it comes to the width, length and shape as typically a formwork mould is built first for the custom built concrete top, and it will come out with the precise shape of the mould.

5-what other items should i consider?

Cabinet Splashbacks

There are so many options for kitchen splashbacks;


Tiled splashback is the most common material and it has very wide range in terms of: shape, colour, pattern and price.

Toughened glass

Glass splashbacks need to be toughened (safety glass) to withstand the heat from cooktop. They come in large variety of colours.

Mirrored glass

Mirrored glass splashbacks are great to make the room look larger due to the light reflection. They are not normal clear glass and typically are tinted.


Acrylic splashback is more affordable than glass splashback. It is light, shiny, flexible and durable. It can be installed over the existing tiled wall. Acrylic splashback withstand less temperature than glass splashback.


Stone splashback are great to create an unique and stunning look for your kitchen, bathroom or laundry. You can match it with the stone benchtop you like.

Cabinet Kickboards

Kickboard or toe kick is a small part, at the bottom of base cabinets which has been neglected from the most cabinetry designs. Below are some design options to choose from:

  • Stainless steel kickboard (most popular)

  • Painted black kickboard

  • Match with cabinet doors colour

  • Match with splashback colour

Cabinet Handles

Handles are usually the final touch to the cabinetry, key points to consider when choosing handles:


Choose a style which goes well with your cabinetry: is your cabinetry traditional, contemporary or transitional? choose something to have the same feel as the rest.


Are you more into curved or straight lines? You can choose square or curved handles.


There are numerous finishes to complement other finishes of cabinetry like: brushed nickel, chrome, stainless steel, brass, satin chrome, satin nickel etc. The best way to to choose is: do you want matte or shiny finish?


Again there are so many options to suit your need and preferences: silver, black, bronze, gold, rose gold. etc.

122 views1 comment



Sara Namdarian
Sara Namdarian

Thank you for the helpful information, I believe you are doing a great job. As an interior designer, I can see proficiency, aesthetic and functionality in your design. I can see a transformation of space has happened with your thoughtful design and workmanship.

I can feel subtlety + delicacy + firmness in your style, which is hard to achieve but when one attains and applies in justly like yours, it brings tremendous energy to a SPACE. WELL DONE!

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Wood & Form offers a range of professional, high quality cabinetry services. We're a family owned business, and we come to work everyday because we love what we do. We focus equally on the aeshthetic and functional aspects of our products. A small team comprised of different values and skills, we share more than 35 years of experience. We have a strong reputation of deliverying amazing products for our happy customers.

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