Creating a Luxury Kitchen with Cabinetry Under $30,000

Text by Lynda Simonton

When it comes to designing and building luxury kitchens, Pierre Matta and his team at Newton Kitchen & Designs set the standard in the Boston market, so it may come as a surprise that the showroom also designs kitchen cabinetry at budget-friendly price points. Matta shares how to make the most of your kitchen design by careful cabinetry selection and strategic design decisions that result in a beautiful kitchen while providing the most value for your renovation dollar.

The kitchens showcased here all represent cabinetry with a price tag of less than $30,000.

Start with the Cabinet Box
When it comes to kitchen cabinetry, what you can’t see is just as important as what you can. Box construction, a key component of design and material selection, provides a true opportunity for saving. 3/4″ maple plywood boxes are often the default for kitchens, but melamine is a more affordable option. In fact, many architects and designers actually prefer melamine because it is easy to clean, and it creates a very stable construction. The key here is to make sure the melamine is three-quarter-inch thick to maintain quality. “Since Newton Kitchen & Design builds its own cabinetry, it has the flexibility to change the components to come in on budget without sacrificing the construction quality,” says Matta.

Think Inside the Box
When the kitchen design process begins, the homeowners often have a very long wish list. This is your dream kitchen after all! Matta says that utensil drawers, lazy Susans, roll-out drawers, and other fancy accoutrements are hard to resist, but in the end, they really drive up the price of the kitchen. If you can be disciplined and skip these luxuries, you will find that you can keep the final price tag low without sacrificing the overall look. Pass on the custom inserts, and add organizational accessories later when your budget allows.

Matta also sticks to standard-sized boxes when attempting to keep the price of the kitchen down. Avoiding custom sizes is always a budget-friendly approach to the design.

Incorporating metal drawers instead of solid wood ones also helps save money. Once again, this provides a savings that doesn’t affect the cabinet exterior, and some homeowners favor the metal drawers for their contemporary look.

Pass on the Luxury Finishes
Newton Kitchens & Design is well known for its luxurious finishes such as zinc- or leather-wrapped cabinets, exotic-wood veneers, and bespoke details like hammered-nail heads. When you have a larger budget, these finishes are an incredible way to add the “wow factor” to your kitchen and create a space that showcases your unique style. “However, when the budget is more restrained, pass on the extraordinary and opt for a more classic finish such as painted cabinets or a stained wood.

Brainstorm ways you can get your desired look for less. For example, if you’re coveting a super-glossy cabinet, Matta will direct you to lacquer versus a polyester high-gloss finish to keep costs down and achieve a similar aesthetic. Both finishes are durable, but the lacquer finish is a less labor-intensive process, therefore reducing your cost.

When it Comes to Cabinet Pricing, it’s a Numbers Game
It is simple math when it comes to tallying up the cost of your kitchen cabinetry. More costs more, so a smaller footprint will certainly cost less than a larger one. Dreaming of a twelve-foot island? Perhaps you have to go with an eight-foot one instead to keep the cabinetry budget in check.

The elimination of upper cabinets for aesthetic reasons has been a trend in kitchen design for a while now. Happily, this also happens to be a budget-friendly option. Ditching the upper cabinets allows for more creativity with tile and the opportunity for additional windows to bring in more light. It also results in an overall design that feels fresh and airy.

In the End, it’s all About Good Design
We asked Matta how he makes less expensive cabinets look more luxurious. “I focus on the lines of the cabinetry. Simple lines will create a more upscale look. I also swap drawers for doors since these are less expensive and result in a sleek design. Selecting cabinets with big panels appear less busy to the eye and are less expensive without reducing storage space.

“A strategic use of drawers is important. I will spec a large pantry with less expensive shelving on the upper level but will use roll-out drawers on the bottom where they really are essential,” says Matta. In the end, it is all about making smart tradeoffs and working with a professional who knows how to stretch the budget with smart design.

Newton Kitchens & Design
34 Wexford Street
Needham, MA 02494

newtonkd.com

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