Hi, and welcome! Congratulations, and commiseration, on your remodeling plans. You have picked the two most expensive rooms to redo and cabinetry is the most expensive component of both...
We have a number of threads going on kitchen cabinets
One on different ways to "remodel" your existing cabinetry (mainly about refacing):http://messageboards.ivillage.com/iv-hgfirsthome/?msg=2858.1
One on replacing cabinets:http://messageboards.ivillage.com/iv-hgfirsthome/?msg=2884.1
One on repainting cabinets:http://messageboards.ivillage.com/iv-hgfirsthome/?msg=2854.1
and one in answer to a question a lot like yours:http://messageboards.ivillage.com/iv-hgfirsthome/?msg=2511.1
If these don't help, perhaps you should check out these sites for tips on how to make your choice:http://www.howtodothings.com/real-estate/a3994-how-to-choose-kitchen-cabinets.htmlhttp://interiordec.about.com/cs/kitcabbasics/ (lots of links to other sites)http://www.ehow.com/how_110320_choose-kitchen-cabinets.htmlandhttp://www.consumerreports.org/cro/home-garden/kitchen/kitchen-remodeling/kitchens-8-07/choosing-kitchen-cabinets/0708_intro_pick_1.htm
We don't really have any specific tips on brands/prices here because these things can vary significantly around the country, we don't really know your taste or or specific plans (have you consulted a kitchen planner/designer yet?), and becasue iVillage's TOS don't allow us to promote specific brands.
I'm sure others will weigh in here with their experiences. Mine, in the past, involved refacing the entire kitchen cabinetry with winter white laminate and changing out the hardware in our former home in Houston, TX --- much easier than new cabinetry, especially as the kitchen was an unusual shape and size and custom cabinetry wold have been required - we took our architect's advice here. It meant we stuck with the original kitchen cabinetry layout, altering it only to accomodate new appliances... but it was cheaper in the long run to put out money into flooring and appliances in that room, especially as w were converting what had been a dark and dank and completely unused porch, adjacent to the kitchen, into a breakfast room space. That, and we were completely gutting a master bath at the same time ...
Please remember us and keep us updated on your projects. We'd love to see photos, for example!
Visit me at That Yank In... and Traveling with That Yank
You are very welcome. I hope that at least one of them helps...
And we look forward to seeing pictures!
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Modern Kitchen Cabinets
Options for Kitchen Cabinets
Stock, Semi-stock, or Custom. Tips for picking the right kitchen cabinet.