Cabinet Wood Species

There are many wood species to choose from when looking for the right choice for your cabinets. Below are some brief descriptions of the more popular cabinet wood species you can choose from.

Alder is a smooth, fine-grained hardwood with a straight grain pattern similar to Cherry. The color may vary from pale pinkish-brown to a light tan or honey color. Knotty Alder is chosen for its rugged appearance. Knots will be random in size and distribution and will range from tight sound knots to very rustic, split and open knots. Alder is a moderately lightweight wood that readily absorbs stain.

Birch Kitchen Cabinets from KraftMaid

Birch Kitchen Cabinets from KraftMaid

Selected for a usually smooth grain and dramatic color variation, this hardwood typically varies from creamy color to medium brown. Shiny burl wood, grain variation, small pin knots and mineral stains are characteristic. Although relatively light in weight, this species is hard and strong with excellent shock resistance.

Smooth texture, rich color and flowing grain patterns are characteristic of this strong, high shock resistant, moderately hard species. Small gum spots, pin holes, pitch pockets and mineral flecks are characteristic. In a “natural” finish the color may range from nearly white to pink to dark brown, however this species stains well and will gradually darken with age.

A relatively smooth hardwood with a prominent grain; this species is chosen for its dramatic color. Color within the same stave of wood (and across a cabinet door) can vary from a nearly white color to medium brown. Bird pecks, small pin knots and mineral streaks are common. This is an exceptionally heavy and hard wood with high shock resistance.

Maple Kitchen Cabinets from Greenfield

Maple Kitchen Cabinets from Greenfield

Selected for smooth texture, this hardwood is selected for uniform grain and characteristic light color. Predominantly creamy white color may have some color variation from white to a light gray or tan. Random mineral streaks, worm tracks and occasional birds-eye patterns are characteristic. Maple will slightly mellow with age. Due to the density and hardness of this species, natural expansion and contraction may be more apparent at joints. This is a hard, strong wood with excellent shock resistance.

Red Oak (rotary/plain sliced)
Prominent open grain patterns are characteristic of oak. Varying from “cathedral” (arched pattern) to close-knit vertical grain, some color variation from reddish tan to medium brown is possible in its natural state. Occasional pin knots and mineral streaks are also characteristic. This abundant species is a strong hardwood with high shock resistance.

White Oak (Quarter Sawn)
This is perhaps one of the best-known hardwoods in the world. Quarter Sawn White Oak gained widespread popularity for its predominant use in fine furniture during the Arts and Crafts movement. Quarter Sawn yields less lumber, increasing pricing, but it is known for straight and consistent grain pattern with an attractive and random “flake” across the grain. Some color variation will be seen from a light grayish tan to brown. White Oak is a strong and heavy hardwood with high shock resistance.

Practically any wood species is available from Kitchen Views. Other hardwoods such as mahogany and walnut are available in a number of cabinetry lines. Hundreds of exotic veneers are also available in an endless number of colors. From Figured Anigre to English Sycamore, Zebrawood or Wenge, Kitchen Views offers every opportunity for unique and creative design.

Kitchen Views

1 Response to “Cabinet Wood Species”

  1. 1 Kitchen Cabinet July 5, 2012 at 11:51 pm

    If you’re going to remodel your kitchen, why not go for the gold with the finest available kitchen cabinet wood options? That means choosing from the solid hardwoods: hickory, oak or maple. Now that you have it down to the top three, however, how do you make the ultimate choice? Following are some facts that will assist you.

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