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Choosing a Cabinet Material

Style starts with the grain

Decora products use select hardwoods and veneers to create classic and sophisticated cabinets that stand the test of time. Just as no two trees are alike, the unique beauty and elegance of hardwood is expressed in the character of each piece as it's crafted, joined and finished into fine cabinetry. This results in attractive variations in grain and color.

Alternative materials and paint offer a more consistent appearance for those who prefer more uniformity, without sacrificing durability.

Natural hardwoods

In today's kitchens dominated by stainless steel and glass, the natural warmth and texture of hardwood provides a welcome contrast. Wood exhibits defining characteristics such as mineral deposits and knots that contribute to its beauty and can be highlighted by stains and glazes. Your look can even evolve over time, with changes occurring as wood ages and is exposed to light. Humidity also has a significant impact on woods, with dimensional changes lasting several days or weeks. To avoid permanent or damaging changes, maintain the humidity levels at or above 20% when the temperature is below 20 degrees and over 35% when the temperature is above 20 degrees.

Common natural characteristics

  • Bird Pecks – Small marks in the grain pattern caused by pecking birds

  • Burl – A swirl or twist in the grain of the wood that does not contain a knot

  • Sound Knot – A knot solid across its face, which shows no sign of decay

  • Unsound Knot – A circular area that once formed the base of a branch or twig

  • Wormholes – Holes in the wood ranging in size to a maximum of 1/16”

  • Sugar Tracks – Yellowish to dark brownish streaks that run throughout the wood

  • Mineral Streaks – Streaks of color ranging from olive to blackish-brown typically following grain pattern

  • Gum Streaks – Mineral-like streaks of color naturally occurring only in Cherry

  • Heartwood – The mature, usually darker wood, extending from the sapwood to the center tissue

  • Sapwood – Lighter colored parts that grow from inside the bark to the heartwood