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If you have yet to see our kitchen reveal post, you may want to hop over there first and check out all the details of our newly renovated kitchen!
We used IKEA cabinets with doors and drawers from Semihandmade, and today I wanted to share my honest review of our cabinets now that we have lived with them for three months!
For those of you not familiar with Semihandmade, they are a California-based company that makes doors and drawer fronts specifically for IKEA cabinets. When I learned about this option, I was thrilled because it meant we could get exactly the color cabinets we wanted, and the idea of real wood doors keeps the cabinets from looking like generic IKEA cabinetry.
Overall, my assessment of the cabinets is that we LOVE them! I can’t believe the quality and features…especially at the price we paid. There are a few things I wish I had done differently now that we are done, but overall, they’re pretty fabulous. Now to the nitty gritty details…
The entire cost of our cabinets was $4700 (including paint). We caught both IKEA and Semihandmade during sales, but even without the sales, the price would have been hard to beat.
We started out by designing our kitchen on IKEA’s home planner. We were starting from scratch with our kitchen, so all we had was rough measurements and the placement of the sink and window. We experimented with lots of cabinet options and layouts, and this is what we landed on.
One difficulty with our layout is that because IKEA cabinets are only available in certain widths, we couldn’t make it exact, and we knew we would have to fill some gaps with filler pieces. Also, my island concept isn’t something we could purchase, so we planned on adding table legs to the existing island cabinets in order to create the island we envisioned.
After finishing our IKEA plans, we sent the renderings to Semihandmade. Because they are so familiar with IKEA cabinets, they were able to take our renderings and send us an exact breakdown of everything we would need to order from them as well as everything we would need to purchase from IKEA. Because our closest IKEA is 3 hours away, it was very helpful to have a list so we knew that we would get everything we needed!
We chose the DIY Shaker style from Semihandmade, and they fulfilled our order to our exact specifications. The doors were all delivered on a pallet to our driveway.
We started our kitchen installation by installing all of the IKEA boxes while we painted the doors, drawer fronts, and filler pieces.
Because the rest of the house was still under construction, we made a little painting station in the guest room and went to town spraying and rolling them (see this post for my recommendations on painting cabinets from our last kitchen).
The semihandmade doors and drawers install exactly like those from IKEA, so we simply followed the standard installation instructions which were made easier by instructions provided from Semihandmade as well.
After everything was painted and cured, it was time to install!
I knew we had to have a narrow island based on the size of our kitchen, but I still wanted the space for barstools, so this island design worked out perfectly! Jeremy bought two stair banisters at Home Depot and cut them to size to use as the island legs and then filled in the space between with 2x4s.
And now that everything is together, here are some of my favorite things…
I love the sleek style of the shaker style doors. They fit the style of our kitchen perfectly.
I really love the functionality of having mostly drawers. The only standard cabinets we have are the upper cabinet and sink cabinet. Everything else is drawers, and they have made storage and organization so much better!
If you have the option to choose drawers over doors, do it!
One of my favorite IKEA functions is the option of the hidden drawer. Three of our drawers have a secondary hidden drawer inside which makes for even more storage and organization.
We even started storing all of our plates and bowls in a drawer instead of upper cabinet. And IKEA cabinets come standard with soft close which makes me feel like I’m living in luxury.
There are a few things I would do differently if I were to start over on this kitchen, but they are very minor.
My main piece of advice would be to check and double check your measurements before designing your kitchen and choosing cabinet sizes. I ended up with much bigger filler pieces than was necessary because I thought I had less space than I did. It turns out I could have used two 18” cabinets next to our stove rather than two 15” cabinets. It’s such a minor thing, but I do wish I had been a little more careful with my measurements because I would have had a hair more storage and a hair less filler space.
If you choose to go the IKEA+Semihandmade route, be prepared that there is quite a bit of DIY work involved in the process, but I think it’s absolutely worth it! The results are beautiful, and Semihandmade is wonderful to work with. They will help you every step of the process!
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