Designing a Shaker-Style Kitchen

In honor of Thanksgiving at the end of the week, we thought we'd touch upon a classically American design style that, like the holiday we're about to celebrate, originated with our colonial ancestors: Shaker-style design. This function-first, no-frills aesthetic was first popularized by the Shaker people (a religious group known for their practicality, and the pride they took in their work and craftsmanship) in the late 1700s, and was applied to everything from furniture, to architecture, to cabinetry. Because of the simplicity of the look, it's remained a popular style choice ever since. Today shaker-style kitchen design, especially in terms of cabinetry, is one of the most in-demand looks for both traditional and contemporary spaces. Given the straightforward, unadorned design, shaker cabinets are incredibly versatile. Typical Shaker-style cabinets are flat with a single raised panel around the edge. They're usually left in a natural wood tone finish, or painted a neutral shade of white.

In the room below, shaker-style cabinetry is paired with minimalist fixtures, contemporary appliances, and granite countertops for a modern look.

shaker-style kitchen

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For a more traditional style space, on the other hand, Shaker cabinetry also works equally well with antique touches, like the cabinet hardware on this built-in hutch. Notice that the cabinet also has bead-board detailing, which is another hallmark of Shaker design. Because of the classic look it adds to a space, bead-board should be left for traditional kitchen designs.

Shaker-style kitchen 3

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Whether you prefer the contemporary look or a more traditional feel, shaker-style cabinetry makes a beautiful and long-lasting addition to any kitchen remodel. To see more examples of this and other kitchen cabinet styles, visit us on Houzz, or stop into our Wellesley, Mass. showroom.

Happy Thanksgiving!