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Christy's Forum Posts: 13
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By Christy in Dickson, TN on 11/28/2006


Hi everyone....

I wanted to open a topic about outfitting the most expensive room in the house in an effort for all of us to share the deals, ideas, design ideas, etc that we have come across. The reason for this is that I found the mack-daddy of cabinet deals, but I am struggling with granite.

I am sharing my contact info for these people in an effort to help you guys out. I am looking for contacts as well, so I think spreading the joy is the way to go. They don't even know their names are on this site, so please don't think they had anything to do with this advertisement. They are just nice to work with and helped me a great deal.

I searched for 8 months about kitchen cabinets. I talked to no less than 20 shops, distributors, custom-cabinet makers, and the like only to find that they were subpar and not what I wanted or so expensive that I would have been cooking on a hot plate for years.

I almost went with IKEA as they are the bomb as far as hardware and quality, but the door styles are a little too spartan for the style home I am building. Our house is all stone and HardiPlank, since we want it to look like its been on this hill for ages. The IKEA cabs would be perfect for a more modern design though. If you order from IKEA, do not do it online... call them and speak to the kitchen designers... the wonderful lady I spoke with is named Anne Lawlor..her email is ANNE.LAWLOR@MEMO.IKEA.COM. She is an incredible person and really patient. She spent so much time with me on emails and over the phone and didn't lose her cool when I finally went with someone else's cabinets. I highly recommend her to anyone. IKEA shipping is high, so pick them up from the store if you can. I am sure Anne can arrange that, but buy them from her so she will take care of any problems.

The lady I bought my cabs from sells for a company called Alert Data Inc. She sells them on eBay, and they are the finest quality I have yet to see. I paid a little over $6,000 for 56 lineal feet of cabinetry including pull-out drawers, hidden hinges, a gorgeous coffee stain/glaze, crown molding, rope moldings, and ALL plywood construction. There are minor details that I would change, but at that price, I am just floored at how great they are. KraftMaid cannot begin to compare. The link for Vicki is alertdatainc.com

If you are looking into cabinets with lots of storage space and organizational tools, email this lady, Mary Volkman... email is getcookinginc@yahoo.com. She is really a great designer and was going to outfit my whole kitchen for around $9,000 with those super cabinets that Diamond sells. Diamond was rated #3 in Consumer Reports, so I was hard-pressed to pass them up, but Vicki's price just worked better for us. Mary also has really cool countertops there as well. The countertop kits she sells are $199, and you just get as many kits as needed.

I haven't bought our appliances yet, but I will probably just go the Sears scratch and dent. We have always bought our stuff there. Great buys!

Our flooring is called Heartwood Amber, and it was on eBay as well. It is hand-scraped laminate that is thick and absolutely stunning. It looks so much like real hardwood that my friends are quite jealous!! It was $1.99 sf. The company is called simple floors. Just look up hand-scraped laminate and you will see them.

As far as countertops are concerned, I have thought about the DIY granite site, but they seem a little pricey. There are quite a few sellers out there who are selling the countertops that we can fabricate, but I am intimidated. My husband is quite handy with wood and makes all kinds of cabinets, bookshelves, etc, but I am hesitant to take on the granite. Local shops around here want $4,000-$6,000 for my countertops, which is ridiculous. I already had granite tile, and it is NOT worth the effort or money. The slab is more valuable and easier to care for.

We almost went with solid surface. easyfabcountertops.com will be where we buy if we do go this route, but they are more expensive than granite, I believe.

Does anyone else want to share there kitchen story with me, so that I might find some relief to this stress? Or, if you are a granite fabricator, would you share your tricks of the trade with me? :-) Thanks for reading.


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By Yvonne in Helena, AL on 11/29/2006


You're about one week too late on your post! They wouldn't happen to do bathroom cabinets, would they?

As for counters, I am also struggling with a good source. I was originally looking at soapstone, but two local places want $8K!!! Jerusalem Stone is $5K, which is about $1.5K more than I wanted to spend. Granite won't fit the style I am putting together. It is really frustrating trying to find a good deal, and not coming up with anything. Good luck with your search!


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By Joe in Ruskin, FL on 11/30/2006


I know this might seem a bit off the wall, but big builders all over the country are really struggling right now. If we see a new subdivision or condo project that has come to a severe slowdown, it might not hurt to contact the builder, as he might just have inventory that he would be happy to sell at a reasonable price (since he probably purchased at better prices buying in quantity) simply to lower his product inventory. Heck, he might even have a super crew that he doesn't want to lose due to the lack of work, and be willing to offer up their services for installation at a reasonable price just to keep them active and happy with him.

Just a crazy idea!

Joe H


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By Christy in Dickson, TN on 12/5/2006


Yvonne,

Yes, she does rather plain bath cabinets, but they fit my style fine. I am getting all the vanities from her.

Honed granite looks a lot like a more expensive stone if you ask me... also limestone might be good. Have you thought of going to the quarry with a fabricator and picking out what you want? Just a thought. Soapstone really doesn't make a good counter, so no loss there. A friend of mine did a countertop in a slate slab... it is gorgeous!!! But expensive!


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By Greg in Miamisburg, OH on 12/6/2006


Hi Christy,

I'm in the planning stage for a home east of you in White County, south of Cookeville. My wife and I like the ADI cabinets you recommend, but did you "touch" them before you bought them? They appear to be pretty straightforward to put together. For the cost difference, I'll be more than happy to do the labor. However, I'd probably buy a small cabinet (if I had to) in order to confirm the materials and construction.

Greg


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By Steven in MN on 12/6/2006


I am using Room & Board concrete slabs for a bathroom counter. 24x48 $29 at their outlet center. They make larger sizes as well. I'm going to cut a hole in it to countersink a stainless bowl.

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By Christy in Dickson, TN on 12/7/2006


Greg:

That's exactly what I did. If you do order something, try to get one of the three-drawer pieces... the drawers are incredibly well-made and I just can't say enough about them. If you don't like them, then you have a drawer set to use in the pantry or closet. I did this with an IKEA drawer piece that I love. It will be in my pantry.

Easy to put together, though cam locks are not my fave. I have put them together with the cams, then reinforced with drywall screws. Every single piece of these cabinets is plywood though, and hardwood veneers. I love them. I will try to take a picture if you want.

CB


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By Lori in Reno, NV on 12/7/2006


Christy,

I went to eBay and couldn't find a company by that name selling cabinets. We are at the stage of deciding what to do about cabinets. We have a very large kitchen and don't want to sell our grandchildren to afford cabinets.

Lori


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By Christy in Dickson, TN on 12/8/2006


Lori,

I know what you are going through.

Try this one... alertdatainc.com

On eBay, her name is different... I would have to get back to you with that.

I also have now bought my vanities from her too.

I have ordered the granite countertops from Froman Granite on eBay... we'll see how it goes. I finally found a guy who can cut the sink hole, but he says he has to take the countertop with him to his shop. I am scared... what if he breaks it? Will he buy me a new one, or am I just sunk?


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By Karla in Silver Springs, NV on 12/8/2006


Maybe write it into the contract who will pay for what if he breaks it or puts the hole in the wrong spot.
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By Phillip in Tampa, FL on 12/11/2006


Lori:

Most of the higher-end kitchen stores around here featured Kitchen Craft cabinets, and there are web vendors who will sell you Kitchen Craft cabinets at near-wholesale rates. My whole kitchen (lots of expensive cabinets) with soft close drawers, huge island (with lots of finished surfaces), glass front doors, glazed finish on half and painted finish on the other half (both most expensive finishes they offer) will be about $15K. The catch is that I have to install (or have someone install them). But compared to the local bid of over $30K I got for the exact same cabinets from two local shops, I'll save my $15K and install them myself...

One other thing - you have to either pay them to do your design or you do it yourself. They mostly work with builders who do the layouts themselves. They sent us the Kitchen Craft book and we were able to do ours with no problem... and we got EXACTLY the layout we want.

Phillip


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By Lori in Reno, NV on 1/10/2007


Phillip,

Thank you. We are just now getting a bid on Kitchen Maid cabinets from HD. I am not looking forward to this price, but I will Google Kitchen Craft as you suggest. I will let you know the price difference.

Lori


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By Phillip in Tampa, FL on 1/11/2007


Lori:

In the end, I went with a local shop. It turned out my new neighbor owns a cabinet shop, and he was able to come close to the web price, but included installation and the design headaches. Even though the finish quality may not end up as nice as a production line like Kitchen Craft, we're getting maple boxes (KC is particle board), BLUMOTION drawers, and many other upgrades that will overshadow the finish in the end. Plus, I end up with a great early relationship with my new neighbor!

Phillip
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By Jenee in Katy, TX on 3/2/2007


Philip

Please post pictures of your cabinets when you install them!

Thanks


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By Lori in Reno, NV on 3/5/2007


We are going with KraftMaid.

Our home package came with cabinets (in the package price), but since IHE was unable to get our home from Nu-Fab (their regular panelized company) at a reasonable price, they decided to go local for everything (mistake).  

Now that we are at the needing-to-order-cabinets stage, I decided to shop around for them to try and help out.

Lori


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