Kitchen Remodel,  The Home

My Budget-Friendly Custom Kitchen Cabinets

My Custom Cabinets Cost Less and Are Non-Toxic (and NOT made in China)

What? How is this even possible?? I had 4 criteria in selecting a new cabinet system for my kitchen:

  1. Non-Toxic.
    Did you know that most cabinets have MDF with fillers like Formaldehyde?

    These highly toxic chemicals outgas for ages potentially contaminating everything that touches your food (and the food itself).

    So it goes without saying that if it’s going to touch your food ware and your dry foods, spices, etc, then it should be 100% food safe, right?

  2. Not Made in China.
    It’s not just about keeping jobs here in America. There is a pattern of conduct in China when it comes to manufacturing methods that I just can not support.

    There’s been a history of adding toxic additives to food items, and materials (because they need to dispose of these harmful chemicals anyway or to cut corners, save money, etc.).

    The craftsmanship is usually sub-par because of the lack of rigid standards that you would normally expect. And, the labor conditions are often horrendous.

    So, I try to not buy from China wherever possible.

    I know. I know. But they’re so much cheaper than the ones that are made in America!  Not so.

    But I’m jumping ahead of myself.

  3. Durable and Made with Materials Not Made in China.
    Don’t laugh. I know this sounds redundant, but bear with me.

    So, the wood and material that comes from China can also be pretty sketchy. It can be soaked in toxic chemicals and formaldehyde, and just NO.

    I didn’t want that crap in my kitchen touching my food and slowly poisoning my home.

    I wanted something that was quality crafted with solid wood and materials that are of known excellent quality. You have to watch this one, folks. Sometimes it says, Made in the USA and in little print says: With Materials Made in China.

    I wanted no part of that nonsense.

  4. Budget Friendly.

    Let’s see now…

    Non-toxic, eco-friendly, solid construction with all domestic materials, custom made to my specs for less than the quote I got from the big stores for their Ready to Assemble cabinets?

    Um…Yes, please.

I went to Home Depot, a local cabinet company, another local company, a not-so-local cabinet company, and back to Home Depot. I have to say that Home Depot was awesome and they do have a couple brands that are Made in the USA of quality materials, but the cost was higher than I wanted to spend, and as it turns out, I needed custom built anyway.

Why I Needed Custom Built Cabinets for My Kitchen

See that doorway that leads to my pantry hall just beyond my kitchen?

My bare cabinets installed

That doorway is only 24” from the wall on the right side of my kitchen, leaving me just 23” of depth. But base cabinets are standardly 24”. That presented a problem. But as you can see, I have nearly 40” on the left side, so why not go 25” on that side to make up for the lost inch since I’m going custom anyway?

But wait, isn’t that going to cost even more? Actually, no.

I spent quite a bit of time working out the design and flow of my kitchen. I wanted a kitchen I could use well with minimal wasted space. I decided to rethink my kitchen from the bottom up, and that’s how I came up with this design.

You can see that it’s nearly all drawers (which are generally more expensive than cabinets).

I scoured the Internet using a number of different phrases trying to find what I was looking for.

Then I found this video where this guy throws two cabinets off a 30 foot roof.

Amazing right?? I had to find out more.

So, I searched for their company, searched reviews, and after all that, took the plunge.

Best. Move. Ever.

Let’s see here: Made in America with materials they harvested right here in America. Family owned generations of cabinet makers still doing what they love. No fillers. No toxic additives or chemicals. Customizable to meet my specs. Free shipping on orders over $3000. and less than the made in China cabinets?

Pinch me.

Custom kitchen cabinets and concrete floating shelves and concrete counter tops. Almost there.

I’m not going to cover all the details of the experience in buying from Barker Cabinets (I’ll cover that in a separate post), but I will say this: The contractor who installed my kitchen is a carpenter by trade and has been doing this for years, he was so floored by the quality of the packaging, materials, instructions, and attention to detail, he wanted all their information for his company.

Even the hinges and rails are made here in the USA.

All my cabinets cost just over $3000. That’s a total deal!

The drawers all have that yummy silent close feature (so do the cabinets).

Once they were installed, I created a custom color I loved with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, and then painted the kitchen cabinets myself. I love them!

Kitchen after remodel in blues and coastal colors.

If you’re in the mode of replacing your existing kitchen cabinets, check out Barker Cabinets first. They’re awesome.

I know this sounds like an ad for their company, but alas, no, I don’t get any sort of deal or compensation for telling you about them. I just want more people to have non-toxic kitchens that don’t cost an arm and a leg. And I love family operated businesses and quality Made in the USA products.

Though maybe they’ll see this and give me or you some sort of discount some day? I do need to remodel my bathroom…

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