1. Emotional Choices when Choosing a Kitchen?


    I think that you need to ask yourself some hard questions before starting a project as important as a new look for you kitchen such as for starters… Am I choosing a new look for my kitchen because it makes me feel good or perhaps for a different reason?

    If you have recently moved in to this home you probably would want a kitchen that makes you feel good? Planning to stay put in your new home would tremendously help influence the decision making process and make you choose a kitchen appearance for the long haul. On the other side of the coin however if you are looking to sell your house in the near future it would then be more of a business decision to aid in a quick and financial gain. Refacing your cabinets and replacing countertops will be huge asset and give a sizable return on your investment. It is widely known that an updated kitchen and or bath can greatly help in the resale of a home regardless of which town you are located in. ”Ask any Realtor and I’m sure that they will agree”.

    Other questions that will probable arise might be for example…

    Will I be hiring an interior decorator to help me? Will I like their recommendations?

    Will I choose what’s popular now or play it safe and go with something that is time tested?

    Am I updating to please a spouse or or perhaps my piers?

    Will I have my kitchen cabinets refaced to save money?

    Am I doing this to keep up with the neighbors?

    Will I want more of a low maintenance material to stand up to the daily wear and tear factor?

    As you can see from the list above there are so many things to consider and decisions to be made that it can feel overwhelming. To also reinforce that concern several of my clients have told me throughout my lengthy career that it felt like a monumental task to them also. So relax and understand that you are not alone in this fear and my best advice to you is to trust yourself and chose what you feel is the best solution for you and you alone.

    For more advice or an in-home consultation please call Jim at Nu-Look Kitchens. (847.265.3000)

  2. Back To OLD SCHOOL Refacing

    Do you want the old world look of hand crafted custom kitchen cabinets without the expensive price tag?  Most will agree that you can only achieve that when real high quality wood products are used.

    By old school I am referring to the use of real wood cabinet refacing products rather than synthetic materials commonly thought of when you hear “refacing.” Nu-Look Kitchens is “old school”, using exclusively actual real wood refacing products to deliver what most folks would like but think they can’t afford. Our goal is to deliver truly high quality results that you can be proud of at a very affordable cost.










    There are several companies who provide imitation wood materials in place of the genuine article probably in order to be priced competitively. For example, a couple of close friends who reside on the other side of the country had their kitchen cabinets refaced with what they thought was real cherry wood only to discover that it was not authentic.  To their dismay, what was sold to them as real cherry wood was actually a plastic material called Thermo-Foil. Thermo-Foil in some applications might suffice for the purpose of changing the look of a kitchen but, any way you slice it (no pun intended), it is not the real deal.  One more fact about Thermo-Foil is that it may have the look of real wood but what you are seeing is a photograph of wood grain adhered to p.v.c plastic (you’ve heard of its use commonly in plumbing).  This makes up the plastic sub straight material which is then laminated to the doors, drawer fronts, molding etc.

    When natural products are used, the difference is very noticeable. Natural wood products provide a very distinct appearance because every tree is different.  Climate, location, and even soil type where the tree is grown all have an impact on the wood harvested to create cabinet doors and other parts that go into the construction of your cabinets. The resulting variations provide the unique look of natural wood which transfers to a one-of-a kind new-look kitchen.

    If you desire the beauty of a kitchen that is truly memorable, my best advice is to settle for nothing less than “old school,” natural wood.

    Imagine being the envy of your family, friends, and neighborhood…It could be your reality with a simple phone call to Jim at Nu-Look Kitchens (847.265.3000).

  3. Mixing Old Cabinets with New

    Want to add cabinets to your kitchen affordably?  With cabinet refacing, you can accomplish this goal and get the new look you want without breaking the bank.  Looking back through my completed jobs file, I located many kitchen renewals where I did that very thing:  in Lake Zurich, Lake Forest, Grayslake, Gurnee and probably in your neighborhood too.

    One example would be updating the kitchen by adding new cabinets to create an island where before there was none.  Configuring new cabinets to create an island is a very simple project because they stand alone and do not connect to the other cabinets, so you can let your creative juices flow when developing your own unique island to be a chef’s dream space or the favorite gathering spot for family and friends.  After refacing the kitchen, I simply furnish and install the new cabinets of your choice and then reface them to match the rest. Voile!

    003 - Copy









    Adding new wall or upper cabinets is fairly easy in most cases because most wall cabinets are 12” deep.  Sometimes there is a height or width challenge, but a wall cabinet or bank of wall cabinets can be juggled to fill or reduce the space available as needed.  Alternately, having staggered heights can add interesting dimension and uniqueness to a kitchen.  My wife asked me to incorporate this look in our kitchen and we get many compliments on it.

    Including new base or lower cabinets into a bank of existing cabinets can be a little tricky, but nothing is impossible when you know what you’re doing.  Not all style and rail configurations are created in the same width and height, which causes a condition that sometimes seems problematic. For example, if the space between the floor and the bottom of the new and old cabinets is different, we would simply build one or the other up to be the same height from the floor to have an even or straight line look as if they were all put in at the same time.

    All in all, by utilizing kitchen cabinet refacing in your kitchen rehab project, you can save quite a bit of money and yet make it appear as if you have replaced your whole kitchen.  You will be the proud designer enjoying all the ooh’s and aah’s.

    Till next time please take care,


  4. White to wood: Refacing painted cabinets with wood

    Painted kitchen cabinets can easily be refaced with a multitude of affordable wood products. It doesn’t matter if the existing and older cabinets are painted white or stained in an undesirable appearance they will respond very well to the refacing technique. By refacing over the existing surface there is no need to strip off the old finish that some may have you believe?

    Cabinet refinishing is an entirely different approach than cabinet refacing. Refinishing requires that a stripping agent or strong chemical be applied to dissolve the unwanted coating before a new coat of stain or paint be used. The stripping material may also take many coats to achieve the preferred tone or color you want. When refinishing however the older existing and perhaps out of date door, drawer styles and hardware remain. In my opinion refinishing or painting of dated cabinets could be considered a “band aid” approach which may not accomplish the goal at hand especially for reselling your home.

    By refacing your painted cabinets you can update the appearance in several ways. By that I mean that the style of the doors, drawer fronts, wood species, stain or color, hinges, and hardware for that new cabinet look. Refacing the cabinets with such woods as real cherry, maple, alder or hickory you can soften the possible harsh or commercial look of painted cabinets as well. Beyond the previous mentioned woods which are offered in approximately twenty different finish colors there are several more combinations from which to choose.

    Currently I have been receiving the majority of requests for cherry and hard rock maple kitchens but I do get asked for many other appearance combinations as well.

    All in all the kitchen remains the heart of the home and can be updated to one’s personal preferences and imagination.

    Questions?  Contact Jim @ 847.265.3000 for more information.


  5. A new look for other cabinets in your home

    While the refacing of kitchen cabinets is by far the most widely used process, refacing other cabinets in your home and office is also possible. Kitchen cabinet refacing is now and will always be the main stay in our service.

    Refacing vanity cabinets runs a close second and in most cases and is completed at the same time as the kitchen work. Sometimes the guest bath is refaced to match the kitchen because as we entertain our guests who need to use the facilities, it’s desirable to have them match the kitchen.  As we travel to other bathrooms in the house it is not as important to match the kitchen but often times do.  I have been hired multiple times for example to reface the master bathroom vanity in a completely different style and color than the rest of the house.   On several occasions I was asked to reface the master in a more contemporary look the other vanity themes.

    Cabinets to be refaced in the laundry room and even butler’s pantry almost always are the same appearance as the nearby kitchen cabinets. Those are such close proximity that I agree that they need to match the kitchen and be consistent in appearance as well. Although there are no “concrete rules” about that either.





    ” After ” Dark Java Shaker vanity





    On some occasions I have worked in homes that also have a bar arrange that is not too far from the kitchen and many times will be refaced to match. However you visualize a change in cabinets throughout your home or office you probably have as many options by refacing as you would by removing and replacing them in today’s market.

    Yes, refacing your cabinets today offers you a true multitude of choices far exceeding those choices only a few years ago.

    Questions?  Contact Jim @ 847.265.3000 for more information… Thanks for your time

  6. Older Entries »

Site map Recent posts Reviews Our Partners

Nu-Look Kitchens specializes in affordable cabinet refacing, custom countertops and cost saving kitchen remodeling for all of Northeast Illinois, including Gurnee, Libertyville, Wadsworth, Waukegan, Grayslake, Lake Forest, Lake Bluff, Lake Zurich, Barrington, Mundelein, Vernon Hills, and Deerfield.