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Ikea Kitchen Upgrade: 11 Custom Cabinet Companies for the Ultimate Kitchen Hack

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Ikea Kitchen Upgrade: 11 Custom Cabinet Companies for the Ultimate Kitchen Hack

December 27, 2018

Love the price and functionality of Ikea kitchen components but not the cabinet front choices? An array of new companies is offering custom cabinet fronts to pair with Ikea’s kitchen systems. “Ikea cabinets are like building blocks,” says Finnish company A.S. Helsingö. “The quality is solid,” adds John McDonald, founder of SemiHandmade. “And we especially love their price; even with SemiHandmade doors, you’ll easily save 30 to 40 percent on the cost of a typical custom kitchen.”

With the bones of a kitchen from Ikea (who, by the way, source all hardware, hinges, and drawer slides from reputable company Blum) and customized fronts from one of the below nine companies, the high-low, semi-custom kitchen is more accessible than ever.

1. A.S. Helsingö

Finnish company A.S. Helsingö offers oak cabinet fronts that coordinate with Ikea&#8
Above: Finnish company A.S. Helsingö offers oak cabinet fronts that coordinate with Ikea’s Metod system. Shown is the flush-panel Ingarö door made of oak veneer framed with solid oak rails. Also available: Samsö doors, which have a clean, seamless look, and Ensiö doors, which have a more traditional design. All cabinet fronts are available in smoked or natural oak or in a painted finish.

2. Superfront

Superfront designs and manufactures doors for Ikea&#8
Above: Superfront designs and manufactures doors for Ikea’s Metod and Faktum kitchens (shown is a Faktum kitchen with Superfront’s No Pattern Doors). Doors are available with or without pattern and in a range of color options. They’re made in maple or birch and can be customized with different hardware options. For more, see our post Superfront: An Instant Upgrade for Ikea Cabinets.

3. SemiHandmade

LA-based company SemiHandmade designs a range of door fronts (shown here in Sarah Sherman Samuel&#8
Above: LA-based company SemiHandmade designs a range of door fronts (shown here in Sarah Sherman Samuel’s kitchen are the SM Clay Shaker fronts) in natural wood, painted, and printed finishes that coordinate with Ikea’s cabinet boxes. “We offer low-priced doors that match Ikea prices and we have doors that are three times that much, but it’s worth it for people to get exactly what they want,” says founder John McDonald. For more, see Ikea Upgrade: The SemiHandmade Kitchen Remodel.

4. Dunsmuir

Designers Jeff Madalena and Jason Gnewikow did a gut remodel of their Brooklyn kitchen working with Ikea cabinet boxes and Dunsmuir cabinet fronts. Dunsmuir designs custom fronts for Ikea kitchens that include end panels, appliance fronts, kicks, and spacers in everything from MDF to white oak and walnut. See more of the above kitchen in our post House Call: A Brooklyn Brownstone Goes Gothic.
Above: Designers Jeff Madalena and Jason Gnewikow did a gut remodel of their Brooklyn kitchen working with Ikea cabinet boxes and Dunsmuir cabinet fronts. Dunsmuir designs custom fronts for Ikea kitchens that include end panels, appliance fronts, kicks, and spacers in everything from MDF to white oak and walnut. See more of the above kitchen in our post House Call: A Brooklyn Brownstone Goes Gothic.

5. Kokeena

Kokeena, a company founded in Portland, Oregon, designs ready-made doors for Ikea&#8
Above: Kokeena, a company founded in Portland, Oregon, designs ready-made doors for Ikea’s Sektion, Akurum, and Godmorgon systems. Their offering includes The Minimalist (white painted slab doors), The Woodsman (wood-grain panel doors), and The Slabtown (textured laminate doors, shown).

6. Koak Design

Designers Sandy and Frank Sonnemans of Netherlands-based Koak Design create Ikea kitchen and drawer fronts from European hardwoods. The fronts are available in a range of finishes from painted (shown) to whitewashed and black-stained. While based in the Netherlands, Koak Design does ship their kitchen doors internationally. Contact the company for more information.
Above: Designers Sandy and Frank Sonnemans of Netherlands-based Koak Design create Ikea kitchen and drawer fronts from European hardwoods. The fronts are available in a range of finishes from painted (shown) to whitewashed and black-stained. While based in the Netherlands, Koak Design does ship their kitchen doors internationally. Contact the company for more information.

7. Reform

Danish company Reform offers architect-designed cabinet fronts for Ikea kitchens. They offer their own design, Basis, inspired by 60s architecture, along with designs by firms Bjark Ingels Group, Henning Larsen Architecture, and Norm Architects (shown). Their latest offering is the UP kitchen (pictured), a collaboration between the architects at Lendager Group and Dinesen, The cabinet fronts and countertops, inspired by the classic craftsman kitchen, are made using cuts from solid, reclaimed Douglas fir left over from Dinesen projects. For more, see our post High-Brow Hack: Norm Architects Reinvent the Ikea Kitchen and From Reform: A New Line of Ikea Cabinet Fronts Made with Dinesen Wood.
Above: Danish company Reform offers architect-designed cabinet fronts for Ikea kitchens. They offer their own design, Basis, inspired by 1960s architecture, along with designs by firms Bjark Ingels Group, Henning Larsen Architecture, and Norm Architects (shown). Their latest offering is the UP kitchen (pictured), a collaboration between the architects at Lendager Group and Dinesen, The cabinet fronts and countertops, inspired by the classic craftsman kitchen, are made using cuts from solid, reclaimed Douglas fir left over from Dinesen projects. For more, see our post High-Brow Hack: Norm Architects Reinvent the Ikea Kitchen and From Reform: A New Line of Ikea Cabinet Fronts Made with Dinesen Wood.

8. Plykea

 A new entry in the Ikea cabinet-front hack category: London company Plykea Custom Cabinets. Founded by Tim Diacon, a digital product designer, and Adam Vergette, a furniture designer and Vitsoe alum, Plykea offers good-looking premium grade FSC-certified birch ply cabinet fronts that can be faced in either birch, oak, or walnut as well as three choices of cabinet pulls. See more at Plykea in London: Stylish Plywood Cabinet Fronts and Worktops for Ikea Kitchens.
Above: A new entry in the Ikea cabinet-front hack category: London company Plykea Custom Cabinets. Founded by Tim Diacon, a digital product designer, and Adam Vergette, a furniture designer and Vitsoe alum, Plykea offers good-looking premium grade FSC-certified birch ply cabinet fronts that can be faced in either birch, oak, or walnut as well as three choices of cabinet pulls. See more at Plykea in London: Stylish Plywood Cabinet Fronts and Worktops for Ikea Kitchens.

9. Custom Fronts

Made-to-order custom cabinet fronts for Ikea base kitchen components can be ordered from Custom Front, a husband-and-wife team out of Sussex, England. For more see Custom Fronts: Bespoke Ikea Cabinet Doors Inspired by Nature.
Above: Made-to-order custom cabinet fronts for Ikea base kitchen components can be ordered from Custom Front, a husband-and-wife team out of Sussex, England. For more see Custom Fronts: Bespoke Ikea Cabinet Doors Inspired by Nature.

10. Naked Doors

UK-based Naked Doors sells slab and Shaker cabinet doors and drawer fronts in a variety of painted colors and stains. This kitchen is from the home of former fashion buyer Lisa Jones; see more images in A Star Is Born: A Rehabbed London Maisonette from a Newly Minted Designer, High/Low Secrets Included.
Above: UK-based Naked Doors sells slab and Shaker cabinet doors and drawer fronts in a variety of painted colors and stains. This kitchen is from the home of former fashion buyer Lisa Jones; see more images in A Star Is Born: A Rehabbed London Maisonette from a Newly Minted Designer, High/Low Secrets Included.

11. Scherr’s

Based in North Dakota, Scherr&#8
Above: Based in North Dakota, Scherr’s makes its own kitchen cabinets as well as just cabinet and drawer fronts for Ikea’s Akurum and Sektion kitchen lines. In this blue kitchen featured in Before and After: A Buzzfeed Founder’s Renovated Rowhouse, Budget Edition, Scherr’s provided both the larder and the cabinet fronts.

N.B.: This post is an update; it was first published on November 8, 2016.

More for Ikea fanatics:

Finally, get more ideas on how to evaluate and choose kitchen cabinetry and hardware in our Remodeling 101 Guide: Kitchen Cabinets & Hardware.

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