Kitchen remodeling in Northern NJ

3 easy steps to remodel a kitchen

It's Time to update Your kitchen

We know that people can become very frustrated and overwhelmed when they start thinking about the kitchen remodeling process.  But it’s normal because there are so many things to consider: kitchen layout and design; cabinetry brands and quality; cabinetry door style and finish; whether you should upgrade the flooring or move walls to create more open space; upgraded appliances and countertop choices; picking the right kitchen remodeling contractor; how this investment will reflect on your personal day-to-day living and activities; budget for the project and so much more! 

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Our goal at Alexander Kitchens & Baths in Denville, NJ is to simplify the process so you actually enjoy creating your dream kitchen. With over 15 years in the kitchen remodeling industry we have gained an incredible amount of knowledge and would love to share it with you.

We break down the whole kitchen remodeling project into 3 easy phases: Plan, Design & Enjoy. Prepare yourself to deal with and visit quite a few people and places including: kitchen designers, kitchen remodeling contractors, your local town hall, appliance & lighting stores, a kitchen & bath showroom for your cabinetry, a stone yard for your counter tops, and the tile store near you for your flooring and backsplash tile.

When you choose Alexander Kitchens & Baths to remodel your kitchen we will work with you every step of the way to simplify the entire process.  In our large Morris County, NJ kitchen, bath and tile showroom we provide many of the products and services you need, all under one roof: Complimentary, expert kitchen design, Quality kitchen cabinets (in hundreds of styles, materials, stains, colors and prices to fit any budget), Fabulous kitchen floor & backsplash tile options, Quartz countertops from leading manufacturers, Professional, experienced contractor’s and Designers to put the look all together.   

Concentrate on one phase at a time and your remodeling project will go nice and smooth! 

#1 plan

#2 Design

#3 Enjoy

#1 Kitchen Planning

If you are thinking about remodeling your kitchen, most likely your current set up is at the end of it’s service life or it simply doesn’t reflect your personality and way of living.  Now is the perfect time to go from thinking about to actually beginning the process to create the kitchen of your dreams.  Here are the questions you should be ready to answer when you contact a kitchen remodeling professional such as Alexander Kitchens & Baths. 

For your information, our company offers financing through our trusted partner

Measuring Guide

 Now you need to take the measurements of your kitchen. Most places you go to will ask for the detailed plan to give you the quote for the cabinetry. Here is a quick guide how to properly take the measurements of your kitchen:

  1. Draw a sketch of your kitchen
  2. Number each wall on the floor plan
  3. Start the measure from a corner.
  4. Include molding when measure windows and doors.
  5. Continue measuring around the room.
  6. Measure from the corner of the wall to the middle of your sink and your range
  7. Measure ceiling height including the soffit if any.
  8. Measure the size of your appliances.
  9. Remember to measure everything twice 🙂

Tip: If you can’t get the full measurement of the wall in one shot, choose the reference points (like the edge of the cabinet or appliance) measure from the corner to the reference point and then to the opposite corner. Add up the measurements to get the full width.

Our company does it all for you during in-home consultation

Layout Tips

Need help? We can go over details during your visit in our showroom

Congratulations, you are now ready for the step #2 !

#2 Kitchen Design

First and Foremost – the kitchen is the soul of the house, that’s the place where your family and friends will be spending a lot precious moments, so please don’t waste your time trying guess if the next owner of the house going to like your kitchen. You are the priority! Let’s break it down in 2 steps: kitchen layout itself and actually choosing the cabinetry, countertops and etc. 

Which cabinets are the right for you?

Choosing the right cabinets for your home can an overwhelming step but before you begin your research you should have the answer for the following question – How much you’ve set aside for your cabinetry in your budget? As we discussed earlier your cabinetry expense should be between 25-35% of your total kitchen remodeling budget. This amount will eliminate or add more options to your cabinetry choice. For instance, if you have 12’x12′ L- shape kitchen your cabinetry (base cabinets, 36″ uppers cabinets and crown molding) should cost as follows:

In our showroom we carry 7 different lines of cabinetry to fit any budget

Cabinetry construction and finish options - pros & cons

Cabinetry construction and finish options - pros & cons
  • Pros: stile and rail are 1-1/2″ to 3″ wide and constructed of solid wood. This frame helps to keep the cabinet squire and sturdy, sided of the cabinet can be only 1/2″ thick. With this box construction you can have a dual tone finish of the cabinet which gives a nice tradition look. Framed boxes are used for custom inset look.
  • Cons: because all that frame around you actually loosing at least 1-1/2″  of the opening for the drawer – basically the drawer space itself. When installed, you will see some of the frame between the doors – depending on the door overlay it can be between 1/4″ to 2″. Clean up inside is a little harder because of the small lip the frame creates inside the cabinet.
  • Pros: If you are looking for a slick design, that’s the box to go with – when two cabinets installed together the reveal between the doors will be around 1/8″. Only 3/4″ thick sides will give you extra storage space in the drawer. Some accessories may not fit into framed cabinet of the same size as frameless.
  • Cons: sometimes the sides are not made out of the plywood so the hinge mount can loosen up over the time. Not as sturdy so requires more skill to install. In most cases front edge if finished with color matched veneer and can be easily damaged and hard to fix. Less door styles available. Less tolerance between the doors requires more adjustments.
Painted Door
  • If you see a solid color without visible wood grain – it’s painted !
  • Pros: super wide variety of finish options. Virtually, if the color can be painted – it’s available for the finish. I most cases we would use one of the colors out of Sherwin Williams or Benjamin Moore paints. Different color glaze can be added to door profile or applied over the whole door for really elegant touch.
  • Cons: can be easily scratched but almost impossible to fix – you will never match a factory finish. Scratches will be more visible on lighter colors. Hair line cracks may appear at the wood joints on the door and it’s not considered as a defect. Shrinkage of the center panel may show unfinished surface.
Stained Door
  • How to know if stained? If you clearly see the wood grain it’s stained.
  • Pros: Beautiful natural look in variety of woods. Stain penetrates the wood vs paint laying on top so it’s much easier and less visible to fix if damaged. Different color glaze can added to the door profiles as the accent. Rustic look can be achieved by adding pegs, sanded edges, the look of saw cuts and etc.
  • Cons: Wood is a natural product and each piece takes the stain differently that’s why you shouldn’t expect your kitchen to look exactly like your sample – it will be very close, but can be a little bit darker or lighter. Sometimes wood look cabinetry can be too dark or doesn’t fit the style of the house.

Hinge overlay refers to how much the door overlaps the frame of the cabinet. Visually, you will see the difference when the door is closed – partial overlay will show more of the frame, full overlay will cover 95% of the frame. Inset – means that the door is sitting flush with the frame and not over it. Very important – if you planning to use inset cabinetry, upper and lower cabinets should have increased depth by 1″ from standard – wall cabinets form 12” to 13″ and base cabinets from 24″ to 25″ – to create the same storage space as in the cabinets with full or partial overlay

How to choose a cabinetry style

The easiest way to start is to look at the pictures with different kitchen designs.You can find plenty of them on our website or search for images on Google kitchen – just type Kitchen Design Ideas. You can search specifically for traditional kitchen design, contemporary kitchen design, transitional kitchen design, country style kitchen, rustic look kitchen and etc. Browse through different door styles, different color combinations, see if anything catches your eye.

Where to buy kitchen cabinets

We have over 200 door and quartz top samples available in our showroom

Where to buy the cabinets

Local Showroom

  • Pros: You supporting local business; complete kitchen design (styles, colors and etc); face to face interaction and personal attention to details; Alexander Kitchens & Baths is one stop shop, only one or two people oversee your entire project – design, ordering, construction so if any unexpected issues arise you know who to call; 100% customer satisfaction – that’s what we live on; 5-7 lines of cabinets available to fit every budget,  wide selection with more custom approach; more countertop choices; personal pride on every project. You only spend time to picking out the colors, the rest being done for you behind the scenes.
  • Cons: not all showrooms carry flooring (we have a tile showroom); not all showrooms have a crew to take care of entire remodeling project (we do have in-house crew); sometimes not enough space to fit many kitchen displays; same or little more pricier because of the cost to run the business – rent, insurance and other overhead.

Box Stores

  • Pros: Large space available = more kitchen displays; open for business 7am-9pm; offer in-house credit lines and accept other cards with no additional fee; different types of flooring available; free in-store design; 5-7 cabinet lines available; great advertising makes you feel that it’s the cheapest place to shop.
  • Cons: One guy can’t answer all your questions regarding the project; kitchen designer never sees your home and cannot make any suggestion; they want you to sign off on the parts list which is complicated to understand; remodeling services more expensive and handles by the third parties which will point fingers in case of any issues; no quality control over whole project; no dedicated person to your project – to many people involved; customer satisfaction is not the goal, sale numbers are the priority; sometimes more expensive and limited choices on the countertops; free in-store design means you seat there for hours and wait till the guy is trying to design a kitchen.

Online Stores

  • Pros: You can buy your cabinets without getting off your comfortable couch; cheaper cabinets; when budget is that small, that will be the way to go, but check local stores first – the have those RTA cabinets as well.
  • Cons: You don’t know who deal with; very limited door styles; no onsite measurements offered – you have to do it your self; you have to take full responsibility for ordering all correct parts and quantities;  your never see the actual cabinet before you get the shipment; delays if something is ordered wrong & you are responsible for the return shipping; no installation offered; nobody ever saw your space and cannot offer any advice; cheap prices =  do not expect anything spectacular, they are using the cheapest quality wood, hinges and drawer mechanisms; the lower the price, the more awful the after-sale service will be; cannot be KCMA certified, as there is no way to guarantee the quality of the finished product since the cabinet is not being assembled at the manufacturer; usually manufactured overseas, so replacement or missing parts cannot be obtained easily – if at all.

Wholesale Stores

  • Well,,, there are no wholesale stores, there are no stores that “used to” sell only to contractors and designers, but NOW (what a luck) sell to public. All kitchen cabinet showrooms deal directly with the factory. If this is imported line, we deal with directly with the importer and NONE of those companies sell directly to the public. Do not fall the signs like ” Cabinets at wholesale prices” because there are no wholesale prices. In most cases those are cheaply made cabinets and basically free – but we all know that free cheese is only found in ……. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is 🙂

# Enjoy

You are almost there 🙂 All selections are made, everything is order! Only a few weeks left before you get to enjoy your new kitchen. Now it’s your contractor’s job  to finish all that hard work you have already done. Here are a few tips how to pick tips how to pick the right contractor:

  • Every construction project starts with the estimate. For everybody’s protection all specifications and the scope of work should be spelled out in the written estimate. Here is what our estimate looks like. Kitchen remodeling project is a complicated process and you should be aware of any costs that included or may come up during the process.
  • Check the reviews about the contractor online , see the pictures of the previous work
  • Ask questions how your house is going to be protected during renovation. For example, we cover all the floors with heavy duty cardboard called a Ram Board. That protects existing flooring from scratches and other damage that may occur during construction. Probably the most dust occurs during demolition and drywall sanding. All doorways should be closed off with plastic to eliminate the spread of the dust during the process. In addition to that, we install 1200 cfm exhaust fan which creates the airflow out of the house and not into your rooms. During drywall sanding we use professional equipment which eliminates 99% of the dust. Check out this tool if interested – Festool – Planex.
  • Insurance is a must. There are 2 types – general liability and workman’s compensation. First one covers your property from the accidental damage which may occur during renovation, and the second will cover all the workers in case of personal injury while at your house. Here is our Certificate of Liability Insurance and Workmans Compensation Insurance
  • It takes about 360 – 400 hours between all men in total to complete medium size kitchen remodeling project. So the crew of minimum 2 men should be there 8 hours a day, 5 days a week to speed up the process.
  • Do not start the project before you get the cabinetry and other supplies for the project. If something goes wrong with the delivery or wrong product sent – you will be weeks without the kitchen. Kitchen remodeling project is long enough and we don’t think you want to extend it.

We thank you and appreciate your time  that you spent reading this long page. Our company is in very competitive business but we prefer an honest environment. Incompetent contractors will go away if people will start making an informative decisions!

If you have any questions or suggestions please feel free to connect with us


Check out this great video about the colors for your home !

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