Have a Question? Ask Us!


The Kitchen Hybrid Effect

Tips and Tricks Kitchen Design and Style

Tne of the more taxing parts of a kitchen remodel is paring down your options. And I can sympathize. When looking into a kitchen remodel, there are countless materials all screaming for the opportunity to have a place in your kitchen. But where does that leave you? Possibly stressed, overwhelmed, or worn out. So, to make it easier for you, we’ll be tackling one of the bigger rivalries in the kitchen remodeling game: laminate vs. wood. It’s process vs production and both are looking to entice you to one side or the other. And while both materials are fantastic options for your cabinets, anything from your lifestyle, and budget, to upkeep are valid influences on your decision. 






Nature vs. Manmade

For the purposes of this article, we’ll be looking at laminate as a process through cabinet refacing and wood as used in a full remodel to better understand the longevity of a refacing job versus a full remodel and what both bring to the table.  

One of the first questions you should consider when it comes to laminate vs wood is if you would prefer to have a natural, from the earth material or an engineered product. There are aesthetic and practical considerations for both. 

Wood cabinetry is made from lumber that is stained, shaped, cut, and glued together. While your actual wood species options will differ from company to company, here at Kitchen Magic we offer three: maple, cherry, and oak. What’s the difference? Let’s dig in:

  • Oak – Known for its rich coloring and attractive grain, oak has become a staple material in many kitchen remodels. While some might consider oak as a singularly golden color, oak comes in a variety of colors, from pale tan to rich brown, to reddish tones.  
  • Maple – As maple has a very subtle texture and a ‘tighter grain’, this makes it the most prime candidate of the three wood types for painting. Aside from painting, Maple also comes in a multitude of grain styles and wood tones.  
  • Cherry – With a natural reddish glow that comes in rich, dark tones, and lighter golden reds, cherry is considered the more luxurious and elegant of this trio. The fine grain of cherry gives the wood a smooth finish. 

Make it personal

Maple-wood-Driftwood-Stain-Brown-glaze-crp10875-squareNow, staining the wood cabinetry allows you to pick your favorite of the three and alter its color to match your design needs. After a stain is applied, a conversion varnish is a seal that goes over the wood to protect its integrity. This is a sealant that adds a level of resistance to moisture as well as durability. Manufacturers will pick topcoat sheens that complement the finish type of what would eventually become your kitchen cabinets. 

Laminate on the other hand is best considered as a process where the cabinet boxes are covered in a decorative high-pressure laminate and new cabinet doors are made using a decorative vinyl overlay that is fused to an MDF (medium density fiberboard) substrate to match, a process known as thermoforming. This is a process known as refacing. Whether or not you might have reservations about this process, it’s important to keep in mind that laminate has come so far to the point where the design and characteristics have evolved in so many ways to match all design needs. 

While both wood and laminate offer their own unique possibilities, another factor to consider is budget. Lumber by nature is a volatile product and in recent years, its price has increased. Laminate has become a far more affordable alternative in past years when compared to wood. 



A hybrid kitchen remodel may include custom-built cabinets, such as an island or pantry that perfectly match the refaced, existing cabinetry. The result is a highly personalized and transformational kitchen cabinet design.

Remodels like this will improve the aesthetics and function of a kitchen, while also increasing the property value should you decide to sell down the road. The 2022 cost vs. value report says that a minor kitchen remodel will return 74.7% of the investment.



How to hybrid: Big and small kitchen remodel ideas



Our Designers propose solutions for storage problems, addressing issues you didn't even know you had. Stacked dry goods in the garage or mixed in with dishware do not present a functional and organized kitchen. Designated storage for dry goods, spices, cooking essentials, and other everyday items will unclutter the heart of your home.

Currently, hybrid kitchens are so popular that a majority of the newly remodeled kitchens by Kitchen Magic utilize a hybrid design model. And their designers don’t see the trend slowing down as the formula always suits a custom solution for every customer. Even with the pandemic in the rear-view mirror, many remodeling homeowners still have storage on their wish lists. 

Below are several of the most popular design scenarios for which a homeowner embraces a hybrid design plan.



Pass on the peninsula




Incorporate a custom-crafted kitchen island instead of a peninsula that’s more conducive to gatherings. More homeowners with older homes are bidding adieu to their kitchen peninsula, as the U-shape is a configuration that tends to "trap" people into a particular prep or dining area. Instead, allow your kitchen design team to create a kitchen island for increased workflow. The kitchen island is also a user-friendly layout for dining and social gatherings.

Stock up on storage spaceCREDENZA

A custom hutch or built-in desk is a welcome addition to working and learning at home.  Add cabinets, shelves, cubbies, and glass fronts.

Discover how you can turn an open corner into a super functional work-from-home zone. Reface the existing cabinets and add a custom deck that suits your home office situation













Working from homehybrid-desk

A custom hutch or built-in desk is a welcome addition to working and learning at home.  Add cabinets, shelves, cubbies, and glass fronts.

Discover how you can turn an open corner into a super functional work-from-home zone. Reface the existing cabinets and add a custom deck that suits your home office situation.



Design details


Glass-front cabinets flanked by new pantry cabinets allow you to flex your design muscle and display your new home store finds with pride.

A hybrid kitchen design allows for a design team to claim extra space for new possibilities to store non-perishable foods, work from home, or display. So whether you plan to add an adjacent pantry, a credenza, or a mudroom with cabinets, the sky's the limit with the help of skilled craftspeople and designers that utilize space wisely.

We can help dream up and accomplish unique new ways to organize and store dry goods, spices, canned goods, baking essentials, and other everyday items in the heart of your home.











Mix & match kitchen stylescustom-china-cabinet

Up your style with a hybrid mix of materials, woods, texture, and color.

More than highly functional, a hybrid kitchen offers a canvas to masterfully mix color, texture, and materials in savvy and sophisticated new ways. This classic cherry display cabinet adds fashion and function to an otherwise empty space.

Suppose you haven't seen newly trending white with natural wood kitchens. In that case, you will be amazed to view the simplicity of the look and feel of endless mixed hybrid possibilities like this cherry hutch with rustic kitchen cabinet pulls added to a refaced white kitchen.









Say 'hi' to hybrid kitchen cabinets & remodel your home in Lehigh Valley, PA

Ditch your kitchen remodel DIY project and let our team of experts transform your cooking space. At Kitchen Magic, our signature refacing consists of premium North American lumber or solid veneer to set the tone for a timeless, functional kitchen design for your home.

Explore how you can change the way your kitchen cabinets and countertops look and function with a free design consultation. It's fun, informative, and completely free!

Just give us a call at 866-525-7999 or schedule your free design consultation online. We’ll make sure your home in Pennsylvania turns out exactly as you imagined it!



New call-to-action



Finance Your Kitchen Remodeling Project with Kitchen Magic



Dream up your new kitchen with us!

Set Appointment
New call-to-action