SemiHandmade: Custom Cabinet Doors & Drawer Fronts

SemiHandmade: Custom Cabinet Doors & Drawer Fronts

Abby Stone
Jun 23, 2010

As much as I love my home, I've always been frustrated by my kitchen. While the other apartments in my complex have beautiful cabinets original to the building, mine are cheap plain pine. I've stripped them. I've changed the hardware. I've considered painting, decals, even removing the doors all together. The bottom line is I'd love to change the cabinets but…I live in a rental. No kitchen remodel for me. And then I heard about SemiHandmade.

Realizing that there was a market for people who appreciated the beauty of custom cabinetry — but felt it would be out of their price range — craftsman John MacDonald launched SemiHandmade and will be premiering the line at Dwell on Design this weekend. We love the idea: they create custom cabinet doors and drawer fronts to fit the cabinet boxes you already have at a price that is completely affordable — prices were quoted at about 25-35% above the cost of an IKEA cabinet (depending on the wood and finishes chosen). Currently, they'll be focusing their work on full-overlay frameless cabinets (where the doors are flush with the box they cover on all four sides), with the plan to expand to other styles down the road.

Unique in their ability to offer sequenced veneers (where the grain matches from cabinet to cabinet) in woods like walnut, teak, bamboo and white oak as well as specialty woods like reclaimed Douglas Fir, basketball flooring or redwood from wine casks and colored laminate-on-multiply, they design the doors to fit your existing cabinetry, whether sourced from IKEA, Home Depot or another big box retailer. Even better? Their finishes are all low-VOC and water based which means, not only will you keep keep most of your old cabinets from going into a landfill but your new doors will be sustainable as well.

Use them to revamp your cabinetry for the kitchen, yes, but also for the bathroom, living room, dining room, childrens' rooms, whether built-in or free-standing.

Finally, a more affordable way to upgrade our rental kitchen beautifully.


  • Teak facing
  • Redwood wine casks
  • Basketball flooring
  • Oak
  • Reclaimed Douglas fir, sourced from a building downtown Los Angeles
  • walnut
  • Mahogany

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