What are Inset Cabinets?

Inset cabinets are constructed with doors and headers that fit inside the cabinet frames. This type of look is very classy, with tight and consistent spacing. Read more about this type of cabinet construction below.

White kitchen cabinets

The gap between doors or headers and the frame is 3/32″ to keep the look tight and elegant.

Inset cabinets are constructed with two types of frame profiles: flush and beaded. Flush frames are standard with square edges (no profile), and create a “flush” look to the face of the cabinet. Beaded frames have a single beaded edge on the inside of the cabinet openings that create a more decorative look.

Beaded inset vs. Flush inset
Beaded inset (left) – Flush inset (right)

Showplace inset cabinets are offered with a variety of hinge options: concealed or finial. Concealed hinges include soft close functionality. Finial hinges, which are visible from the front of the cabinet, come in a variety of finishes, including Polished Nickel, Satin Nickel, Oil Rubbed Bronze, and Flat Black.

Finial hinge finish options

Because of the tight gap between the doors, headers and the frame components, there is a challenge that inset cabinets face. They are very vulnerable to dimensional changes. (Click to read our blog post on the effects of humidity on cabinets.) When such things happen, inset doors and headers can bind, sometimes to the point of ceasing to function at all. It is very important to keep the humidity in your home at an appropriate level for this reason.

Classy, elegant Showplace Inset cabinetry. Click the image to visit this home.
ABOVE: Classy, elegant Showplace Inset cabinetry. Click the image to visit this home.

What Does “Overlay” Mean?

Overlay (sometimes called “reveal”) refers to the amount of cabinet face frame that is covered by the doors and drawer headers. In the end, the overlay decision is one of personal tastes and budgets.

Most Showplace door styles are offered in two overlays: partial or full overlay. A few door styles are offered in full overlay only. In addition, several styles are offered in elegant inset versions. Full, partial, and inset doors and drawer headers are available on a framed cabinet box.

ShowplaceEVO doors and drawer headers are available ONLY on a frameless (full-access) cabinet box.

This kitchen illustrates our popular full overlay look.

What’s the difference?

Partial Overlay Bathroom

Partial Overlay

Partial overlay doors and headers are smaller, revealing more of the frame. Since they’re smaller and use less material, Traditional styles also cost less.

Full Overlay Kitchen

Full Overlay

Full overlay doors and headers are larger, covering more of the frame. The result is a sleeker, tighter look.

ShowplaceEVO Frameless Cabinetry

Frameless

Frameless, or “full-access” ShowplaceEVO cabinetry is also sometimes called “European-style” cabinetry. The doors overlay the front edges of the cabinet box, and there is a minimal reveal on each outside door edge for very little visibility of the cabinet box.

White Inset Kitchen

Inset

Doors and headers are set inside the cabinet frame opening with minimal clearance and full visibility of the cabinet frame.

Here are examples of how the doors and headers are sized on each of our cabinet lines. These images below show a base cabinet with doors and a drawer header.

Traditional Overlay

Partial Overlay

Doors and headers lay over the cabinet to reveal a more of the front frame.

International Plus Overlay

Full Overlay – Framed

Doors and headers lay over the cabinet to reveal a small portion of the front frame.

EVO Overlay

Full Overlay – Frameless

Doors and headers lay over the cabinet to reveal very little of the front edges of the cabinet box.

Inset Overlay

Inset

Doors and headers are set inside the cabinet frame opening with 3/32″ clearance. The full 1-1/2″ wide frame components are visible.

Learn more about inset here.