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We have one existing wall of cabinetry that we don't want to mess with other than painting. Have LOTS of trouble finding a craftsman who "gets it". We keep hearing that we should rip out, replace, blah, blah, blah. Anys suggestions?

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Beautiful.  Hold onto those cabinets like grim death.  Your search for a nice match of cabinetry that is the right size for your available space might be a goose chase.  I would keep looking for a carpenter who can and will make copies of your existing cabinets.  Matching salvage hardware will be a lot easier to find. 

Try Craigslist. I've bought two sets of cabinets, one from a 1915-1920 bungalow and one from an 1900 farmhouse. I plan to rip out my circa 1980's kitchen and put it back the way it should be. Otherwise, find a good carpenter that will custom make some. They're out there, but it won't be inexpensive. The cabinets I got on Craigslist were $100 each.

As a carpenter that has built and removed the type of cabinet you [want] have, I wish you luck. Most of this eras cabinets were built in place with no back. Typically a large hammer and pry bar are the easiest solution for removal.Very often this totally destroys the cabinet. As far as cost, A good carpenter with the right tools could build an average kitchen in about 3 weeks. Your kitchen looks relatively easy even with the inset doors. This would be to build not finish. It's all in finding the right person that really appreciates your old house. That's why I do it. Good luck

I love your kitchen cupboards!  So glad to hear you're keeping them.  Old great kitchen cabinets are very hard to find - I did find one on Craigslist (and it was backless) - but that was just by chance and the only one I've ever seen after searching for years.  I agree - keep looking for a carpenter who will make them for you ... have any vocational or carpentry schools nearby?  Might find someone up for a project.  Good luck.

Very beautiful style cabinets, hope you will keep them for your kitchen!

I like it and would certainly keep it. I'm actually quite jeleous as all of my house's cabinetry has been ripped out now for years. My kitchen literally has none and the butler's pantry they turned into a small powder room so those are long gone as well.

my apollo house is the same way. butlers pantry is now first floor laundry and powder room. In answer to custom cabinets in different styles, there was a company at the home show that will build just about anything that you want, and they looked amazing. Company name is Acclaim Kitchens. they had really nice cabinets

I believe we may have found a solution. I have found a local designer who has a pool of workers that she trusts. I called her and she brought her cabinet guy. He seemed undaunted and he is actually working on some really custom and "important" jobs in the area (i.e., a museum called Discovery park that will have a replica of the town with windows made the way they were made in the 1800's, etc.). He also seems to appreciate the architectural integrity of the house and my desire to work with what we have. I would much rather go local than to Memphis or Nashville. I think it is important to have the cabinet maker be several miles down the road than 3 hours away! I will post pictures when the project begins.

sounds great. cant wait to see pictures. I would like to redo my kitchen but it was built around 1805 and is log. I would have to go really primitive and I am not sure I like the extreme primative look

You may want to google search for 'architectural salvage yards', or a 'habitat for humanity home store' in your area.

 

 

Behold my kitchen!  An entire wall of original kitchen cabinets from 1892. 

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My budget for remodeling is pretty much zip. 

As a "cheap" rehabber, if I could not afford the perfect cabinet man you found, I would keep my eye out for Craigslist cabinets with the same shape - less the glass.  I would paint them white and install top molding to match your current ones..

The kitchen itself looks awkward and hard to cook in.  I understand many odd pieces are used for storage and the microwave, etc.  Will the new layout be ergonomically designed for cooking, dining and walking through the house? 

I would love to see a floor sketch as your ideas progress.

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