What type of wood you choose depends on your own tastes, the style of your kitchen, and your home furnishings. Today’s truly custom cabinetry can be made of any fine wood depending on that wood’s availability and your price range.

The most common choices for custom cabinets are:

Maple (moderate price) – There are more than 10 types of maple in the North and Northwest.
Most maple used commercially comes from one of 5 species. The most common is the soft maples. Rock Maple is denser and stronger. Certain Rock Maple logs are selected and peeled to create the beautiful “birds-eye” figure. Maple finishes very well.

Cherry (moderate) – Sapwood is pinkish in color while the heartwood is a pinkish brown which will grow to red-brown over time and exposure to sunlight. It is typically straight grained, is moderately dense and strong, and takes finishing very well.

Hickory (Moderate) – Sapwood is light colored, the heartwood is reddish-brown, it is dense strong wood, typically straight grained and takes stains well.

Oak (Moderate) – There are 200 different species of Oak. The most common has light colored sapwood with tan or yellowish brown heartwood. Oak can be straight grained but can often be irregular or cross-grained. When quarter sawn it presents a silvery figure. It is quite dense and strong and takes stain well.

Pine (Moderate) – Pine is either white, yellow or ponderosa. White pine is white to straw colored, not very dense, straight grained and takes stain and paint well. Yellow pine is very similar in characteristics to white pine. Ponderosa pine has yellowish sapwood while heartwood is orange to reddish with very prominent resin duct lines. It needs special attention and surface preparation to take stain and paint well.

Paint Grade (low-end) – Typically Birch, Poplar, Maple or Sycamore.

Exotics (Meaning rare and/or pricey)

Mahogany (high-end) – Most mahogany comes from the rain forests of the western coast of Africa. The wood is reddish-brown and the grain is typically interlocked but can be straight. It is a medium density wood, though not very strong. It takes stain and polishing very well.

Walnut (high-end) – There are many species of walnut being found across North America into South America. The heartwood is dark brown and gets darker with age. It is relatively straight grained but can be wavy. It is a medium density wood but strong. It takes finishing very well. European Walnut is similar in characteristics except that the wood is more gray-brown with a pronounced wavy grain.

Ebony (high-end) – Ebony is a generic name for wood species with very dark or black heartwood. African and Indian ebony are most common. Ebony is typically straight grained but can be curly, wavy or irregular. It is very dense and strong yet also brittle. Ebony is at its most beautiful polished to a high luster.

This article was published by http://kitchencabinetsinfo.com