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A Brief History of Cabinets: How Did the Modern Cabinets Come into Being

A Brief History of Cabinets: How Did the Modern Cabinets Come into Being

What is a medium to a large-sized piece of storage equipment that doubles up as aesthetic furniture? Yes, you guessed it right. A Cabinet!

When cabinets were first started to being used, they were designed specifically to store mostly papers and other valuables.

People started using it too as a place to write, like a table, which made another type of cabinets typified by bureaux and secretaries.

Cabinets are often thought to be a result of realisation. Realisation? Of what?

It was realised that since chests doubled up as seating, it provided access via the front rather than the top, and raising the chest a bit higher made easier access to the front.

Consequently, the cabinet was born. Previously as a front-open chest placed atop a table or another chest, and later on its own legs.

While the early cabinets were made to mount on a stand, the later ones included an inferior storage space, which when accessed from the front, used doors, drawers, and drawers hidden behind the doors.

How Important Have Cabinets Grown to Be Over the Years?

Cabinets have always been important pieces of furniture, because of its precious contents.

Slowly afterwards, the best craftmanship in the town was lavished in form of marquetry, veneering, carving and so on.

Cabinets kept growing in size, so much so, that often it became the central piece of furniture in a room.

Because of all this artwork, the cabinetmakers became the most highly regarded woodworkers.

But as years have passed, the term ‘cabinetmaker’ has lost its charm and importance. Cabinetmaker, at present, refers to the built-in kitchen cabinets that are short-lived.

The only point of similarity remains is that of the fundamental construction that rests on a common technique, that is the usage of opposing ‘plies’ or veneers to produce a continuous surface that is large, rather than the older method of framing-and-panelling.

Cabinets are great to store anything, and so we define it as per the things- a display cabinet, a tool cabinet, a curio cabinet, jewellery cabinets and obviously a kitchen cabinet.

The other varieties available refer to self-explanatory peculiarities of construction, like a hanging cabinet, a corner cabinet, a wall cabinet and such similar ones.

Now as cabinets have gone through changes over the years, the types of cabinets have gone through changes too. And today, we would talk as to how the Kitchen cabinets have evolved over the years.

Evolution of Kitchen Cabinets

Kitchen cabinets have gone through many changes in the past 100 years. From being a standalone piece of furniture, it has evolved to become a fully customisable piece of furniture which are attached to the kitchen walls. Let’s check out the evolution.

Pre-World War I Era

Before the turn of the 20th Century, cabinets attached to the kitchen wall were not really a normal feature. Most of the cabinets were freestanding and could be moved around easily.

These freestanding cabinets were found encased in wood, glass or without any encasing. It was only after the industrial upturn of the World Wars that attached cabinetry became trendy.

Post-World War II Era

During the industrial age, many changes and improvements were made to factories and equipment. And these improvements made it possible for mass-produce of cabinets.

Newer and varied material were available, which improved the designs and styles of cabinets further. Minimalistic and frameless cabinets were some of the most popular styles of cabinets.

The Modern Era

Practices and materials have progressed quite significantly during this era. Ready-to-assemble cabinets were available in quality materials of wood and metal.

The modern kitchen was open to personal touches and designer and house owner started specialising their cabinets with various refacing techniques and extra storage.

Other changes that were made in the cabinets include glass doors, removal of cabinet doors, colourful cabinets and so. Owners also personalised their cabinets to showcase their personal preferences more.

And finally,

The Post-Modern Era

Post-modern designs believed in minimalism. It was seen that many post-modern kitchens comprised of wood floors, earthy tones and blank walls. Cabinet colours too were inclined toward earthy tones with minimal designs.

While glass display cabinets were always there, how it evolved over the eras are quite interesting a read. Comment below or write to us if you have liked this article.

Also Read: Buying A Second Home In Pompano Beach – Pros And Cons

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I share technology, business, and personal development insights as a guest author. With a background in computer science and tech industry experience, I offer practical tips and actionable advice to enhance skills and achieve goals. Whether it's optimizing productivity, improving mental health, or navigating the digital world, I'm committed to helping others succeed. When not writing, I explore new technologies, read about industry developments, or enjoy the outdoors.

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