Close this search box.

What are the Three Types of Kitchen Cabinet Doors?

Dive into the world of kitchen cabinetry with our comprehensive guide on the three types - Partial Overlay, Full Overlay, and Inset. Learn their unique features, advantages, and disadvantages to make an informed decision for your culinary space.

Table of Contents

Step into the necessary part (heart)of every home, and you’ll find a whirring hub-sphere of creativity, passion, and tasty smells. The kitchen is, without any doubt, the beating heart of any family. Where culinary masterpieces are gathered up and incredible memories made, step behind the simmering pots and hot pans. There lies an unknown element that often stays unnoticed- the kitchen cabinets.

Opulent Modern Kitchen Cabinet

Picture a world in which each cabinet has its own special story to unfold. It captures your purposes and engendering belief. Today we delve into the beguiling empire of kitchen cabinets understood as a partial overlay; three different types await discovery: The mysterious Partial Overlay, the sublime Full Overlay, and the timeless Inset.

Why wait until you can get extraordinary cabinets? Join us as we open the doors of these three fascinating kitchen cabinet styles that will remake any culinary room into an inspiring masterwork.

1. Understanding Partial Overlay Cabinets Door

Understanding Partial Overlay kitchen Cabinets Door

Definition and Characteristics:

Standard Overlay partial overlay cabinets, or Traditional Overlay, have doors and drawers that cover only a part of the face frame of the kitchen cabinet. In this sort of type, the doors and drawers are smaller in size than the doorway of the cabinet. It gives it its unique look, perfect for those seeking a touch of recollections but with modern-day functionality.

Advantages of Partial Overlay Cabinets Door:

  1. Cost-Effectiveness and Budget-Friendly Option:One of the most attractive parts of Partial Overlay Cabinets is their affordability. Since they demand less material and are easier to construct, they’re more budget-friendly than other cabinet types. It makes them a good buy for homeowners who want to commit to a classic look without crashing the financial limitation.
  2. Installation Process Easy: Partial Overlay cabinets are rather easy to install, leading them to be an aesthetically pleasant DIY experience or looking for the lowest installation costs at the house. It becomes an effortless approach by lining up the doors and drawers with a visible face structure acting as a guide.
  3. Visible Face Frame – Traditional And Classic Appeal: The visible face frame of Partial Overlay cabinets gives off a bit of old-world appeal in the kitchen. If you’re smitten with classic or country-style looks, these cabinets will grab your heart, built on fresh-looking appeal lodged by family traditions.

Disadvantages of Partial Overlay Cabinets Door:

  1. Less Storage Space:One trade-off with Partial Overlay cabinets is that the visible face frame lessens overall storage space ever so slightly compared to Full Overlay or Inset cabinets door. If maximizing storage capacity is your top priority for your kitchen, you may need to plan and optimize the layout carefully.
  2. Visible Face Frame:While the face frame adds to the cabinets’ classic appearance, some homeowners prefer a more seamless and modern look, which means the visible face frame might need to align with the minimalist aesthetics strived by specific design styles.

2. Full Overlay Cabinets Door

Full Overlay kitchen Cabinets Door

Definition and Features:

Full Overlay cabinets door fully cover the face frame of the cabinet box. Unlike Partial Overlay cabinets, Full Overlay construction results in a smooth, uniform front with few gaps between doors and drawers. They decode a clean, modern look.

Advantages of Full Overlay Cabinets Door:

  1. Modern and Sleek Aesthetics: Without a doubt, full overlay cabinet doors are at the zenith of modern kitchen design. The seamless appearance they offer creates an air of modernization and elegance that makes it the perfect choice for stylish as well as minimalist styles. Full Overlay cabinets will exceed your expectations hand over fist if you envision a kitchen with clean lines polished finish.
  2. Large Storage Space: Full Overlay cabinets provide large storage space as compared to other types of cabinets, covering most of the cabinet structure with doors and drawers. The feature allows you to make the best use of your kitchen’s square footage by optimizing functionality and organization.
  3. Smooth Surface for a Seamless Look: The lack of a hidden face structure improves the sleek look without sacrificing terms functionality, providing an optimum expanse of cabinetry that permits all features to sing together harmoniously.

Disadvantages of Full Overlay Cabinet Doors:

  1. Higher Cost Compared to Partial Overlay Cabinets:The raised material and craftsmanship cost needed to achieve the seamless build on Full Overlay result in higher prices. While this investment is worth it for those looking for a stylish look, it can be considered for someone on a tight budget.
  2. Professional Installation Often Required:To achieve the accurate alignment and seamless look of Full Overlay cabinets is a challenging task but requires professional installation very often.

3. The Beauty of Inset Cabinet Doors

The Beauty of Inset Cabinet Doors

Definition and Characteristics:

Inset cabinet doors are a real testament to fine woodworking as well as precision. Constructed with doors, along with drawers that fit inside the cabinet structure, these cabinets have a rife and seamless formation. The doors sit entirely within the cabinet opening. They give a look of understated beauty that grabs the hearts of design lovers.

Advantages of Inset Cabinet Doors:

  1. Timeless and Elegant Appearance:The modern and elegant appearance of the Inset cabinet makes it appear timeless and classic. This is durable, stylish, versatile, and affordable with an easy-to-clean glossy laminate surface complete with drawers that can be changed to 4 different heights for over-mortising comfort when utilizing storage space.
  2. Precise and Custom Fit:The exact and detailed craftsmanship put into the hit of the perfect fit of Inset cabinets showcase, in detail, a thorough work and promise by the crafters to deliver only perfection. Every door and drawer is meticulously measured before fitting, resulting in a superior balanced, and ideal aesthetic look.

Disadvantages of Inset Cabinet Doors:

  1. Higher Cost and Craftsmanship Requirements:Fine craftsmanship and attention to detail are often needed in manufacturing. Inset Cabinets have led to their price tag being higher than some other cabinet types. But the investment must go well for those who enjoy the looks and artistry they bring.
  2. Susceptible to Seasonal Changes Because of Wood Expansion:Inset cabinets are typically made using solid wood and can flare up, sensitive to changes in temperature and humidity. During specific seasons, the pace at which a cabinet door aligns turns on if the wood is expanding or contracting.

FAQs About Kitchen Cabinet Doors

Unearth the secrets of kitchen cabinetry design with this insightful FAQ. Understand the intricate details of partial and full overlay doors, discover the pros and cons of inset cabinets, and much more. Your dream kitchen starts with understanding these key details.

The difference between partial overlay and full overlay doors lies primarily in the amount of the cabinet frame that the door covers. A partial overlay door covers only a portion of the frame, leaving some of it exposed, which creates a traditional look. On the other hand, a full overlay door covers the entire frame, presenting a modern, seamless look.

The overlay of a cabinet door typically refers to how much the door overlaps the face frame. It’s a matter of personal preference and the design aesthetic you’re aiming for. In a full overlay, the doors and drawers cover the entire face frame. For a partial or standard overlay, the doors and drawers overlay the face frame by half an inch on each side.

Whether full overlay or partial overlay cabinets are better depends on your aesthetic preference and budget. Full overlay cabinets offer a more modern, seamless look but are usually more expensive. In contrast, partial overlay cabinets provide a more traditional look and are generally more affordable.

The most common overlay on cabinet doors is the standard or partial overlay. This is due to their classic appearance and affordability, making them a popular choice in many homes.

Inset cabinets have doors and drawers that fit inside the cabinet box with the front of the doors and drawers flush with the cabinet frame. Non-inset cabinets, on the other hand, have doors and drawers that overlay the cabinet frame. The difference lies in aesthetics and cost, with inset cabinets generally costing more.

Inset cabinets are more expensive because they require a higher level of craftsmanship and precision to ensure that the doors and drawers fit perfectly within the cabinet frame. The cost of materials is also usually higher as more material is needed to achieve the inset design.

The main problems with inset cabinets include the potential for the wood to expand and contract due to changes in humidity and temperature. This can lead to doors sticking or not closing properly. Also, inset cabinets offer slightly less storage space compared to non-inset types due to the space required for the doors and drawers to fit within the cabinet frame.


In conclusion, through the world of kitchen cabinets, we explored the unique charm and qualities of three main types: Partial Overlay, Full Overlay, and Inset cabinets. Partial Overlay cabinet doors are delighted with their classic appeal and budget-friendly core. In contrast, Full Overlay cabinet doors are branded with sleek modern aesthetics, having increased storage area, while inset cabinets are the model of craftsmanship.

5 Strategies to Increase Sales in Your Modular Kitchen

They showcased timeless elegance and precision fit. Cabinet types were made to meet different design styles and preferences so that homeowners can make a kitchen that images their persona as well as culinary ideals. Factors like budget, Kitchen size, and wanted aesthetics are considered by one in making this wise decision.

Why Choose Us – BK Ciandre:

Go for BK Ciandre for all your kitchen cabinet and minimalist furniture needs. Our state-of-the-art production facilities, as well as Italian quality standards, only ensure superior products every time. We offer a complete range of collections, including kitchen cabinets, ceramic tables, doors, walk-in closets, and modular TV wall cabinets. We can easily match any space by focusing on seamless integration and customizing. Our services cover clients all around the world, so sure to be a reliable partner for all your furniture projects. Trust BK Ciandre to bring your vision to life and create inspiring living environments.


Lasted Articles for You

Contact Us

Just leave your email or phone number on the contact information, and we can send you free quotations of our various designs

Angela Peng - Co-founder & CEO at BK Ciandre

I’m Angela, the co-founder at BK Ciandre. With the support team, we’d love to learn about your business, requirements & expectations, just fill in the form and talk with us.

Sale Manager

Submit The Form Now, Get Best Quote Today.