Cabinetry Terms

Learn the language

From mullion doors and tall cabinets to Thermofoil and toe-kick, our glossary of cabinetry terms is designed to turn the novice user into a well-versed contributor to the design of any project.

01.  Rail
02.  Stiles
03.  Center Panel
04.  Inner Edge Profiles
05.  Outer Edge Profiles
06.  Face Frame
07.  Case
08.  Drawer Front
09.  Toe-kick
What Makes a Cabinet

The Basic Cabinet Elements

01 Rail : The horizontal framing elements of a cabinet door.
02 Stiles: The vertical framing elements of a cabinet door.
03 Center Panel: The center of the cabinet door — this can be raised or flat.
04 Inner Edge Profiles: The inner edge profile is the style of the inside edge next to the center panel of the door or drawer.
05 Outer Edge Profiles: The outer edge profile is the style of the outside edges of a door or drawer.
06 Face Frame: This is the “frame” fixed to the front of the cabinet which provides a fixing point for the cabinet doors.
07 Case: The case is comprised of the outer walls of the cabinet, made from plywood or furniture board.
08 Drawer Front: Also known as a drawer face, this is the section of the drawer that is visible when the drawer is closed. It’s common for the drawer front to match the cabinet door style or for it to contrast with a solid slab drawer front.
09 Toe-kick: The recessed space near your feet at the bottom of a cabinet.
Understanding Joinery

Cabinet Joinery Methods

Dovetail Joint: (Slide 01.)
Dovetail joints are considered one of the strongest joints in the industry and are a fine solution for cabinetry drawer boxes.

Mortise & Tenon: (Slide 02.)
Commonly used for 5-piece cabinet doors and drawers, this joinery technique is known for its strength and versatility.

Mitered: (Slide 03.)
A joint made by beveling each of two parts to be joined, usually at a 45° angle. This joinery technique gives cabinet ends a seamless appearance and adds strength to cabinet doors.

Mortise & Tenon Cabinet Door Construction Method
Mitered Cabinet Door Construction Method
Understanding Cabinet Doors

Cabinet Door Construction Types

Full Overlay Cabinets: (Slide 01.)
This is a cabinetry door construction style where the cabinet doors and drawer fronts are sized to cover most of the cabinet face frame, leaving minimal space (reveal) between adjacent doors. This option creates a more custom look and is one of our most popular styles.

Standard Overlay Cabinets: (Slide 02.)
Also known as Traditional Overlay, this construction type has a more exposed face frame (wider reveal) compared to Full Overlay cabinet doors when the doors and drawers are in the closed position.

Inset Cabinets: (Slide 03.)
This cabinetry construction method is crafted by hand-fitting the door and drawer front within the face frame of the cabinet, giving a full view of the cabinet frame, and having the doors/drawers flush with the face frame. Inset cabinetry is a popular and distinctive look inspired by early American furniture makers and offers an authentic, hand-crafted look with timeless appeal.

Cabinet Door Styles
What Makes a Door Style?
Raised Panel Doors
Cabinet Door Styles

Raised Panel Doors

This type of door style has a raised center panel with a specific profile or contour or both. Raised panel cabinet doors work well for traditional and transitional looks.

Material Terms

Cabinet Finishes & Materials

Matte Foil Cabinets
Glaze Finish:

An artistic, hand-applied finish technique where a semi-transparent color is applied over the entire stained or painted finish for added depth and dimension by highlighting and accentuating the carved details of the cabinetry. Dura Supreme offers two types of glazes: a full-coverage glaze which is sprayed over the entire surface and tints the base stain color, and an “accent” glaze that is hand-applied with a small brush only along profiles and edges.


This finish technique is hand-detailed by a finish artisan to create a weathered, aged, or antiqued appearance.

Acrylic Cabinets:

This offers either a reflective, high-gloss finish with a smooth and glossy sheen to your cabinetry or an ultra-matte finish with a soft and flat finish. A preferred option for high-end modern or contemporary styled designs.

Veneer Cabinets

In addition to Dura Supreme’s standard veneers, we also offer a selection of exotic veneers including Bamboo, Walnut, Shale, and White Oak.

Laminate Cabinets:

This is a man-made cabinet finish made with carefully crafted layers of Kraft paper impregnated with melamine resin, providing a truly consistent color and texture. Dura Supreme’s High Pressure Laminate (HPL) finish is infused at high pressures resulting in a finish which is extremely versatile, durable, and consistent.

Thermofoil Cabinets:

Also known as “foil cabinets,” these cabinets use a flexible vinyl finish material which is applied by heating and molding the vinyl over the cabinetry wood. Many are attracted to Thermofoil cabinets because of their easy care and maintenance.

Storage Accessories

Cabinetry Storage Terms

Pull-Out: (Slide 01.)
A cabinet storage accessory that can be opened with one motion. This is where opening the cabinet door or drawer also “pulls out” the storage accessory at the same time.

Roll-Out: (Slide 02.)
A cabinet storage accessory that can be “rolled out” after the cabinet door is opened, allowing the user to easily access items stored in the back of a cabinet.

Cabinetry Hardware Terms
The Mechanics of a Cabinet
Hardware Terms


Also known as “Quiet-Close,” Soft-Close drawers and doors include hardware with a built-in ability to be silent and self-closing. The Soft-Close feature softens any slamming noise and helps prevent damage to the cabinetry. 

*All of Dura Supreme’s product lines automatically include Soft-Close cabinet drawers and doors.

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