Generally, when you have a cabinet door made, that door consists of four pieces of wood arranged in a frame-like manner, plus a center panel. The center panel is made of flat wood. Recently, however, cabinet makers have been becoming a little more experimental, and they've been using different inlays for their cabinet door center panels. Here are three unique inlay options you might want to consider if you're having custom cabinets made.
You've probably seen lattice on fences or around the bases of raised patios. It's made from thin pieces of wood arranged in a slanted, checkerboard-like pattern. You can see through the empty squares between the thin pieces of wood, but not very clearly. Latticework is very texture-heavy, so it can be a great option for cabinet inlays in a country kitchen. You could echo the look in your window shutters or even add latticework as an embellishment on a dining room table. Traditional lattice is white, and white lattice certainly looks nice as the simplicity of the color takes away from the busyness of the inlay, but technically you could paint it any color you want.
Glass is can be really underused in the kitchen, considering how easy it is to keep clean. It has such a simple, modern look, and you can change your color scheme whenever you want without having to change out the glass. When you choose cabinets with glass inlays, you can see the items inside those cabinets, making glass a nice choice for cabinets where you want to display things like your china and teapots. You can even have the glass etched with a simple pattern or with your initials to add unique character. Frosted glass also looks nice if you don't want your dishes clearly visible.
3. Metal Mesh
Metal mesh inlays look pretty amazing in a more modern, industrial kitchen. They play off stainless steel appliances really well. To prevent the cabinets from looking too dark and dreary, you will usually want to paint or stain them with a light color to contrast the darker metal mesh. And although you might think metal mesh would be see-through, it really only lets light shine through. People won't be able to see inside your cabinets unless they stand really close and make a point of looking. However, the light that comes through the metal mesh makes your cabinets less appealing to insects and pests that typically look for dark places to hide.
Each of these inlay options has its own pros and cons. Discuss them with your local cabinet builder; they'll help you choose one that works for your needs.