Glossary of Kitchen Terms

When embarking on a new kitchen project you may come across some terms that you have not heard before. Here we list out some of the more common terms we have found create a bit of confusion, to help you on your way to your kitchen utopia.

Also known as resin or solid-surface worktops they come in many guises.

The main property that sets them apart from other worktops is that they can be joined in such a way that the join is invisible (or inconspicuous). 

Corian, Mistral, HI-MACS, Minerva are some of the popular brand names.

In kitchen terms the word bespoke is used to describe a non-standard unit or units made to customer specific dimensions or to suit a particular function.

Boiling water taps are the latest “Must Haves” in the kitchen and are growing in popularity.
There are two options:
 – One is to replace your existing tap with the boiling water tap that offers both
hot, cold and instant boiling water.
– The alternative is to have your normal tap on your kitchen sink and then install a secondary tap; normally off to the side of the sink; that dispenses instant boiling water.
Quooker is the industry leader for boiling water taps; ensuring a hundred degrees Celsius water at the spout.
The main benefit of boiling water tap is it can save you an awful lot of time.There’s no need to boil kettles and it is extremely energy efficient as you don’t boil any more water than you will use.

Aka: Carcass or Units

The word used to describe the actual ‘boxes’ that make up your kitchen – consisting of two sides, a top rail, a base, a back board and legs.
Cabinets can be broken down into base units, wall units and tall units.

 

Aka: Cabinets or Units

The word often used to describe the actual ‘boxes’ that make up your kitchen – consisting of two sides, a top rail, a base, a back board and legs.
When one talks about the carcass; they are referring to the raw cabinet that sits behind the door of the kitchen, not including the door.

A general term used to describe a man-made material like resin worktops or granite resin sinks

Image of a butt hinge on a kitchenWith plant-on kitchen doors; you will almost always get concealed hinges.
These hinges are concealed inside the cabinet. From the outside you cannot see the hinge.

With in-frame kitchens there are two options of hinging the doors. One is to use the concealed hinges or the option to choose to have a butt hinge.

A butt hinge is a hinge where you can see the hinge from the outside of the cabinet when the doors closed.

The decorative piece that runs across the top of kitchen cabinets. 
Cornice can be ornate or for the more modern look as simple as a square block.

 

Infographic showing cornice, pelmet, scribes, plinth

Granite is a natural stone material mined from the earth; which means that every slab is different and unique.
Granite worktops are normally 20 or 30 mm thick, however they can be built up to give the illusion of thicker worktops.

Picture of an in-frame door A particular style of kitchen whereby each  kitchen cabinet will have a frame (about 3 cm wide) attached to the front face of the cabinet and then the doors sits within that frame.

In-frames were normally used for more traditional style kitchens however, modern variations are becoming ever popular.

The piece of material that is used to fill the gap between the base of the units and the floor. Heights normally range from 100-150mm.

Infographic showing cornice, pelmet, scribes, plinth

Marble falls into the solid stone category; however marble is actually too soft to use as a kitchen worktop.
If you believe you have seen a marble kitchen worktop it is more likely to be a quartz worktop; made to look like marble.
Marble is best left for use as a bathroom worksurface, we would never recommend for kitchens.

The decorative piece that runs across the bottom of kitchen cabinets. Pelmet also serves to hide the undermount lights; although not so important with modern LED lights that are a lot slimmer.

 

Infographic showing cornice, pelmet, scribes, plinth

A term used to distinguish between an in-frame style of kitchen. The overwhelming majority of kitchens in the UK have plant-on doors (as opposed to in-frame).

Quartz is a man-made material which is predominantly quartz mineral (85-98%) mixed with acrylic resin.

Quartz is a durable work surface; which is normally more uniform in colour than it’s granite cousin would be.
Some quartz work surfaces have chips of glass mixed in; to give a slight sparkle effect to the worktop.

The piece of material that is used to fill the gap between the units and the adjacent wall (and in some instances ceilings).Walls are rarely straight and 100% vertical hence the need to ‘scribe’ a filler panel.

Infographic showing cornice, pelmet, scribes, plinth

When your kitchen designer talks about services he/she is referring to physical connections or outlets like gas supply, stop cock, waste outlet, switches etc

An electronic, motor driven touch to open / close mechanism used for drawers, bins and top hung wall units.

Also known as resin or acrylic worktops they come in many guises.

The main property that sets them apart from other worktops is that they can be joined in such a way that the join is invisible (or inconspicuous). 

Corian, Mistral, HI-MACS, Minerva are some of the popular brand names.

Soil Vent Pipe. Main waste down pipe that is often found in the corner of kitchens where bathrooms / WC’s are above. Normally around 110mm diameter.

A manual push to open mechanism used for doors and drawers.

A term used to collectively describe all profiles like cornice, scribe, plinth etc. 

Infographic showing cornice, pelmet, scribes, plinth

The word often used to describe the cabinets that make up your kitchen. 
When one talks about kitchen units; they are generally referring to the cabinet including the door.

Aka: Cabinets or Carcass (without doors)

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