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Because these thick wood-slab tops have their edge or end grain exposed, they are stronger than wood laid on the flat.

That means they resist warping and nicks better than laminate and almost as well as stone.

For full step-by-step instructions, shopping list, and tools list, see How to Reface Kitchen Cabinets.

Make the most of your kitchen's existing storage space by installing a pull-out shelf in one—or all—of the base cabinets.

It has a 1x4 pine frame and ¾-inch birch plywood bottom.

If you're only building one or two shelves, you can save some money by going to a home center or lumberyard that sells quarter or half sheets of plywood.

As long as the frames and doors are structurally sound, you can clean them up and brush on a fresh coat of paint—and within a weekend take that kitchen from dreary to sunny.

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This installation is simple and shock-free, as long as you cut the juice at the breaker box first.

It's amazing what a little veneer and some new doors can do to brighten an aging space.

Both are available through woodworking companies, and some manufactures offer peel-and-stick veneer to make the task simpler. Work carefully, and your kitchen will look brand-new in no time.

contractor Tom Silva started his carpentry career over 35 years ago, he often built the kitchen cabinets he installed for his customers.

"Back then, it was still cost-effective for small shops to build them," he recalls.

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