Photography: Arash Moallemi
Scott McGillivray, contractor and star of HGTV Canada's Income Property, sits down with us to discuss how to put a personal spin on standard cabinetry.
With more than 200 kitchen renovations under his tool belt, Scott McGillivray knows where to save money and where to splurge. He certainly won't blow his budget on custom cabinetry, for instance, when flat-pack cabinets could do the job for a fraction of the price. "More than half of the kitchens I've installed have been Ikea kitchens," he says. "I've done so many of them that I can put them together in my sleep!" Here's what the savvy investor had to say about putting a personal spin on standard cabinetry.
Brett Walther: Your Ikea kitchens don't feel like they belong in an Ikea showroom. Why?
Scott McGillivray: The secret is to go above and beyond what you get in the box, customizing it to work for your kitchen. That could mean stacking upper-cabinet units to make the most of a high ceiling or flush-mounting cabinet doors to give them a more contemporary look.
BW: What's the best way to upgrade cabinetry that's still in good condition?
SM: I retrofitted my own seven-year-old kitchen this year, taking out all of the base cupboards and replacing them with drawers—a more efficient use of space. Everything gets lost in a base cupboard, which typically is two feet deep and has only two levels of storage: the bottom and a half shelf. Sliding drawers give you 25 percent more storage.
BW: What guides the layout of your kitchen cabinetry?
SM: A lot of people talk about the "kitchen triangle," which is the space between the oven, the sink and the fridge. Keeping that triangle tight and making sure that it isn't blocked by an island or a peninsula is what makes a kitchen feel functional.