Reclaimed wood has become popular in just about every room in a home. Reclaimed wood has a somewhat vague definition. Put simply, it is wood that was processed and used for one purpose but is then repurposed. In practice, it generally means wood that has weathered or aged enough to be noticeably distressed. That can mean chipping, flaked paint, burn marks, oil stains, and more. Exterior wood from the sides of barns is one of the most sought-after types of reclaimed wood. It is sought after for many uses, cabinets included.
If you keep your eyes open and your ears to the ground, you’ll likely be able to find some reclaimed wood from someone doing demolition or remodeling at an old home. When wood was more readily available and synthetics more rare, wood was the material of choice for most parts of a house. That means an old home will have thousands of board feet of reclaimed wood. A kitchen remodel is an incredible opportunity to find reclaimed wood. If someone is throwing out their old cabinets or an old wooden floor, you can easily turn that refuse into beautiful cabinets. Even if the cabinets they’re throwing out don’t fit yours perfectly, they can be shaped and sized to fit.
Wooden floors are a great source of wood for cabinets. If you have wooden floors in your home and you are remodeling, don’t throw out those floors. Keep enough wood to at least clad your old cabinets in new wood. Hardwood flooring planks are perfect rectangles, which makes them very easy to work with for cabinetry.
Also, ask around at hardwood flooring manufacturers and suppliers. They often have odds and ends that come from manufacturing the planks. Those odds and ends might not be usable as standardized flooring planks but they might work to clad an old cabinet in hardwood. That wood is often scarred from sanders or drills; it will have a beautiful distressed look.
Wooden pallets are the holy grail of reclaimed wood, especially if you can find hardwood pallets. Much like wooden planks, they’re made in perfect rectangles that are easy to turn into cabinet doors. If you’re looking for hardwood pallets, look for companies that import heavy items from overseas. Many European manufacturers of heavy freight use hardwood pallets to ship their goods; just be sure to ask before taking pallets from behind a store.