A recent question from one of our customers was “I keep hearing an in-frame kitchen mentioned a lot but don’t fully understand them. Can you help explain what makes inframe kitchens different to normal ones?”

Well, the article below will answer this question and more in great detail, so you’ll be an in-frame kitchen expert in no time at all.

The in-frame kitchen style

A popular style of kitchen that we produce is called an in-frame kitchen and gives a very unique look to your kitchen. An in-frame kitchen is where a frame is attached to the front edge of a kitchen unit and the doors are then placed inside the 36mm frame so that they open within it. This is a feature of traditional cabinetry that has become extremely popular again in recent years.

In-frame unit open door

Special hinges & drawer mechanisms

To allow the doors and drawer fronts to open within the frames, the units are fitted with special hinges & drawer mechanisms to allow this to happen. Basically, the special mechanisms are larger and are pushed away from the sides of the kitchen units more, so that they can reach the slightly smaller doors and drawer fronts.

In-frame soft close mechanism

In-frame drawer mechanism

How much smaller is the opening to the in-frame kitchen unit?

The frame of an in-frame kitchen is 36mm wide but as the unit sides are 18mm thick, only 18mm of space on each side and the top of the unit is lost from the opening aperture, as the frame is stuck onto the 18mm edges of the unit. The in-frame part at the bottom of the unit drops down slightly to create an unobstructed opening, see the images below.

In-frame bottom drops

In-frame door opens bottom frame dropped

How much smaller are the in-frame kitchen drawers?

As there is a frame around the drawers, the actual drawer has to be a little thinner to fit inside, 40mm thinner to be exact.

In-frame drawer

See the examples below to see the actual sizes of the drawers.

  • Standard 600mm wide drawer – 550mm outer measurement, 520mm inner measurement of usable space.
  • In-frame 600mm wide drawer – 510mm outer measurement, 480mm inner measurement of usable space.
  • Standard 500mm wide drawer – 450mm outer measurement, 420mm inner measurement of usable space.
  • In-frame 500mm wide drawer – 410mm outer measurement, 380mm inner measurement of usable space.

Do units with wireworks and appliance doors have an in-frame kitchen door?

To allow wireworks to open properly and appliance doors to open the appliance, a combination door is provided. This is the frame part and the door made into a 1 piece door. You still get the same great effect all around the kitchen and it’s unnoticeable that the door/frame is constructed slightly differently.

In-frame 150mm pullout wirework-unit


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10 thoughts on “What is an in-frame kitchen?”
  • Jonathan says:

    Hi there,
    Is there a reason why the door for the corner walk in larder can’t be fixed as you do with appliances for a Helmsley kitchen? If not, what would you suggest as I want the Helmsley cornflower blue and a corner walk in larder.


    July 22, 2018 at 5:52 pm
    • Diy Kitchens says:

      Hi Jonathan, there isn’t a reason why the door for the corner walk in larder can’t be fixed as this is something we can supply with a surcharge. A combination door will be provided. This is the frame part and the door made into a 1 piece door. You still get the same great effect all around the kitchen and it’s unnoticeable that the door/frame is constructed slightly differently. Please ring the sales office on 01977 608418 if you need any further advice on this.

      July 23, 2018 at 1:35 pm
  • R.oneva says:

    Hi there,

    Hope you had a good holiday.
    I was wandering if we need extra base corner post for an iframe kitchen at all.
    Also is soft closing included in the Helmsley style.

    Thank you
    Kind regards

    December 27, 2017 at 2:55 pm
    • Diy Kitchens says:

      Hi, yes, corner posts should be used with inframe kitchens. This enables you to open and shut the doors without clashing. Soft close hinges and runners do come included within the inframe kitchens.

      January 4, 2018 at 7:39 am
  • Helen says:

    Is it possible to have a tall horizontal corner unit in any of the in frame kitchens?

    December 18, 2017 at 10:32 pm
    • Diy Kitchens says:

      Hi, sorry but the inframe ranges are the only ones where the tall corner units aren’t available.

      December 19, 2017 at 11:43 am
  • Brid-Aine Parnell says:

    Why is there such a reduction in the types of units available for in-frame kitchens? There are far fewer open shelving options and wire pull out options.

    October 10, 2017 at 7:39 pm
    • Diy Kitchens says:

      Hi, with the inframe kitchen range the frame of the door is attached to the unit, which then makes the internal gap smaller and does not accommodate a lot of mechanisms. Such as when using a tall larder unit, you are unable to use the internal drawers as the frame would obstruct the drawers from opening.

      We are able to supply the open base units in any kitchen range in most sizes, if you do not see this available on our website you will just need to get in touch with us and we are then able to add this to your shopping cart for you.

      October 11, 2017 at 3:43 pm
  • Jack says:

    An in-frame kitchen wall unit has the frame lower at the bottom, so that protrudes lower than the bottom of the unit. Is it still possible to put lighting pelmet on these in-frame wall units because of this?

    September 14, 2017 at 6:18 pm
    • Diy Kitchens says:

      Hi, lighting pelmet can still be used but it has to be recessed back to carcase.

      September 14, 2017 at 6:19 pm
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