So we have definitely discussed Glass and Mirrors for Cabinets previously, but it has been a REALLY long time and I think it deserves a revisit. Mostly because I have been looking at kitchen renovations lately and feel like tearing out everything in my house now.

But since I don’t REALLY want to do that right now – we can definitely talk about ideas!


Kitchen cabinets make up a LOT of – well everything. Besides counter top and drawer space, cabinets work as main storage in kitchens, and mostly for our dish ware and drinking glasses, as well as our nicer wine glasses and china ware. And in this, I will also lump in counter drawers, because glass can be used there too.

Now, when it comes to your kitchen cabinets, you need to consider whether you want a more open, or solid look. Would you like to brighten an area by utilizing mirrors? Tie in an accent color via back painted glass? How much would you like to obscure your dish ware if at all? All of these questions are what needs to be considered when planning to put glass in your kitchen cabinets. And if you’re unsure now, that’s fine because I’m going to tell you all about the options!

Note: You need to have a Cabinet Maker cut out your doors BEFORE bringing them in to have glass put in them.

Clear Glass

Notice I didn’t say ULTRA clear. Don’t get too dazed though it’s only because of one, ONE, very small specification. Thickness. When it comes to glass for cabinet doors, 1/8” thick is what is used because it’s not very heavy. Heavy glass makes for heavy doors. And with thinner glass, regular clear glass doesn’t look AS green. The thicker glass is, the more it reflects back on itself, causing the true color of the glass to become more prominent. It’s the reason that the edge of really thick regular clear glass tables look so dark green, and the face of the glass has that green to the point of discoloring anything behind it reveal. But with 1/8” glass, there isn’t much to reflect back. The face of the glass doesn’t yield much green, and the edges are hidden anyways in your doors. But fret not, 1/8” Low Iron Ultra Clear is available if it really troubles you.

Clear glass is best used in cabinets that you want to keep feeling light and airy. You’ll easily be able to see all of your treasures and that makes for easy access.

Deco Glass

decorative cabinet glassFor those of us looking for something that adds a little more of a design element – deco glass is your medium. Delta Frost is featured above.

Decorative Textured Cabinet Glass comes in a variety of patterns ranging from nearly clear to completely obscured. Deco glass also helps bring some life and character to your cabinets by adding in just a slight twist in the nature of glass.

In some patterns – literally.

My personal favorite is the Antique pattern. At first glance, it appears to just be clear glass, but the further you get from it, the more distortion becomes apparent. It has thin lines throughout the glass that gives it that light antiqued look.

Now, while we are on the topic of deco glass, I’m going to digress for a moment. Just a moment – I swear!

There is a really cool application for deco glass that you may not be aware of. And while it is too thick and heavy for cabinet doors, it is still a great use of deco glass, and you may have a place for it.

Color Mirrored Deco Glass

I know right!

Perfect for niches or feature backsplashes, color mirrored deco glass creates a dynamic backdrop for – well anything. Made by layering deco glass over colored mirror, reflecting back the textures in deco glass creates various dimensional effects. Playing with depth creates interest, and truly makes these pieces, dare I say artworks, pop. Literally. It’s something else. My personal favorite combo is Delta Frost deco over Blue Mirror.

Antique Mirror

The reason that I specify Antique Mirror over clear mirror is because I associate clear mirror in kitchens with backsplashes (sometimes) and clear mirror in cabinet doors seems to be a BIT much…

But not antique mirror because it has patterns and colors and such that break up reflections!

Antique mirror is a great way of getting the benefits of mirrors without the hard, undisrupted reflections.

Due to their reflective nature of antique mirror, they help to liven and lighten up a space. You also have the opportunity to introduce some form of color, or keep things really sleek and neutral. Antique mirrors are an easy way of creating light and dark contrasts between cabinet and insert, and can add a little bit of flow and movement where normally there is none.

And again, going to digress just for a second here.

You can create your very own Antique Mirror Backsplash with subway tiles! Literally, you can install it yourself.

Link to our shop site HERE!

See – that was short and to the point!

Back Painted Glass

When it comes to glass in kitchens, I absolutely ADORE Back Painted Glass. Especially for backsplashes. But it is a score for cabinets too!

The main reason that I love, love, love, back painted glass in kitchens is their ease of clean. Glass is SO easy to clean.

You don’t really think about cleaning your cabinets too much, but dust, and fine powdery substances like flour, tends to travel. The quick swipe of a rag does the trick just great and you won’t have to worry about a mirror reflecting a smear or, possibly textured on both sides, glass catching any of those particles.

And because we paint our glass by hand here at Builders Glass, it’s all custom. You can pick any color to compliment your cabinets! Want something that matches the color perfectly and gives for that nice glossy look right in the center of your doors? Done. Want a pop of color to create a contrast and a feature color? Also done.

The only thing about back painted glass, and same goes for mirrors now that I’m thinking about it, if your cabinets have cut outs in them, be mindful that the backs of the glass will be visible when the doors are open. Personally, this doesn’t bother me SO much because the outside is what matters – BUT I GET IT!

What may work better is insetting glass or mirror into a depression in your doors so that there is still a wood back and you won’t have to see the “not so glamorous” grey back of mirrors, or un-glossy paint on the back of glass. So if this is the route that you are thinking of going and haven’t cut out your cabinets yet – don’t. Inlaying the glass may be a better look.

Future Blogs

This Blog took a while for me to come up with. I don’t want to keep recycling material over and over again, so if there are any questions you would like answered or topics you want discussed, go ahead and leave me a comment.

And if you have any questions about glass inserts for your cabinet doors, give us a call, or come see us in our showroom and get inspired!