Frequently Asked Questions


I heard that you were more expensive than other local cabinet makers – is that true?

This is a misconception because many do not understand that our pricing includes everything – there are no unexpected surprises. Our estimates include the hardware, crown moldings, baseboards, and finishes as well as the design concepts, meetings and plans. Most people do not realize that most local shops do not include these costs in their estimates. In addition, they do not include the extra accessories to make your drawers and cabinets fit your storage needs. This includes recycling bins, knife drawer inserts, utensil dividers, towel bar pull outs and more.
Many local shops build cabinetry on-site and a separate finisher comes to complete the job. With Rutt, your cabinetry arrives fully finished. We do our finishes in a controlled environment so there is no chance of stray hairs, finger prints, and dirt or dust particles ending up on your cabinets. Plus we follow “green” practices to ensure our products are safe for you and the environment.
Many local shops build the cabinetry but purchase the doors from an outside vendor. We can make any door style (if you can dream it, our craftsmen can build it by hand!), and decorative finishes are our specialty including glazing, distressing, color matching and custom colors.
Finally, our team consists of professional interior designers and certified kitchen designers who understand what questions to ask to make sure your entire space functions as you envision, not just the cabinetry.
So when making a comparison, factor in all of the costs associated with using a local cabinetry maker, our high level of customer satisfaction plus our value-added lifetime warranty on finish and construction, and you will see that we are extremely competitive in our pricing.

How do you work with contractors – do you compete with them?
No, we become part of the team in order to ensure that your project runs smoothly. Sometimes our design team takes the lead on a client project – sometimes it’s the contractor or architect. To us, what’s most important is that we communicate continuously and oversee our responsibilities completely to make sure that we meet our deadlines and deliveries.  You are the priority and we work in the way that is most appropriate for your project.

If we are already working with an interior designer do you design the cabinetry or does our designer?
If someone is already working on your interiors, we will take his or her design direction and create the plans accordingly. We take responsibility for engineering the plans and making sure all measurements are correct and verified. We are ASID and NKBA Industry Partners and have a history of working closely with other design professionals. If you do not have a designer, our designers can assist you with the entire design process.

What do you mean by the fact that Rutt is a “green” company?
So many companies in our industry use this buzz word but few are really practicing what they proclaim. The Kitchen Cabinet Manufacturers Association (KCMA) has developed a holistic program to measure companies’ environmental stewardship (ESP) in 18 different areas. It has set standards that must be achieved and most importantly, it’s a third party certification program that regulates the performance to those standards. We are proud that Rutt has achieved certification under this rigid program and we are able to label every product we produce as “ESP Certified.” To find out more, go to
Rutt has also received the Forest Stewardship Council’s (FSC) Chain of Custody Certification. The FSC has been recognized as a leading third party verification organization that promotes responsible forest management. This certification means that Rutt has met strict tracking requirements for ensuring that our FSC-certified products come from a well-managed forest. You may request that the materials for your cabinetry are FSC-certified. Please allow more time and potential flexibility in material selection, which is based upon market availability. For more information on FSC, go to

What is your standard lead time?

On average it takes about nine weeks from the time an order is placed until delivery of cabinetry.

From start to finish, how long will it take me to have new cabinetry in my house?
An average kitchen remodel will take about 6-9 months from start to finish, but this all depends on a variety of items. We will work with any time frame you have and always push things along wherever possible. Our goal is to help make the overall process as quick and as smooth as we can. The custom design process starts right after you make the decision to work with Rutt of Los Altos and have signed a retainer form. On average a design phase can be completed in as little as 4 weeks. If you have the luxury of time on your side, we will backwards plan from the date cabinets are needed on site and set up appointments to review the design process along the way.

This is a brief outline of the phases for a project:
Design of cabinetry process = 4-8 weeks
Cabinetry production and delivery = 8-10 weeks
Installation of cabinetry = 2 weeks, depending on room size
Finishing touches (countertop, tile work, flooring, etc) = 4-6 weeks
Move in!

How can you work within my budget?
Custom cabinetry is one of the most significant investments you will make for your home and the sky’s the limit when it comes to what you can create. Through smart design and creative solutions, we can work within a given budget for custom cabinetry. We call it value engineering. By altering your design slightly, we may be able to provide you with cabinetry at a cost that is more comfortable without sacrificing the functionality or look that is desired. For example, changing a door style, a finish or a small detail might be the solution that allows the project to best fit within your budget guidelines.

What is the level of experience at Rutt of Los Altos?
Our team consists of educated design professionals who belong to the American Society of Interior Designers and the National Kitchen and Bath Association and most are certified kitchen designers. The designers are led by owner Gina Viscusi Elson, a nationally-recognized professional designer who has designed custom cabinetry for over 15 years. Every order is overseen by co-owner, Christopher Elson who manages quality control, engineering, logistics, operations and customer satisfaction.
The cabinetry engineers and craftsmen at Rutt HandCrafted Cabinetry have been custom cabinet makers for nearly 60 years.

Where are the Rutt craftsmen and where do they make the cabinetry?
Since 1951, the craftsmen of Rutt HandCrafted Cabinetry have been practicing their time-honored trade in the serene Lancaster County Pennsylvania countryside. This is still a peaceful and friendly lifestyle and they still make each one-of-a-kind piece by hand.

What is the warranty?
There is a Lifetime Warranty on the construction and finish of your Rutt cabinetry, virtually unheard of in the marketplace.