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Tuesday, December 5, 2023

How to Choose Cabinet Hardware?

When we renovate our home and kitchen, we have to make some important decisions. One of them is to choose cabinet hardware. But how do you go about it?

Selecting cabinets is not an easy task. Your cabinet hardware defines the style and aesthetics of your kitchen and your home. The market will offer you with a plethora of options. And you need to find one that meets your requirements.  

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by Max Rahubovskiy at pexels

1. How to Choose Cabinet Hardware?

Cabinet hardware is essential for setting up an efficient kitchen. A well-planned kitchen with excellent cabinets and hardware is the dream of every person who loves cooking at home. Moreover, the style and design of the cabinet and cabinet hardware define the aesthetic of your kitchen. 

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by Curtis Adams at pexels

There are many options for styling your kitchen.  You can seek advice from your internal designer or simply use your imagination. The hardware you choose will depend on the theme of your house. For example, sterling hardware is a good fit for homes with transitional styles. Also, there are many rustic choices available in the market if you choose a rustic design for your home.

Before we head into knowing what is cabinet hardware and how to choose cabinet hardware,  let us look into a few examples of considerations you should keep in mind:-

  • Typically, the cabinet knobs are round. But, these are also available in a broad range of shapes.
  • You will often use knobs and pulls. So, it is important to choose pulls and knobs that are comfortable on your hands.
  • Having a square knob is more likely to scratch you than having a round knob.

Let us now understand what is cabinet hardware and how to choose cabinet hardware.

2. What is Cabinet Hardware and How to Choose Cabinet Hardware?

Cabinet hardware mainly consists of pulls and knobs, which are fixed on drawers and cabinets. The primary function of this cabinet hardware is to assist you in opening cupboards and cabinet drawers.

Knobs and pulls are the two kinds of cabinet hardware. These knobs and pulls come in all sizes and shapes. However, the choice of cabinet hardware can alter the look and theme of your home. Also, you require to pay attention to the quality of these knobs and pulls. A cheaper quality would mean broken knobs and pulls which will turn into irritants later. 

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by Curtis Adams at pexels

A house would look impressive when all the accessories match the intended theme. In simple words, accessories such as curtains, curtain stands, and cabinet hardware can define the aesthetics of your home. 

Cabinet Hardware is often considered as the gems of the kitchen and bathroom. When it comes to styling, and choosing the best cabinets, don’t leave it as an afterthought. It’s the most important thing that will make your kitchen and bathrooms visually appealing.

Also, correctly chosen hardware can give an optimal makeover for your existing cabinets. You can have a theme that looks vivid or subtle. Moreover,  the cabinet hardware is available in many materials, such as glass, leather, metal, and acrylic. 

Let us now look into various types of cabinet hardware.

3. Types of Cabinet Hardware

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by getting Lost Mike at pexels

To design your home, you will need to go through different types of cabinet hardware. Everybody has a distinct and different choice. So, there are numerous choices available in the market when it comes to select cabinet hardware.

There are various phases to select a matching cabinet hardware for your existing furniture. Firstly, you need to select the cabinets. Secondly, material of the cabinet is a major factor that matters. If a material is good, the cabinet will last longer.

So, the material must have a good quality. Additionally, there are various finishes to select that will be applied over the cabinets like nickel, brass, etc.

To decide on how to choose cabinet hardware,  know the different types of hardware in the market. You can find this cabinet hardware made of any material, design, and color. Given below are the commonly used cabinet hardware.

3.1. Pulls

The first cabinet hardware that we can think of is the pulls. Pulls are the fixed attachments connected with doors or drawers, which permit you to open and shut the cabinet. Further, these are featured by mounting at two points on which they get fixed.

The pulls are available in the market in different sizes, shapes, and designs. Many pulls can be grabbed with the entire hand, while some can only be held with a couple of fingers. 

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by AGorohov on unlimphotos.com

Also, these pulls come in different sizes. You can choose the size of your choice. These can vary from one inch or two to up to 30 inches. 

3.1.1. Handle Pulls

The handle pulls are often known as the drawer pulls. They have a bar-like design, which is usually rounds at the edges. It can be attached to the surface of the cabinet from both ends. 

It is easy to find handle pulls in different designs, shapes, and styles. These handle pulls can be matched with the style of your cabinet and hardware. 

Furthermore, a handle pull does require two screws to fix it on either side. You will be required to drill two holes in the cabinet and drawer to install handle pulls. These are not recommended for replacing old handles unless they are of the same size. 

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by Anneleven on unlimphotos.com

3.1.2. Bin Pulls

Bin pulls are vault-shaped handles.  These look like hollow hemispheres. These pulls are also known as cup pulls. Moreover, the bin pulls are easy to hold at the bottom. The alternative name ‘cup pulls’  explains its shape which is enclosed from three of its sides.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by Feverpitched on unlimphotos.com

The beautiful hooded design is available with many different types of attractive decorations. Further, these pulls come in oval, round, rectangular, and square shapes. Typically, the cup pulls also require two screws for setting up like handle pulls.

Mostly, these are preferred drawers. Also known as half-moon pulls, these are distinct as compared to other pulls due to their unique design. Further, mounting screws are hidden in cup pulls which add to the perfect finish.

3.1.3. Edge Pulls

The edge pulls are known as finger pulls. These are regarded as modest and modern-style cabinet hardware. Edge pulls are installed in the cabinet door or a drawer’s edge.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by emtek.com

Usually, it can be gripped with fingers to open and shut cabinets and drawers.  The edge pulls also come in various sizes. You can buy edge pulls of your choice. However,  an overkill or an underestimation can spoil the looks of the cabinet. 

3.1.4. Drop Pulls

Drop pulls are a combination of hanging and fixed installations with a dropped handle. Typically, it is connected to the fronts of the drawers. Meanwhile, these are also used in other cupboards and types of furniture.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by ozaiachin on unlimphotos.com

The purpose of the drop pulls is defined in two ways. Firstly, it works similarly to the door knockers, just grab the hinged part hanging at one end, made with metal. Secondly, it has two hinged end-points made of metal.

Its ability to pull or swing upside and downside makes it different from other pulls. You can use it with its hinged part when you hold it with your hand. These drop pulls match well if you are trying for a vintage or classic theme. 

3.1.5. Finger Pulls

Finger pulls also usually refer to the tab pulls. These are a stylish hardware choice for your cabinets. Further, these pulls are designed in such a way that they can be easily gripped with the fingers. Also, these can be used on cabinet doors or drawers.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by knobs4less.com

3.2. Knobs

Knobs are also attachments to cabinets. But these are connected at just one point to the doors or drawers. These help you to open and shut the doors with just your fingers.

Similarly to pulls, knobs are also available in different sizes, shapes, and materialistic concepts. Their singular fixing point makes them distinctive from other cabinet hardware.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by Quils on unlimphotos.com

From a mushroom to a square, knobs can be purchased in various shapes and designs. However, selecting one perfect knob of a plethora of choices will depend on your personal preference and the theme of the kitchen.

Given below are the most desired types of knobs:

3.2.1. Mushroom Knobs

Mushroom Knobs are exactly shaped as the name suggests. They can be useful in all types of cabinetry. Usually, people use these for the kitchen. The shape of the knob makes it perfect for all kinds of themes.  You may have to decide on the color of the knob.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by etsy.com

3.2.2. Rectangular or Square Knobs

Homes packed with organic and curved factors look more decent with square or rectangular knobs. Square and rectangular knobs are usually easier to grip around than the oval or rounded knobs.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by homedepot.com

These are classy knobs and go well with a classy theme.  You can choose a silver knob for a black cabinet to match and give contrast.  These are available in different materials as well.

3.2.3. Oval or Round Knobs

Oval and round knobs are a good fit for spaces with more edgy features. Beautiful choices in oval and round knobs will help you select one best for aesthetics.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by trgowanlock on unlimphotos.com

Using a gold-finished oval knob can add up more contrast to a white-featured kitchen. Also, using a warm wooden knob can alleviate an industrial space. 

3.2.4. Cylindrical Knobs – How to Choose Cabinet Hardware?

Usually, the cylindrical knobs are shaped like a cylinder or a tube. This kind of knob is a perfect option for futuristic and contemporary homes. Also, you can find a few options which are finger-friendly and easy to grip.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by etsy.com

3.2.5. Bar Knobs

Bar knobs are the shorter varieties of drawer handles or pulls. However, you may not be able to grab them with the entire hand due to their size length.  how to choose cabinet hardware

Image by Amazon. in

3.2.6. Conical Knobs

Conical knobs resemble the shape of an hourglass. It is one of the most preferred types of knobs and will look good on your kitchen cabinets. These knobs can give your kitchen an authentic and modern look as well.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by thehandlestudio.co.uk

3.3. Cremone Bolts

Usually, the Cremone bolts are found on framed aperture windows or French doors. The ceremony bolts are also used in bathroom and kitchen cabinets. Further, these bolts are also commonly known as surface bolts.

The Cremone Bolt features a lever handle or a knob, which is fixed to a lower and upper rod. The rods slide into or out of their nooks depending on the way the handle is turned. The sockets are tracked on the lower and upper plank.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by etsy.com

Further, these bolts are also available with a handle and can be locked in one go. 

3.4. Backplates – How to Choose Cabinet Hardware?

Backplates are another cabinet hardware that requires consideration. These are the decorative ornaments made with metal, which are mounted on the cabinet drawer or door surface. These are meant to be fixed beneath a pull or a knob as an ornamental piece.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by elenthewise on unlimphotos.com

When attached with either the knob or pull, it visually looks like a single decorative piece. This elevates the look of even simple cabinet hardware.

4. How to Choose Cabinet Pulls & Knobs?

Beauty and functioning are two features of pulls and knobs. Despite their designs and styles, the decision of choosing the right cabinet pulls and knobs is a difficult task. While the modern and unique styling attracts some people,  others love to maintain the vintage and royal appeal of their kitchen. 

But, selecting merely based on beauty and styling isn’t enough. You will require more concentration and knowledge to choose the best cabinet pulls and knobs suitable for your kitchen.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by Olesha on unlimphotos.com

 So, how are you going to make your selection? What should you consider before finalizing the one for your kitchen? Given below are the few considerations  you may think about before selecting the best one for your house:

4.1. Decide What You Want – How to Choose Cabinet Hardware?

There are no strict rules for choosing a cabinet hardware of your choice. You can choose either a pull and a knob or both. However, the preference is usually given to pulls for drawers and knobs for doors.

Besides, pulls are a better option for the doors like pantry or pull-out doors. Using a pull to open a drawer is more comfortable than a knob.

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Another reason for the above recommendation is that sometimes drawers become heavy due to the weight of pans, dishes, and many other things. It will become much easier to pull out with the help of a hand instead of fingers.

Further, you can also choose either only pulls or only knobs. Knobs were common in the traditional kitchen when a variety of cabinet hardware was limited in those days. Meanwhile, the pulls give a modern look to your drawers. 

Once you finalize the type of pulls, you must now consider the type of mounting. Horizontal pulls are often used for drawers, and vertical pulls for doors.   

4.2. Decide the Shape You Want

Deciding the shape of cabinet hardware is a matter of styling. Firstly, you need to observe the style of your cabinets, whether they have horizontal or vertical patterns. The shape of the cabinet hardware thereafter,  can be squares and rounds.

Select a cabinet hardware that matches your cabinet patterns well. Using a flat panel, shaker, or other modified shaker doors is a good match with square cabinet styling. With the use of square contours, you can also get a vibe of round styling. These are good to provide a contemporary look.

How to Install Cabinet Door and Drawer Handles/Knobs/Pulls

Furthermore, traditional recessed panel doors raised panel doors, and pillow-top doors follow the curved cabinet styles. Usually, the curved style hardware has more detailing and smooth edges. These are good to provide a transitional and traditional look.

4.3. Contemplate Finishing

People often prefer brushed or chrome nickel finishing. There are plenty of finishing choices available to add grace to your kitchen and home. However, it’s better to choose a finish that complements the rest of the design.

Many finishes complement the brushed stainless faucet and brushed nickel faucet. These finishes include satin brass, antique pewter, aluminum, bronze, rust, oil-rubbed bronze, and black matte.

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However, finishes that will complement chrome faucets are confined. These finishes include clear glass, pewter, white, dark bronze, or black. So, finishing is also one of the important parts of the process of choosing cabinet hardware.

4.4. Consider Your Comfort

It’s better to try both knobs and pulls before finalizing them for drawers or doors. What makes you feel more comfortable matters more. You should touch and feel it thoroughly. The hardware should make you feel comfortable and fit your hand size.

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Also, you can check for pointy ridges or edges that may pressed on your fingers. It is an important thing to check because it may either end up annoying you if not hurting you with its use. 

The capital economy has become stringent and competitive. Many companies like Top Knobs will send you a free sample to check. However, you will be required to pay them the shipping charges. Notwithstanding,  you will get an idea of what to choose.

4.5. Analyze the Cost – How to Choose Cabinet Hardware?

We already know that we get what we pay for. Many companies promote inexpensive brands, but their finishes look cheap. So, it’s better to look for the cabinet hardware in your local cabinet showrooms.

They can promote a wide variety of products and best brands as well.  A salesperson can also assist you in making a decision. Usually, a good cost for knobs ranges from $6 to $10 and $7 to $12 for the pulls, which is a bit higher than knobs.

Cabinet Knobs and Pulls - 8 IMPORTANT installing Tips

Further, the cost of the cabinet hardware depends on the design and finishing. If you select bronze or stainless steel, it can cost more than a plastic or metallic one. Also, longer pulls will be more costly than the smaller ones. 

Finally, you will need to order a few extras of cabinet hardware you choose. This is to cater for any breakage while fitting or for future replacement. 

5. Cabinet Door Hinges – How to Choose Cabinet Hardware?

You will be required to buy hinges when the cabinet doors are attached to the frames. You will surprised to know that there are numerous options in hinges too. Also, a cabinet can use only one specific type of hinge.

However, most of the hinges are miniature versions of exterior and interior door hinges. Given below are the various kinds of hinges that you can use as per your choice for your cabinets. 

5.1. Butt Hinge

The butt hinge is the most commonly used. It features a pair of leaves which are connected by a middle pin. One leaf is connected to the inside frame of the cabinet. Meanwhile, the other leaf is connected to the backside of the door.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by cbjltd.co.uk

The joint of this hinge between the door and cabinet frame will be visible from the outside when the door is closed. 

5.2. Frameless Hinge

A frameless hinge almost works like a Face-Frame hinge. But, unlike Face-Frame hinges,  it can be attached to any kind of cabinet like a face frame or inset.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by cbjltd.co.uk

The frameless hinge is an excellent choice for heavy-weighted doors. Also, it’s better than the butt hinge as it won’t be visible from any side when the cabinet is closed.   

5.3. Inset Hinge – How to Choose Cabinet Hardware?

An Inset hinge is attached at the outward part of a cabinet by a slender bracket. Furthermore, a single leaf is encased behind the door from that bracket. And fixes with its back.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by hardwarehut.com

Nevertheless, the bracket here is entirely visible. So it is designed to cater to a stylish and elegant finish. Also, it can feature an embellishing touch. 

5.4. Strap Hinge

Usually, a strap hinge is also known as a T-hinge. It consists of a long and slender leaf, which is further fixed with a cabinet door. Further, this leaf rotates from the second leaf, which is mounted with the frame of the cabinet.

5.5. Overlay Hinge

If the door is mounted at the front of the cabinet’s face, overlay hinges are most suitable instead of attaching within the frame. Further, this type of hinge can also be used as a complete overlay or half overlay.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by hardwarehut.com

Moreover, when the door conceals the entire cabinet’s face, a full overlay hinge will be needed. While, when the two doors share a slender division, only a half overlay hinge will be required. Also, it allows a single door to be opened or closed without disturbing the other door.

5.6. Wrap-Around Hinge – How to Choose Cabinet Hardware?

This type of hinge consists of a leaf that is fixed to the backside of the door. Meanwhile, the second leaf is covered around the frame of the cabinet and into the cabinet as well. However, it follows almost the same concept as a butt hinge.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by hardwarehut.com

It can handle more heavy doors, unlike a butt hinge. Also, this gives a strong finish to the cabinets. However, the spinning point of the hinge will be seen from the outwards, when the door is closed. So, it’s better to find a supportive finish.

5.7. Offset Hinge – How to Choose Cabinet Hardware?

These are more like the inset hinges. But, instead of the leaf, which is fixed to the back of the door, it connects to the frontside and stretches out. In short, both the leaf and the bracket of the door will be visible, when the door is closed.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by cbjltd.co.uk

Due to this reason, the offset hinges come in a wide variety of shapes, materials, colors, and sizes. So, it can complement your cabinet and door well.

5.8. Invisible Hinge

The invisible hinge is often known as a concealed hinge. It is a small hinge, which is fully hidden when the door is shut.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by mccoymart.com

Further, each hinge’s side is intersected with the door’s edge and the frame as well. So, you will be able to see only a tiny partial part of the hinge only when the door is open. 

5.9. Flush Hinge – How to Choose Cabinet Hardware?

A flush hinge looks like a regular standard butt hinge. Also, it is attached in the same manner as a butt hinge. So, what’s the difference? The difference between a flush and a butt hinge is it occupies less space than a butt hinge.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by hardwarehut.com
how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by hardwarehut.com

Also, when the door is closed, the leaf, which is fixed to the door, tucks into the other leaf, which is fixed to the frame. The outcome is a little gap between the frame and the door. Further, it provides a decent and clean look.

5.10. Face-Frame Hinge

These types of hinges are widely used. It is mostly used for those cabinets, which have frames around their openings. This is called a face frame.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by hardwarehut.com

Further, one side is attached to the frame of the face, while the other is fixed to the cabinet’s back. Also, when the door is shut, it won’t be visible from the outwards.

So, there is no need to find a complementary or a particular finish.

5.11. Soft & Self-Closing Hinges

Soft-closing and self-closing a features of this hinge as its name suggests. With this technology, these types of hinges prevent the slamming shut of the doors when the doors are closed.

how to choose cabinet hardware
Image by mccoymart.com

In addition, it protects the frame and ensures a smooth and silent closing operation. This is an amazing and classic feature. So, make sure to look for this feature in the hinges you’re going to use for your cabinets.

6. Finishes of Cabinet Hardware – How to Choose Cabinet Hardware? 

There are many finishes available in the market. So,  how to choose cabinet hardware finishes?  You need to find the best finish that goes well with your cabinet’s designs and styles. It should complement the styling of your cabinets and add contrast to your decor. Let’s look into the several common and elegant finishes:

  • Oil Rubbed Bronze
  • Chrome
  • Pewter
  • Nickel
  • Polished Brass
  • Rose Gold
  • Black
  • Antique Brass
  • Polished Nickel
  • Brushed Nickel
  • Stainless Steel
  • Satin Nickel
  • Matte Black

You must remember that there are plenty of options to choose from.  But your decision must keep in line with the theme as well as the budget you have decided on. An over-expenditure on the cabinet hardware can adversely affect  the quality of the cabinets being selected.

7. Conclusions – How to Choose Cabinet Hardware? 

From picking up the wall paints to selecting beautiful lights, a house building is full of major decisions that the owner has to make. Designing is the last part of finishing the detailing of the house.

But, the designing part is hard to remember and not easy to deal with. Also, the detailing of hardware usually becomes an afterthought. Yet, choosing a tiny door knob and right pulls can lead to an astonishing visual impact. So,  how to choose cabinet hardware? 

One must remember the ease and comfort while selecting the cabinet hardware. There are plenty of choices for selecting cabinet ornaments. Also, these can be settled with every piece of furniture that a house can have.

The most important thing is to select them accordingly. Cabinet hardware is a good fit for the latest design kitchen, or bathroom remodeling, or you simply want to replace your furniture with a brand new design.

Above mentioned are the chief cabinet hardware styles. You can select the best suited style for your home.

Cabinet hardware can be used anywhere you want in your house. Just make sure everything is perfectly matched with the furniture and other ornaments in the house.


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