Thursday, June 16, 2011

"What Were They Thinking Thursday!!?? - Kitchen Cabinet Hardware

Cabinet hardware is like the jewelry you put on your kitchen. It can be really fabulous and add to the overall look and feel or feel truly horrendous. 

This kitchen is in major need of some jewelry!


Cabinet hardware is also one of the easiest things you can do to update your kitchen or just get a fresh new look. 
Who has a kitchen with these 70's pulls? 



Not only is updating your hardware important but also having them in the right location. There is basically three types of hardware.


 knobs




pulls 

 


cup pulls


Each one has it's place on the cabinet and in the kitchen. I personally like it when you mix it up in a kitchen. You don't have to have all knobs or all pulls and should definitely not have all cup pulls. That would just overwhelm a kitchen and the cup pulls really need to stay on the drawers, not the cabinets. 

I love this mix of hardware! They have all three types!


This kitchen is really pretty but I don't like all the tiny knobs. I would've liked to see some pulls and I think the knobs are under-scaled for the space. 


A good mix and good hardware placement.


Love this!!!


Again, all knobs! It doesn't look bad but it just doesn't look it's best. 


This hardware just looks bad. The hanging pulls are overwhelming the kitchen. They are hanging too low on those drawers. I also don't like the painted wood knobs mixed with those pulls. I don't think the two go together. 


Another thing to try to stay away from in the kitchen is themed hardware. These look better in a small bathroom or on a piece of furniture, not over your entire kitchen!  Just a few can make a statement.




Just a bit too much


And finally, where to place the hardware on the cabinet can be tricky. Function is very important. When placing a hardware on a cabinet, the farther away from the hinge the easier it will be to open because it creates more leverage. In other words, don't put a knob or pull in the center of the cabinet door. 

There are always exceptions and this are pull out drawers not cabinets.

Here is an example of good hardware placement. The knobs on the upper cabinets are easy to reach and look good. The drawer pulls are also in a functional spot. However the pulls on the lower drawer really should be mounted on the stile instead of the middle.  This way you don't have to bend down so far.s

These pulls look a little low on this cabinet. If you have a pull on the lower cabinets, you should put it a little higher so it's easier to reach. 


Again, I think these knobs need to move up on the cabinet. Not to mention they are ugly and this kitchen needs to be dressed up with some better looking hardware!


This hardware is way to big for these small drawers!  but what a cool way to use the corner!


Why are those knobs in the center of the cabinet! Hard to reach and not good for opening and closing the cabinet!



Great looking hardware!


A minimalist approach, not every kitchen needs to be dressed up with some jewelry.




Really pretty kitchen and breaking the hardware rules with those pulls on the middle of the upper cabinets. Very cool looking but not as functional as placing in the corner. I love it though!


One of my biggest pet peeves with kitchen cabinets are the corners! I went and looked at house for sale a while back and they had drawers in the lower corner. Well, that is a big no no. You can't open the drawer because the hardware of the perpendicular drawer is sticking out. So these people had just decided to cut that knob off! What were they thinking!!! Or more importantly, what was the builder thinking!!!! Function function function, that is what we get paid for!

Here are some corner cabinet alternatives:


This is a cool idea when done right, but when not it ends up looking like this:

 



 And finally, let's end with just some pretty kitchens with fabulous hardware:

















~Jessica

50 comments:

Kitchen Cabinet Repair said...

Thank you for sharing these pictures of cabinet hardware! Some look really great, others not so great. But I do love the corner drawer cabinets! They are unique!

Short Hills NJ Kitchen Contractor said...

Great photos! Thank you for sharing this article!

Jules said...

Thanks for the photos. What do you think about changing some knobs with nice glass intermix texture I have pulls and knobs.

Studio B Designs said...

Yes- mixing it up is a great idea! It gives your space some detail.

Anonymous said...

Lots of great photos and ideas to help me. Now need to figure out if i like the placement of handles in the middle of the drawer (will require buying longer bolts) or a bit higher. Is there a right or wrong on that?

Studio B Designs said...

There is no real right or wrong. It all depends on the type of cabinet knob you choose which could dictate placement. Send a picture and i will give you my 2cents on placement!

Anonymous said...

I have the exact same question. I have knobs to place on lower drawers and don't know if we should position in the middle and get longer screws, or higher on the drawer. All my cabinets are knobs, but they are a specialty knob. They are Petosky stone, round pulls. Cherry cabinets, mix of flat slab and shaker style. Shaker sytle have to go in the center, slabs we could choose. Would it not look right to have a mix of placement on lower drawers?

Studio B Designs said...

Sorry for the delayed response. You can mix the placement, keep in mind the higher you place the knob on the lower cabinets the easier you will be able to reach down and open.

Anonymous said...

We like the idea of having a combination of three: knobs, pulls, clamshells as in your first picture example. But my wife likes the drawer pulls on the top drawers and clamshells on the lower drawers - I prefer the reverse, as in the picture. Any thoughts?
Also, I think to go to 4 combinations - knobs, clamshells and two sizes of same design pulls is too much - agree or disagree?
Great site - one of few that helps you think through the process visually.

Studio B Designs said...

It is more typical to put the clamshells on the upper drawers and that's due to function. It's easier to put your hand under the clamshell to open on top drawers. If you put them on lower drawers you will have to bend over more or squat down to open them where you can bend over less if you can slide your hand down through a pull to open. I don't think having two sizes of pulls is too much a larger drawer should dictate a larger or longer pull or if you stick to one size you may need two. Hope this helps!! ~Brandy

Katie said...

Great post! I have a question about placement of knobs on lower cabinets in a bathroom vanity. I'd love to e-mail you a pic for advice, but I can't seem to find an e-mail address on your website? Mine is karusak@hotmail.com Thanks!

Anonymous said...

I have new cabinets of quarter-sawed oak in a mission style. I chose a finger pull for the upper cabinets, large cup pull for drawers, bar pull for corner lazy susan and pantry cabinets, and knobs for lower cabinets. All are from same design in antique oil rubbed bronze with a neat little leaf design on them (amerlok). My husband thinks we should put the finger pulls on the lower cabinets too because the knobs make too much variety, but I prefer the knobs on the lower cabinets as they are easier to grasp from a standing position reaching to a lower position. All the same hardware is being used throughout the house in the cabinetry. I was beginning to wonder if I was right, but after perusing your site, I believe I am fine in my decision...variety, if done tastefully is good!

Studio B Designs said...

Yes, I agree with you. The knobs are easier to use. It sounds like it will be a beautiful kitchen!

art2di4 said...

what do you think about satin nickel vs chrome or stainless?

Studio B Designs said...

That depends on the look of the kitchen you want. Satin Nickel is a little darker than Satin Stainless. Chrome is shiny and can show scratches very easily. If you want it to look good without much maintenance, I would go with stainless or nickel.

Anonymous said...

Brandy,
I was Anonymous on June 27th. We went with 4 different hardware pieces: knobs; clamshells; and two sizes of pulls. The pulls were used on upper drawers and broom closet doors depending on door size. We follow a 'form follows function philosophy' because we liked being able to hang a dish towel on the draw pulls - not possible on the clamshells. So we put pulls on the top drawers and clams on the bank below.
We also have one bank of drawers that is not central to the kitchen that we made all clamshells (2 per drawer) and it adds a certain 'mass' to the cluster. Anyway we love it - not sure how to send you pictures for the 'what were they thinking' section. Finally, want to thank you for expanding what we were thinking - we ended up with higher quality hardware with placements that may not be standard but that we think work and that we love. Great site.

Studio B Designs said...

Very glad you like the way it turned out, that's all that counts! ~brandy

Anonymous said...

What do you think about glass knobs for the cabinets that have clear seedy glass panels and nickel for the rest of the cabinets and drawers?

Studio B Designs said...

I would say yes!

Anonymous said...

This is a really great web site. Lots of good illustrations, for one thing. Learned my husband was right after all!

Anonymous said...

If I use pulls on the drawers (4) and knobs on the cabinets (16), can I use a pull on a tall cabinet (like a broom closet) instead of a knob? I think it would br easier to open. Thank you.

Studio B Designs said...

Absolutely

Anonymous said...

I am doing a kitchen remodel with new cabinets. I will have dark transitional style cabinets and I would like satin nickel cup pulls on drawers and knobs on cabinets. I will have some 30" drawers, some 21", some 18" and possibly even four 15" drawers on a wet bar. I was wondering if 3 3/8" Amerock cup pulls would work on all size drawers in the center, or would those look too big on the smaller drawers. Thanks for your help. The blog is great!

Studio B Designs said...

Yes it's a great size!

Anonymous said...

Thank you Studio B. How about combining the amerock allison cup pulls bp53010g10 for drawers with the blackrock flat knob bp55270g10 for the cabinets? Is flat knob too modern looking for the cup pull?

Studio B Designs said...

They compliment each other nicely! Not too modern and not too traditional.

Anonymous said...

Thanks again, Studio B. I think it will look great.

Anonymous said...

My cabinets are fairly new (only 6 years old). but I want to replace the hardware. The problem is that we installed pulls on the cabinet doors, but now I want knobs. How can I do this? There will be 2 holes that will need to be covered/filled because the knobs will go in a different place than one of the current two pull holes. What can I do??

Studio B Designs said...

Are they stained cabinets or painted?

Anonymous said...

They are stained.

Anonymous said...

I can probably use the lower hole for the knob, but that leaves me with one hole to fill.

Studio B Designs said...

Unfortunately, since your cabinets are stained you need to use a pull and not a knob. It would be very difficult to disguise the hole. You would have to refinish the cabinets or paint them to hide it.

Anonymous said...

:( Ok, thanks.

Anonymous said...

The style of our kitchen is contemporary with white painted cabinetry on the perimeter. The kitchen island is stained white oak. Would you suggest the hardware on the island match the perimeter cabinetry or be completely different? Thank you.

Studio B Designs said...

You can match the hardware but it would be much cooler if it didn't!

Jayden Eden said...

Wow some of these are really cool. I would love to have some newer kitchen cabinets in Toronto that are within my budget. Thank you for this post.

Anonymous said...

I've searched every subject I can think of trying to find the maker of the example you use for "Pulls" above. Can you tell me who makes them and if they are still available? Thank you of your help.

Studio B Designs said...

Which one?

Anonymous said...

The "Pulls" image at the beginning where examples are given of the three types of hardware. It looks like a rough cast stainless piece. Thanks.

Studio B Designs said...

pottery barn

Anonymous said...

Excellent. Thank you very much.

Winnie said...

Help please! White Shaker kitchen - wanting to use satin chrome mushroom knobs for doors and satin chrome cup pulls for drawers which I think will work fine.... but what to do for the cupboard door hiding the dishwasher - which opens downwards? Cup pull in the top middle (?) but all other doors (which open left or right) will have knobs - will that look odd?

Studio B Designs said...

no not at all, go for it!

Anonymous said...

I have wood cabinets with a yellow under tone. At the moment my fridge is white and dish washer is white. My Microwave is black. I would really like to use brass knobs and pulls. What do you think?

Studio B Designs said...

I might have to see a picture of your cabinets to properly comment.

Anonymous said...

I have dark cabinets and floors with tannish granite. Love the cup pulls and simple knobs but will stainless look pulls look weird with all the dark in there? Worried they will stand out too much against such dark. Appliances are stainless. What are your thoughts?

Studio B Designs said...

Not at all- Stainless or brushed nickel will look great on dark cabinets tying in the stainless appliances.

Anonymous said...

how do you install a cabinet knob when the cabinet area has a curved surface - not a flat area for the knob/screw

Julie said...

My question is a continual topic of debate within my family. I am painting my well-constructed but very 80s flat oak kitchen cabinets. They have no hardware currently, only the finger-pull "gutter" that is part of the door. It is a very big kitchen, and with so many flat-front cabinets, I really would like to put black hardware on them to add some interest, but my husband thinks it will look strange/redundant since the finger-pull part isn't going away. Advice? My only other idea was to do black strap-hinges, but not sure I want too much of a country/rustic theme. Thanks!!

Studio B Designs said...

Julie - What look are you going for? If you can't see the finger pulls from the front you can definitely install pulls. If you cabinets are white, black might be too much of a contrast but that depends on the style of the kitchen.

on an early question that I must have missed in regards to a curved surface. You would install the same as you do on a flat surface however avoid knobs that have a backplate.

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