6 Things to Consider When Choosing Kitchen Cupboard Handles

Full article with thanks to https://www.houzz.co.uk/magazine/6-things-to-consider-when-choosing-kitchen-cupboard-handles-stsetivw-vs~33101476

Handles are the final touch to kitchen cabinets, whether their style is traditional, contemporary or somewhere in between. They come in all kinds of materials and finishes and can really help to establish the style and mood of the space. But how do you know which handles to choose to suit your cabinets, particularly if you want something a little away from a standard silver knob? And will something more decorative stand the test of time? Read on for the answers to these questions and more…

Quality and functionality
When choosing handles, it’s important to make sure they are good quality and are well designed. Think about how many times you open and close the cabinet doors and drawers in your kitchen. You will want your handles to be as comfortable as they are stylish.

Test out the handles you intend to buy. Hold one against your cabinet doors and check how easy they are to grip and how they feel in your hand. Also ensure the handles have the right grip for those using the kitchen – such as those with bigger hands or older people who may have arthritis in their fingers.

Finally, ask your supplier which material the handles are made from and what warranty they carry.

Think about the overall style and feel you would like to achieve. The handles you choose have a big influence on the overall feel of your kitchen and can tip the style one way or another.

For the purpose of this story, I have broken down kitchen styles into three broad categories: traditional, contemporary and transitional.

Traditional-style cabinets with profiled doors and ornate mouldings are really brought to life when adorned with decorative, old-world style handles like the ones shown here.

If you decide to use a drop handle on your drawers, then remember to select a matching knob to use on your doors.

Similarly, combining a cup handle with a matching knob creates a very sophisticated, yet still traditional, feel.

Using a very simple, streamlined handle on minimalist-style cabinets with flat-fronted doors and drawer fronts invokes a very sleek, contemporary look.

Consider slim rectangular bar handles or softly curved barrel handles with clean lines. Also, look for handles that have flush ends (like the ones pictured here) as opposed to ends that stick out that you can catch your clothes or knees on as you walk around the kitchen.

A Combination
You may not want a completely traditional or contemporary feel in your kitchen – maybe somewhere in between suits your taste and the style of your home better.

These streamlined kitchen cabinets have a very contemporary minimalist feel, but the addition of more old-world style handles adds a traditional touch that ties the kitchen in with the formal dining setting in this home.

Shaker-style cabinets are very versatile and the handles you choose can easily tip the style of these cabinets one way or another.

In this kitchen, the Shaker-style cabinets are very sleek, with clean modern lines. The handles are contemporary looking, but their curved shape adds a softer, more homely touch that perfectly ties in with the more traditional elements of this home – the plaster cornices, timber floors and tongue and groove walls.

Another option is to choose handles that are a similar style and finish as your appliance handles. In this kitchen, the cabinet handles are almost identical to those on the ovens.

The finish
Once you have chosen the style of handles you would like, determining the finish will be a lot easier. Traditional handles, for example, are available in a huge variety of finishes, from stainless steel to brass, pewter and even black.

Consider other feature elements of your kitchen design when choosing the finish (and style) of your handles. These black handles look so sophisticated on the light grey cabinets, and the colour ties in with the black hob as well as the black grout.

In this kitchen, the cabinet handles have a porcelain feature that matches the handles on the sink taps. This really helps to tie the whole look of the kitchen together.

When deciding on a finish for your contemporary-style handles, again consider other elements in the kitchen. Polished chrome designs are very contemporary and stylish, and can be used alongside a polished chrome tap.

Similarly, brushed stainless-steel handles have a very sleek, modern appearance and can be matched to the stainless-steel finish on your appliances or sink.

Have a look at other, more unconventional finishes also – you may be surprised at what you find. These glass knobs create a real wow factor in this very ornate kitchen. Knobs are easily replaced, too, owing to the fact that you only need a screw hole in each door – so don’t be afraid to try something a bit different.

Some handles are available in various lengths. It’s really a personal choice and a matter of taste whether or not you mix handle lengths in your kitchen, however using the same length handle throughout, regardless of the length of the drawers you put them on, will create a less busy, more consistent look in the kitchen.

Try to go for an ‘in-between’ length handle that won’t look too short on long drawers or too long on shorter drawers. If you’re not sure how long is right, ask your kitchen designer or a supplier to suggest a size they would recommend based on the size of the cabinets in your kitchen.

Ask your cabinet-maker/kitchen installer not to put the handles on until all of your cabinetry has been installed. This will give you an opportunity to stand in your new kitchen and hold your handles against the cabinet doors and drawers to try out different positions and heights. The general rule is that handles are placed horizontally on pull-out drawers and vertically on doors.

If you are creating a contemporary, streamlined look in your kitchen you could consider placing the handles horizontally on your doors also – but try out the feel of this first because it doesn’t feel as natural as opening a door with a vertical handle.

Also, make sure the handles are placed in a position where they won’t hit one another when you open your cabinets – this is something your kitchen designer should also consider if you’re adding handles to a new kitchen.

If you don’t want the handles to be too much of a feature in your kitchen then think about just having handles on all your base cabinets and drawers and keeping all your overhead doors free from handles. This is another way to create a less busy, more contemporary feel in your kitchen.

Totally no handles
If you would like your kitchen to be super contemporary and streamlined, consider having no handles at all on your cabinetry. This kitchen has a recessed lip at the top of each door and drawer front, which creates a channel that allows you to open them without handles. Be wary of crumbs and dust gathering in drawer channels like these.

Push-to-open mechanisms (usually drilled into the carcass of your cabinetry) are a very simple and cost-effective way to open cabinet doors without handles.

Full article with thanks to https://www.houzz.co.uk/magazine/6-things-to-consider-when-choosing-kitchen-cupboard-handles-stsetivw-vs~33101476

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