Choosing Kitchen Cabinet Hardware

We remodeled our kitchen five years ago, and I recall the initial difficulty of choosing the hardware for the space.  In the end, I chose knobs and pulls from three different suppliers and even though they are slightly different styles, they all work together because they share the same finish.

Kitchen cabinets rarely come with pulls or knobs so it’s a big decision left to the homeowner to choose a style and finish that works with the space.  A reader recently wrote to me asking about the process of choosing kitchen cabinet hardware.  Here are a few tips for making the final choice.

Contemporary kitchens look best with streamlined pulls, and sleek tubular or rectangular options are a perfect complement for this modern style.


contemporary kitchen pulls bhg


contemporary kitchen sleek pulls bhg


Old World inspired hardware works well in traditional or European style kitchens.


traditional kitchen and hardware bhg

It’s important to consider the finishes on the light fixtures and appliances in the space.  There’s no need to match every finish, you can mix chrome with brushed nickel, or oil rubbed bronze with brass, just be sure the finishes will complement each other.  With white kitchen cabinets, the good news is that any of the available finishes for knobs and pulls will always look great!


satin nickel pendants and chrome pulls bhg

 matching sheens in hardware and fixtures bhg

Glass knobs are an often overlooked but stylish choice.  If you’re seeking to inject a dose of glamour in a kitchen, glass knobs are a classic option that also provide a little sparkle or playful color.


colored kitchen knobs bhg


glass knobs on black cabinets bhg


With painted cabinets, just about any finish on hardware will look right.  Oil rubbed bronze, pewter, brushed nickel, and chrome are all classic finishes for colorful kitchen cabinets.


painted blue cabinets orb hardware bhg


green cabinets nickel pulls bhg


The same is true for wood cabinets as well.  Choose pewter or chrome, oil rubbed bronze or nickel, even brass is making a comeback as a choice for kitchen hardware.

wood cabinets brushed pulls bhg


One no fail solution is to coordinate the finish on the hardware with the finish on the appliances.  Oil rubbed bronze or black knobs look fantastic with black appliances just as brushed nickel pulls work perfectly with stainless steel appliances.

It’s perfectly fine to mix styles of hardware too, and in those circumstances you can’t go wrong when you keep the finishes consistent.  In this classic kitchen, brushed nickel bin pulls on drawers are mixed with sleek contemporary pulls on the refrigerator panels.

 bin and sleek pulls classic cottage kitchen bhg


If cabinet hinges are exposed, your hardware should share the same finish to keep the look cohesive.


blue and red kitchen bhg


Consider purchasing knobs that feel good to the touch since you’ll be pulling on them several times a day.  If the pull or knob feels weak, rough, or uncomfortable, opt for smoother or more sturdy selections.


painted yellow cabinet orb hardware bhg


It’s safe to match your hardware with the faucet or light fixtures, but these days we are seeing more and more the mixing of different finishes in modern kitchens.   Below, the homeowner has selected brass sconces with black hardware and chrome barstools and it all works!


mixed hardware finishes bhg


A brushed nickel faucet and pulls are paired with oil rubbed bronze light fixtures in this fresh kitchen space.


mixed finishes on hardware and lighting bhg

A chrome faucet mixes with black pulls and bronze brackets in this contemporary kitchen with touches of traditional.

mixed hardware in kitchen bhg

When hunting for hardware for your kitchen, the most important thing is to make choices that work with the style of your space, the appliances and fixtures, and to make selections that you will love for years to come.

What was the process you went through when choosing hardware for your kitchen?




48 Responses to “ Choosing Kitchen Cabinet Hardware ”

  1. Thank for addressing the “knob” situation. I was the reader who requested this. I’d just finished painting all my furniture white and needed to replace the hardware on each piece. I ended up with handmade square glass knobs for the end tables, porcelain handles and knobs on the desk with an opal finish and polished chrome handles for the dresser.

  2. P.S.: I found the glass knobs on Etsy and they are gorgeous and arrived quickly and in tact. The others from online. I’m extremely happy with the products I received but the delivery process was not something I’d ever be willing to go through again. Sent to the wrong address (Like the wrong PROVINCE) and broken when it finally arrived.

  3. Thanks so much for sharing your experience Jessie!

  4. [...] Read the full article here: Choosing Kitchen Cabinet Hardware [...]

  5. We are considering buying a new home and the cabinets are white with brush oil bronze hardware. All of the the fixtures in the home (including hinges) are brushed oil bronze. The appliances are black and look great in the space. Not something I originally would have picked but I really do love how it all goes together. ….However we JUST bought new stainless steel for our current house and was thinking about taking them with us instead…How do you think they would look? Your thoughts, please???? Thanks Kate!

  6. Relatively interesting article, but what a royal pain to try and read it!!! Three times it blocked out to do some kind of survey. You require me to view a clip in flash. Well, I have an iPad and it does not do flash!!! What a disservice to your customers!!! The name Better Homes and Gardens has gone down several notches after this experience! If your goal is to frustrate people, you have succeeded!!!!!

  7. So sorry for your frustration Ted, I’ll pass along your comments to the staff, thanks you for sharing.

  8. what do you think about glass knobs for our kitchen cabinets that have the clear seedy glass and nickel everywhere else?

  9. We are keeping our 20 yr old kitchen cabinets. They are a light wood plain flat doors. We want to update the knobs on the doors and drawers. Getting stainless appliances and uba tuba granite countertops.
    We know that we should get brushed nickel knobs but the shape and style are driving us crazy. Any suggestions?

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  11. Your blog presentation is wonderful. Thank you!! If you are searching for online kitchen cabinet hardware, so you can also visit Antique Hardware.

  12. The most important thing to consider in choosing pulls is how they help you open the drawer or cabinet. To open a large, heavy drawer you need to consider the size and condition of your hand. If you have week or arthritic hands you want to be sure you can get a good grip on the handle. You will need more that fingertips to get the drawer open. Other sizes and conditions of hands will have their own special needs when considering hardware. Once that is settled style can be considered.

  13. I’ll show these advices to my friend right away!

  14. You made it properly.

  15. [...] I’m a believer in honoring the style of the cabinetry or piece with your hardware choices (like with these chests) because if you pick knobs or pulls in a style inconsistent with the lines of the cabinetry or style of furniture, it can be jarring. Find more tips on mixing finishes and choosing kitchen cabinet hardware in this article. [...]

  16. it was usefull article for me ,

    thank you so much

  17. [...] can improve the look and feel of your home. Since kitchen cabinets rarely come with hardware, use these tips in deciding how to choose door pulls and handles that are right for your [...]

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  20. Great and beautiful designs for kitchens. Wish i will see then soon at my home :)

  21. Kitchen cabinets are in latest trends and widely used in present scenario of modernization. Wooden kitchen cabinets look elegant in design and also very effective when come on easy handling of kitchen particulars. Modular kitchen sets are practical example of it.

  22. Brilliant post. It seems somone did a lot of research. Loved the images too. Beautiful home needs beautiful windows and doors fittings and kitchen fittings too in interior. keep up the good work…

  23. Knobs are, usually, the ones that are disregarded most often. It may be just an icing on the cake but it’ll surely make your kitchen cabinet far better. It can really make a difference if you chose the right ones.

    Appliance Art

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  25. Thanks for share, your post is really valuable for us

  26. Hi, can anyone tell me where to see more of the kitchen in the fourth picture from the top (white cabinets, light counters, chrome hardware, mint/jadeite/sage colored accents). It’s what I want to do in my kitchen!

    Thanks so much!

  27. [...] Now that the hardest parts are now checked off the list, we can get to work on the cabinets. The cabinets will be refaced, will include new doors with translucent inserts, plus feature new hardware. I originally  planned on using black drawer pulls to infuse the Craftsman vibe, but my stepdad is now contemplating handles like these: (source) (source) [...]

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  32. Hi, I am building a house. We’ve spent months picking out every detail. We had custom kitchen and bathroom cabinets made – they are now done and ready to be installed. I had forgotton that on my Kitchen cabinets I choose brushed nickel exposed hinges (they are small hinges but do show), I purchased all my knobs and cup pulls and because I had forgotton that hinge finish I purchased antique bronze. The company I ordered them thru charges a LOT for restocking. I am wondering how you think this will look. My cabinets are white, my island is stained wood.

  33. We are in the process of building out a cabin in the NC mountains. We are on a very strict budget because at this time it is a second home. I purchased some cup drawer pulls from a thrift type store, that sells vintage junk, lol. I bought all they had knowing I would use them in the cabin. They are probably from the fifties, but not much different than today’s style. My question is, can I use the pull cups on my cabinet doors as well as the drawers? My husband says yes but I am not so sure. I worry it will look funny and think I may have to use knobs on the doors. While I did not spent a fortune on the pulls, every dollar matters. Thank you for any help you can give me. Zee

  34. We are in the process of building out a cabin in the NC mountains. We are on a very strict budget because at this time it is a second home. I purchased some cup drawer pulls from a thrift type store, that sells vintage junk, lol. I bought all they had knowing I would use them in the cabin. They are probably from the fifties, but not much different than today’s style. My question is, can I use the pull cups on my cabinet doors as well as the drawers? My husband says yes but I am not so sure. I worry it will look funny and think I may have to use knobs on the doors. While I did not spent a fortune on the pulls, every dollar matters. Thank you for any help you can give me. Zee

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