Cabinet hardware is the perfect accent to a beautiful kitchen, and the right handles can be the finishing touch in a hardworking space. After choosing cabinets and countertops, picking cabinet handles -- or pulls, as they're often called -- is an important decision that is left until the very end of the process, but can make big impact. Read on to learn what to consider when shopping for cabinet pulls.
When choosing hardware for cabinets, there are knobs and handles, which are sometimes called pulls. Whether you only use knobs, only use pulls, or use a combination of the two, quality is important. The handles will be used multiple times a day, so it is important they not only look good, but function well, too.
As with the rest of your home, the styling of the handle is vital. In a kitchen with simple, streamlined cabinets, modern hardware with squared edges or slim, tubular pulls complement the clean look of contemporary cabinetry. For more traditional, cottage, or country spaces, pulls with decorative details and ornate styling work best.
Once you've decided on the handle style, consider the finish. It isn't necessary to match every finish in your kitchen, but use similar finishes to create continuity, such as mixing a chrome faucet with brushed-nickel knobs or oil-rubbed bronze knobs with bronze light fixtures. A simple way to help you decide on a finish is to match your handles to your appliances. If you have stainless-steel appliances, cabinet hardware in brushed nickel or chrome looks natural. For black appliances, try darker handles such as oil-rubbed bronze. If the hinges on your cabinets are exposed, match them to the handles for a cohesive look.
Painted cabinets work well with handles in dark or light finishes, depending on your kitchen's style. For example, to create a cozy, old-world feel in your kitchen, pair painted green cabinets with rustic oil-rubbed bronze handles, or make it a more modern space by mixing the green cabinets with brushed-nickel pulls and stainless-steel appliances.
Of all of the elements in your kitchen, cabinet pulls are the easiest -- and often least expensive -- to replace. There are thousands of options to choose from, so pick handles that you love and that are functional for how you use your kitchen -- and you can't go wrong.