Hardware is the “jewelry” of cabinets and doors found in kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms and other locales within the home. Whether you are building a new home, renovating an existing one or looking to change the look of what you currently own, selecting the right cabinet hardware enables you to make a unique design statement.
Cabinet hardware too often is considered an afterthought that, without appropriate consideration, can compromise both the look of your home and the functionality of your kitchen and bath. Many would consider wearing sneakers with a tuxedo as inappropriate, so too is selecting plastic pulls for new kitchen or bath cabinetry. The quality of the cabinet hardware selected should complement and enhance the quality of the cabinetry, appliances and furnishings in your home.
Cabinet hardware can transform a mundane generic piece into something outstanding if the hardware is carefully integrated with a cabinet’s design, style and materials. Knobs and pulls that are featured in a kitchen and bath showroom are differentiated by the following characteristics:
- Quality of the base material (solid brass, pewter, porcelain, glass)
- Quality, type and range of finishes
- Type and length of warranty
- Uniqueness of design
- Level of detail
- Ergonomic function
Form is one of the characteristics that allow decorative cabinet hardware to stand apart. Function is another. Our showroom professionals can explain the performance benefits and differences of decorative knobs and pulls and provide guidance to help assure that the style, finish and size of the hardware selected are best suited for your specific application.
Finish is the surface that we see and touch. It affects the aesthetics, durability and utility of architectural and cabinet hardware. Each category of finish involves different processes resulting in varying visual effects and durability. Showroom professionals will explain the performance characteristics of various finishes and why certain types may be more suited to your lifestyle, environmental conditions and application requirements. The same finish that you use in your master bath may not be appropriate for an outdoor kitchen and barbeque area. Additionally, not all pulls and knobs come in all finishes. In starting your search for the most appropriate products for your home, determining the finish that you want is a good place to begin. Note that the length of the warranty serves as an indicator of the quality of the finish.
An Endless Array of Choices
There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to selecting appropriate cabinet hardware for your home. The range of products featured in a showroom or online can be at times overwhelming. For that reason, a showroom professional can be a tremendous asset. Showroom professionals will help you narrow what may seem to be an endless array of options. Educated consumers also can limit the amount of time, energy and effort needed to select the best products by preparing in advance for a trip to the showroom.
Where Form Meets Function
A pull describes any piece of cabinet hardware with two or more holes for mounting. It is used interchangeably with the term “handle.” Conversely, a knob is any piece of cabinet hardware that has only one hole for mounting. Working with knowledgeable showroom professionals will help assure that the correct mounting technique and fasteners are provided. Cabinet hardware can be attached to surfaces in several ways. They can be attached using screws inserted through the back of the door or drawer. If access to back is not possible, some knobs can be surface mounted. Alternatively, knobs and pulls can be mounted using a breadboard screw.
Showroom professionals will specify the correct length and thread size of the screws or fasteners that match both the dimensions of the drawer, appliance or cabinet and the size of the pull or knob provided that proper dimensions are provided. The usage of the drawer or cabinet also will affect selection. Some finishes will not react well to constant exposure to soapy hands or cleaning fluids. Some pulls may not offer the strength needed to open drawers containing pots and pans or small kitchen appliances. Long drawers may operate more effectively if you use a large pull or two pulls or knobs, one on each side of the drawer. Knobs may be a better choice in rooms where small children are active to avoid damage or injuries caused by a child hanging on a pull or using one to stand up. Our showroom professionals can help assure that form will meet function in your selection of pulls and knobs for your home. If you are interested in specifying the best hardware for your cabinets and drawers, please call or showroom at or visit us at.