The Ultimate Guide To Select Kitchen Hardware Wisely

[BLOG] Published: 2021-04-04 - Updated: 2023-05-31

Select The Kitchen Hardware Wisely


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The Ultimate Guide On How To Select The Kitchen Hardware Wisely

Choosing kitchen hardware for your kitchen remodeling project is not an easy feat, especially if it's the first time to take it on your own. Since hardware material, quality, color, brand, and hardware sizes can be pretty challenging. But, this guide makes your work pretty easy. Ready to get started? Let's roll in quickly!

Kitchen Cabinet Hardware

It's easy to overlook the importance of hardware for your new kitchen when renovating your home or constructing a custom home. Many homeowners get caught up choosing larger items like kitchen flooring, cabinets, and countertops without paying attention to these final touches.  A project isn't successful until you have picked the proper kitchen hardware that creates a tremendous visual impact and strikes a balance between function and aesthetics.

Knobs vs. Pulls

There are no hard rules to follow when deciding whether to pick knobs, pulls, or a combination of both. You just have to select something that reflects your unique personality and style. For instance, it makes sense to use knobs on all cabinet doors and pulls for all drawers. It is much easier to open a drawer with a pull as it allows you to grab with the whole hand rather than using only fingertips. Cabinet pulls can also work perfectly for extremely heavy drawers with all your dishes, pots, and other stuff.

Knobs – This is the most basic cabinet handle, perfect for drawers and cabinets alike. They are designed with a single screw and are mostly circular. Knobs often come in various shapes, including T-shape and square. You can also find them in different materials and finishes ranging from ceramic to wood. Consequently, knobs are relatively cheaper and easier to install since they only require a single screw to secure them to the surface.

Pulls – These fixtures are bigger than knobs and are easier to grip, allowing the drawers to be easily pulled open. They usually come with a precut hole for simple installation and consistent placement. Pulls are a bit expensive than knobs and come in various sizes, finishes, and styles.

Pro Tip Takeaway: Use levers and roll-on designs to make your kitchen handicap-friendly.

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How to Select Kitchen Cabinet Hardware

Picking the proper kitchen hardware can be a daunting and head-scratching process to many. Keep in mind that cabinet hardware comes in various styles, finishes, types, materials, and sizes. At Smart Remodeling, we have extensive knowledge and experience of kitchen hardware designs and trends. Here are our great tips to help you select a suitable finishing touch for your kitchen cabinets.

  1. Get on with your Style.

The first step to choosing your perfect kitchen hardware is to think of a style that can fit your space and complement your kitchen's overall style. Kitchen cabinet hardware comes in four categories: traditional, transitional, eclectic, and modern designs.

  • Traditional

If you're looking for a vintage look, you will have to consider heritage-inspired designs such as curved silhouettes, textured, and hardware with ridges. Heritage cabinetry style features moldings and elaborate detailing. Most designers opt for traditional-style cabinets with complementing knobs on the drawers. Classical hardware may include hive knobs, dash knobs, knurled knobs, mid-century knobs, pacific pulls, and card file pulls.


  • Modern

Contemporary cabinetry tends to have sleek lines and edges with a minimal profile and little ornamentation. To achieve a sophisticated look and feel, it's good to select simple and streamlined hardware. You can opt for linear bar handles with curved barrels or straight lines.

Alternatively, given that stainless steel appliances dominate the modern kitchen, you can choose cabinetry handles in a similar finish and style as your home appliances. Some standard cabinetry hardware includes ledge pulls, Edgecliff pulls, Alberta pulls, Riverwood knobs, summit knobs, and more.


  • Eclectic

Eclectic-inspired designs can spice up your cabinetry and showcase a great personality. There are several handle styles to choose from; you can opt for handles with a seashell shape for a beach house or go for painted knobs for a more beautiful and relaxed style.


  • Transitional

Are you looking for a more blended look and feel? If yes, a mix of traditional and contemporary elements will give you a perfect transitional style. For instance, you can combine a slightly decorated inset door with a clean and streamlined cabinetry look. However, don't go overboard with either style as it can create an unappealing look.

Pro Tip Take Away: Select the best kitchen hardware that blends with your kitchen style.

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  1. Have a Rough Idea of the Hardware Finish Options that Match your Kitchen.

Once you select a suitable style for your space, the next step is to find the right hardware finish. It is worth noting that hundreds of hardware finish out there, and the one you choose depends on your style and preferences. Typically, any handle finish can fit all cabinet styles, but some finishes can work well with specific styles. You have to consider some factors when selecting a finish for your cabinetry. Here is what we recommend.

  • Your primary designs – If you prefer a traditional kitchen, consider choosing oil-rubbed and antique finishes because they work well with that style. But if you have a contemporary design, you can opt for chrome or polished brass. Similarly, farmhouse or casual designs will function better with black hardware. On the other hand, transitional designs can blend with any finish but works perfectly with polished nickel and rushed.
  • Try some samples – Sometimes, it helps if you tested a range of finishes to see what works well with your cabinetry. This will give you a glimpse of how your kitchen will look on each finish. Collect a few knobs and pulls from the nearby store, fit them in the space, and see what fits your style the most.

Pro Tip takeaway: Always consider functionality before considering the design and style of kitchen hardware.


  1. Know the Types of Hardware Finishes Available in the Market

A rough knowledge of a variety of hardware available in your local home improvement stores can help you figure out what could best fit into your kitchen design and style.

  • Polished Brass Finishes

If you're looking for a much warmer feel, consider choosing a polished brass finish.  This option gives your cabinetry a shiny gold tone. Although it was deemed traditional, modern brass finishes have updated features that can enhance your style. Depending on cabinetry style, you can choose modern brass pulls, brass cup pulls, or transitional brass.

  • Chrome Finishes

You can't go wrong with a chrome finish for cabinet hardware. Chrome is a classic choice that gives your cabinetry a shining jewelry look and provides endless options. However, some people avoid using chrome because they find it hard to maintain a polished look. That said, chrome comes in various styles, including modern bar and transitional cabinet pull.

  • Satin Nickel Finishes

This is one of the most common hardware finish styles. Even with the introduction of bronze and brass hardware, satin nickel still dominates. This is because it's less sensitive to fingerprints than shiner options and can coordinate well with stainless steel fixtures and appliances. Satin nickel creates a warmer tone and can work perfectly with almost every design style. This hardware finish comes in many forms, such as classic cabinet pulls and traditional cabinet pulls.

  • Oil Rubbed Bronze Finishes

Also known as aged bronze, oil rubbed bronze is another popular choice for hardware finish. It has a deep brown tone, and it will provide a sophisticated and more traditional kitchen style. Aged bronze hardware exists in various tones and finishes, including modern pulls and transitional cabinet pulls.

  • Antique Brass Finishes

Antique brass finishes have gained massive popularity in the past few years. They are excellent choices for those looking for warmth but don't want to look too dated with polished brass. This type of hardware finish comes in a wide range of textures and colors, which vary from one manufacturer to another.  Antique brass can appear browner and darker as an aged bronze or light brushed finish. Some standard antique brass options include classic cabinet pulls and transitional antique brass.

  • Black Finishes

Black hardware finish is an excellent choice for families as it is less susceptible to fingerprints and doesn't show dirt and scrapes as quickly as the shiner finishes. No wonder it is a popular choice for many. You can transform the look of your kitchen with modern cup pulls or modern cabinet finger pulls.


Pro Tip Take Away: Any kitchen hardware finish can generally fit all cabinet styles. But certain finishes blend flawlessly with specific cabinetry styles – pick a finished style that matches your cabinetry's primary design.

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  1. Explore Various Kitchen Hardware Prices for a Precise Idea of the Costing

The cost of cabinetry hardware varies from one company to another, and in most cases, you get what you pay for. Although it isn't obvious that high-priced kitchen cabinet hardware is of good quality, it makes sense to say that most cheap brands may offer finishes of shoddy quality. Suppose you're unsure of selecting the best hardware finishes. In that case, experts at Smart Remodeling make it their responsibility to guide you in the selection process to ensure you make an informed decision.

We will walk you through our showroom with a larger variety and ensure you pick the right hardware to suit your budget and style. Remember, the price of kitchen hardware is often based on design and finish.  For example, longer pulls will cost more than shorter ones because of the more materials used. Stainless steel options are also going to be more expensive.

  • Materials

Cabinet knobs and pulls usually come in various materials, and most of them are designed with metal alloys. Bronze hardware creates a unique feel and looks in your kitchen – it works best for cabinetry designed of thicker wood. Brass hardware has plating or lacquer on its surface, making it a durable option for the kitchen. On the other hand, stainless steel is the most popular cabinet hardware material that offers unmatched durability. You can also opt for nickel, pewter, or glass hardware for a more classic look.


  • Determine the Size

Cabinets and drawers come in different sizes, and it can be hard to determine the right size for your cabinetry. Again, there are no strict rules on picking a suitable size, but we suggest a pull-to-drawer length to be about1/3 of the drawer width. Larger cabinetry that is 30 – 48 inches requires a knob that is one or more inches in diameter and a cabinet pull length of 8 inches or longer.

You can also use two knobs or pulls on larger drawers or cabinets. Medium drawers and cabinets 12 – 30 inches can work better with a cabinet pull length of 4 – 8 inches or a knob measuring up to 1.5 inches in diameter. Smaller cabinetry that is 12 inches or less fits well with a full length of 3 – 4 inches or a knob of one inch in diameter.

Pro Tip Takeaway: Consider quality and functionality over design and cost.


  1. It Is Perfectly Fine to Mix Metals and Finishes

Carefully mixing your hardware finishes can make your home look unique and feel collected. But ensure you don't go overboard with the finishes. To avoid going too far with your mixed hardware, we recommend that you don't combine more than two finishes for your kitchen. Using too many finish styles will reduce the impact of the finishes and make it difficult for you to maintain the original focus. It is also wise to combine at least two finishes in each finishing group. A single gold item will look funny if the rest of the finishes are satin nickel.

However, introducing a pendant into the mix will elevate the entire look. It is also crucial that you stay in the same color group – you can choose to mix brushed nickel and brass but leave chrome out of the picture. Another great tip is that you should mix color groups and not hardware finishes.  Whatever color finish you choose to mix, remember that your ultimate goal is to maintain your kitchen's cohesiveness.

Whether you decide to mix silver and gold or any other combination, you should maintain an all brushed or all polished finish style. You can also feel free to mix finishes, materials, and metals for a matchy-matchy look. This will make your space look much more curated and layered. Try a mix of antique brass and oil-rubbed bronze or black matte and polished nickel.

As you start to shop for your kitchen hardware, remember that every kitchen has its own set of needs and requirements. We recommend taking some time to experiment with different types, finishes, and sizes to see every item's impact on your space.

Pro Tip Take Away: Before buying your kitchen hardware, take some time to experiment with different types, finishes, and sizes to see every item's impact on your space.

Get Expert Advice!

Are you looking forward to purchasing your kitchen hardware but aren't sure of what to choose for a fantastic kitchen look? We've got you covered. With our team of expert designers, you can get answers to all your questions. Contact us today and to discuss various possibilities for your project.


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