Are you ready to pick out your cabinet knobs and handles?

After picking out the cabinets and doors for your dream kitchen, many homeowners second guess their choices. They may not look just as you pictured it, or perhaps the chosen styles don’t play well together. Do not fret. Now, you can fine tune your kitchen style by selecting eye-catching cabinet knobs and handles. Choosing cabinetry was just first step in the long journey of designing your kitchen.

Getting a grip on cabinet knobs and handles

Much like watches or jewelry, well-chosen cabinet hardware pulls together your entire kitchen’s style.

Cabinet hardware comes in a variety of options at corresponding price points. Knobs and handles range from $6 to $12, reaching the $20+ when featuring ornate designs. Knobs go on doors, and pulls/handles go on drawers. Two-bin pulls are often used when a drawer stretches 30 inches and wider.

The most popular materials used are bronze, antique bronze, oil-rubbed bronze, polished chrome, polished nickel, and satin nickel.

There’s no hard and fast rule when choosing cabinet knobs and handles. All you really need to do is hold them against the finish of your cabinets to see which colors and styles go best together. While you’re at it, you should judge which size works best. Keep in mind when choosing that it is best that a handle not overpower a drawer.

Furthermore, if you want your kitchen to sport a cohesive aesthetic, select hardware of a similar color to the finish on your fixtures and appliances. Brushed nickel, for example, coordinates well with stainless steel appliances, while a dark, oil-rubbed bronze looks great with black appliances. Of course, not everything has to match – you can still have antique bronze handles on your drawers next to copper light fixtures. Just try to have different finishes complement each other, and your kitchen’s overall aesthetic. For example, a shiny chrome faucet with dull dark-colored knobs such as bronze on cabinet doors will still work, especially in a contemporary kitchen.

Also, if your cabinet hinges are exposed, your hardware should definitely have the same finish. Here are additional style points:

  • Bronze will give your kitchen old-world charm.
  • Antique brass provides a feel similar to copper pots.
  • Antique bronze, which may look black in different shades of light, will work to contrast with lighter-colored cabinets or else blend in with darker-stained cabinets.
  • If you like your handles and knobs to be shiny and reflect light, chrome or polished nickel does the job nicely. Polished nickel is more expensive than chrome, but its luster is worth it and its shine won’t fade over time.
  • Satin (or brushed) nickel finish, which is nickel on brass that has been dulled and then coated with lacquer, is similar in appearance to brushed stainless steel, and coordinates well with appliances in that finish.
  • Pewter or oil-rubbed bronze works well with wood cabinets. As for painted cabinets, the good news is that just about any finish will look great.

For a classic look, choose a round knob with a 1 inch or 1¼” diameter. That measurement is standard, hence conforms to most cabinets.

Here we will look at two popular knobs: round and square.

Round knobs

Designed with classic proportions and a simple style, a round knob lends a polished finish to your cabinets.

Round knobs come in different styles. They can have a “built-up” look.

And they also can be glass accented, This knob is jeweled with an octagon of clear pressed glass.

Square knobs

A square knob pairs well with modern or contemporary cabinets, and can also have an art deco flair. Traditional diameters are around  1″ or 1¼” , with heights of 1″ and projections of 1.219.”


Pulls are for your drawers and, provided they fit, are also great for base cabinets. Like knobs, they are also made from brass, and some are made from a dye-cast zinc base. Popular finishes include bronze, polished nickel, satin nickel, antique brass, chrome, and antique copper.

Read more: Loose door knobs

Bin pulls

Shaped like an upside down cup, bin pulls are the most popular type of base cabinet drawer handle. Their ergonomic design has the ability to match any cabinet door. They also come in many shapes, so it’s easy to match any kitchen aesthetic.

Another popular handle type is the tubular drawer pull. These go well with contemporary kitchens because they are sleek in nature.

Cabinet knobs and handles may seem like small, inconsequential elements of your kitchen design compared to others, but can make a huge impact on the look of your cooking space. By considering the many options available, you can create a stunning, personalized kitchen fit for your dreams.

MORE: How to Pick Kitchen Cabinets. 

How to Update Your Kitchen Cabinet Knobs & Handles was last modified: December 12th, 2022 by Augustine Reyes Chan
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