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How to Choose Kitchen Cabinet Hardware

How to Choose Kitchen Cabinet Hardware

Choosing the right hardware for your cabinet doors and drawers should be the most enjoyable part of your kitchen or bath project. After all, you've endured weeks or months of visiting showrooms, meeting with designers, salespeople, contractors, and the disruption of having your kitchen or bathroom demolished. Now all you have to do is pick out a knob or pull and you're done. Simple.

Your optimism is short-lived. For what you will find when you search for cabinet hardware on the internet is a multitude of retailers offering tens of thousands of  knobs and pulls in numerous finishes and styles. You will quickly discover that choosing the right knobs and pulls can be difficult, time-consuming and frustrating.  

We would like to give you some ammunition that will enable you to fight your way through this hardware jungle and make an informed decision. Here are some things you need to know when shopping for cabinet hardware.  

Center to Center - the distance from the CENTER of one screw hole to the CENTER of the other screw hole. This is the standard industry measurement for sizing cabinet handles.

center to center measurement bar pull

Overall Length - the distance from one end of the pull to the other end. This measurement is always greater than the center to center measurement.

length measurement bar pull

Projection - measures how far the pull or knob sticks out from the surface of the cabinet door or drawer once it is installed.

Diameter - while self-explanatory in a round knob, the diameter of a pull or handle, if given, generally refers to the width or thickness of the bar portion of the pull (the part you grab). 

diameter measurement round knob

While it is relatively easy to ascertain the look of finishes like Stainless Steel, Matte Black and Chrome from a picture on the internet, varying degrees of shine and color variation is common on most other finishes and not always readily discernible from a picture. A perfect example of this is the very popular Oil Rubbed Bronze which comes in shades ranging from brown to near black depending upon the manufacturer: 

When in doubt, it is best to look at a sample first before placing the full order. Virtually all suppliers of hardware impose a restocking fee set by the manufacturer on hardware returned to them for any reason other than defective. That means that if you receive the order and do not like the finish or appearance of the pulls, you are going to incur return shipping costs plus a restocking fee (which can run between 15% and 25% of the order) when you return them to the supplier. 
So, you can see the wisdom in ordering a sample first and then placing the full order after you are totally confident that you will love the hardware when the full order arrives. KnobDepot offers a 50% refund on your samples order when the full order is placed.
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Alex LaMarca - October 1, 2021

Very true – had this same issue with a Champagne finish from 2 different manufacturers

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