Cabinet Hardware Guidelines: What You Need to Know About Style, Finish, and Placement of Cabinet Knobs and Pulls

Cabinet hardware, although a small part of the whole project, still requires some serious thought as to style, finish and placement on the cabinetry. Should it be a knob or a pull?  Should the finish match the faucet or appliances or should it complement the cabinetry finish?  Exactly where on the doors and drawers should they be located?

 As for rules for all of this, there really are none.  There are some general guidelines that can help the selection process and help eliminate a few of the thousands of options.  Whether you use all knobs, all pulls or a combination of the two, the size of the hardware piece should fit the user’s hand comfortably.  Many of today’s hardware manufacturers offer the same style of hardware in multiple sizes which makes the selection process easier once you find something you like

Weathered wood kitchen island with a combination of knobs and pulls that complement each other.

The placement of the hardware is another consideration, in the case of doors, the further away from the door hinge, the less effort it takes to open the door.   As for the height placement on a door, the style and construction of the door has some impact, but typically the hardware would be placed 2 ½“to 3 ½” from the bottom of a door on a wall cabinet, or from the top of a door on a base cabinet.

Large scale cabinet hardware on sleek dark stained flat panel cabinet doors from Dura Supreme Cabinetry.

For drawer fronts, typically the hardware would be centered either in the center of the drawer front or the top rail.  Depending on the size of the hardware and the width of the drawer, two pieces of hardware can be used spaced further apart to keep the drawer from binding.

These are only guidelines, and as you can see from my hardware placement I didn’t follow all of them.

A gray stained bathroom furniture vanity with hardware pulls places at the top of each cabinet and knobs centered on drawers..



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