Guide for Hardware Positioning
October 9, 2017

Ultimate Guide for Hardware Positioning

Changing out or adding new hardware can make an old cabinet look new again. So choosing the hardware not only that you like, but that fits the style you are trying to accomplish, is the first step in reimagining your space. Once you have selected your hardware, give some serious thought to its placement on the cabinets. You may not paid much attention before before, but the positioning of the hardware on your cabinetry makes a huge difference in its overall look. If the hardware is not well planned and thoughtfully placed, it can totally ruin your design. Also consider that your cabinets might bear the scars of older hardware, leaving behind screw holes and other wear, so take that into consideration when selecting new hardware that will either fit the same on center dimensions or that will cover any old blemishes. To find the perfect hardware to fit your existing holes, check our center to center reference guide. Now, please enjoy our Ultimate Guide for Hardware Positioning to take you design to another level!

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A general rule of thumb with cabinet hardware placement and pairing: when in doubt, consider specifying pulls for drawers and knobs for cabinet doors. This is obviously not always the case, but it’s an easy way play it safe and still guarantee a professional look.

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Before you start drilling holes, decide where you want your pulls and knobs to be placed. Get masking tape, a pencil, and a ruler. Masking tape is very helpful because you’ll be able to mark the cabinets without damaging them. This simple, important step will guarantee your new pulls and knobs will be installed exactly where they need to go. Remember, measure twice, cut once! So let’s dive in.

There are two general ways you can install knobs on your cabinetry:

1. You can align them with the top of the door’s inside frame.

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2. Or position the knob so it is centered with the top line of the door’s frame, like in the rendering below.

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Of course, if you have really tall cabinet doors, you’ll want to give preference to longer pulls that will accentuate the door’s size

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For larger, lower level drawers, the same pulls can be used on multiple levels, but note the positioning. It may not function as easily when placed in the center of the drawer and may provide more leverage from the higher plane, especially with heavier storage drawers. Remember, function is still an important factor!

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BUT, if your cabinets have perfectly squared drawers, you can place the hardware right in the middle of the drawer face as shown in the rendering below. This gives a harmonious balance, and the smaller lower drawer will still be operational with the center mounted pull.

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Our last recommendation is for long and skinny drawers. Balance is key here, and there are two methods that work equally well. One option is to place one large pull in the center of the drawer face. The second option is to divide the drawer into thirds and place two smaller pulls out towards the sides, leaving open space over the center line so the design can breathe in spite of doubling up on the hardware.

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That’s it! These are some basic guidelines to get you started. The rest is up to you! Find your inspiration and refresh your space with some simple touchups. If you like these tips Pin It to your board for later!

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Related Topics: Universal Design Kitchen, Selecting the Right Hardware, Kitchen Power Outlets, A Brief History of Cabinet Hardware