OUR GUIDE TO UPGRADING YOUR CUPBOARD HANDLES

What happens when it’s time to make a drastic improvement to your home, but a full renovation isn’t viable?

A home reno comes with a significant investment in time and money, not to mention being unrealistic when renting.

Cue the simple and affordable solution to giving your home an overdue upgrade without professional help — cupboard handles.

New cupboard handles can elevate a piece of furniture from outdated to elegant or completely transform your wardrobes and cabinetry. You can even unify mismatched furniture and fixtures by coordinating the hardware in your space.

Whichever outcome you’re aiming to achieve, here’s what you need to know about refreshing your space by changing your cupboard handles.

HOW TO CHOOSE CUPBOARD HANDLES

When selecting the best cupboard handles for your kitchen, bathroom, laundry, or bedroom, there are a few important factors to consider.

1. USE

Consider the frequency of use — if you’re accessing this space often, you will need to select drawer or cupboard door handles that are durable and comfortable to grip. Their intended purpose is also important. For example, cupboards that sit below a food preparation area must be easy to clean, therefore a smooth surface with few intricate details would be most appropriate.

2. FINISH

If your bathroom needs improvement, creating consistency throughout your space will have the most appealing effect. The finish of your cupboard door handles or drawer pulls should match that of the surrounding fixtures, such as your towel rails, tapware, and shower head. 

For example, brushed copper cupboard handles will likely appear out of place beneath matte black tapware.

Similarly, we recommend matching your kitchen cupboard handles to the colour of your kitchen mixer while taking into consideration your benchtop, cabinetry materials, and overall theme.

3. SHAPE

The ideal cupboard handle shape for your space will be determined by the style of your home. For example, if you are creating a contemporary home with strikingly angled features, the straight lines of the Tezra Cabinetry Pull would be a seamless addition to your design.

In contrast, if you’re aiming for a more laidback style such as that of a coastal home, you may create harmony with the curves of a brushed brass cabinetry knob.

The shape of the handle will also reflect its purpose, determining whether cabinetry knobs or pulls are better for your space. Knobs are an effective option for smaller doors and drawers or those which aren’t being constantly used. However, for large pantries or heavier pull-out drawers, handles will be much more comfortable.

4. SIZE

You should also be conscious of the height and length of your new cabinetry pulls or wardrobe handles. If they protrude further than those previous, ensure that they won’t get caught on clothing as you walk past or collide with other furniture when being opened.

5. PRICE

Your budget will be greatly influenced by the price of your chosen knobs when considering the quantity required.

For example, replacing the cupboard handles and drawer knobs throughout your entire kitchen can be expensive if you opt for high-end designs, making it more difficult to stick to a tighter budget.

On the other hand, if you’re replacing only a single set of wardrobe door handles, you can select a more luxurious option without the costs climbing quickly.

6. TIMEFRAME

Keep in mind that special orders may result in substantial waiting times. So, if you have a tight schedule, choose cupboard handles that are currently in stock. Or, if you’re willing to wait, ensure you don’t remove your old knobs until the new ones arrive.

TIPS BEFORE BUYING WARDROBE HANDLES

Save yourself stress when installing your wardrobe door handles or cupboard knobs by planning ahead.

Before you purchase your hardware, here are a few ideas to make the process much smoother:

  • Count how many cupboard door handles or wardrobe knobs need replacing.
  • Take close-up photos of your existing hardware before removing it.
  • Get a wider shot of the room to assist with colour matching and creating a cohesive space.
  • Take photos of your doors and drawers and become familiar with their dimensions, the direction they move, and their existing holes.
  • Measure the ‘centre-to-centre’ dimension on existing cabinet pulls — choosing a new handle with the same distance between the two attachment points (also known as ‘drill centres’ or ‘pilot holes’) will save time filling existing holes and drilling new ones.
  • Always order a few extra of your chosen design to account for future damages or wear-and-tear — this prevents disappointment if the style is out of stock when you need it later on.

HOW TO INSTALL CUPBOARD HANDLES

For cupboard knobs that will sit in the same position, simply unscrew the old handle from the back, then place the new one straight back in.

If your updated cupboard handles will be placed in a different position from the originals, you’ll benefit from first testing their placement. This will avoid the potential of your cupboard knobs causing an obstruction on opening or sitting in a spot that is uncomfortable for use.

Attach your handles with Blu-Tack to determine the optimal placement, then mark where the holes will be drilled. A handle jig is a time-saver with adjustable guides for accurate hole placement, avoiding the need to measure individual positions for each of your cupboard door handles.

Then, fill the original holes with wood putty, preferably in a colour that matches the surface. Once dried, remove the excess putty by sanding with medium to fine-grit sandpaper. Paint or stain the filled area, then drill your new holes where you’ve marked using your jig.

Before winding on the knobs, apply a thread sealant to the ends of the screws to prevent them from becoming loose with frequent use.

Once you’ve completed the replacement of your cupboard door knobs, you can continue with your affordable home enhancement. Simply apply a fresh coat of paint, do a spring clean, and organise your possessions into matching storage containers to add the finishing touch to your new space.