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Moms 3 Step Guide to Cabinet Hardware

If you're a busy mom who wants a beautiful home and needs advice on how to choose hardware for your cabinetry, you've come to the right place! Whether you're updating an existing kitchen, bath or mudroom, or planning an entirely new home, this post will help you figure out how to choose appropriate cabinet hardware. Hardware is jewelry in your kitchen and you want to have fun with this! So grab another cup of coffee and read on!


You want to start by identifying the design style you want your room to have which should be reflected in the cabinet door style you have. If you missed that post, here it is "Choosing the Right Door Style". Is your ideal style vintage farmhouse, coastal modern, french traditional, California contemporary, etc? You want to hone in on your design style so you can select hardware that fits.

But here is where it gets tricky... often times hardware and lighting are places to branch out and add a twist. For example just by adding modern pulls to shaker style doors with a cool light fixture, you create modern coastal. The same goes for pretty much every design style you can think of and I personally love mixing it up this way as it adds interest and keeps things current.

modern coastal kitchen wet bar seedy glass gold hardware fan light
Modern Coastal by Robin Johnson Interiors


If you are remodeling or building a brand new kitchen and have 2D cabinet elevations use these! Sketch in different hardware looks with a pencil. You can play with knobs vs pulls on doors and drawers and even play with using 2 pulls per drawer or longer pulls for wider drawers. One current trend is to run door pulls horizontally along the top vs vertically. This actually makes sense for base cabinets because you can reach the pulls more easily. I just did this in my master bath remodel and love the look! I use one of the horizontal drawer pulls to hang my hand towels on. You can find that post here "Our Master Bathroom Remodel: Before & After Pics".

If you are simply replacing hardware on existing cabinets you will need to measure your existing holes and replace with the same size hardware. You need the center to center measurement which means the exact distance from the center of one hole across to the other.

Either way count up how many of each style you need and always add a couple extra in case you need replacements down the road or miscounted.


The last step is choosing which finish of hardware you want to use. Mixing and matching metals can be intimidating for many but it shouldn't be. I recommend sticking with 2 metal finishes in a room. Metal finishes can include appliances, plumbing fixtures, cabinet hardware and lighting. So if your kitchen has stainless appliances and plumbing, you can pick an additional finish for your hardware and lighting. I like to use the the "second" metal finish on at least 2 categories of metal for impact and consistency. See? Nothing to it!

There really are no right or wrong rules as to what combination of hardware you end up with other than it needs to meet the following criteria:

  • You love your hardware!

  • You use the same finish for all pieces even if from different lines or collections

  • You scale them appropriately

Join me in my new FB group Kitchen, Baths and Mudrooms by Design. Each week I will select one member's design challenge to solve on a FB live for the whole group to learn from. Get in early and see you there!

If you are working on designing your own kitchen grab my free guide while it's available! Click image below.


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