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Our Kitchen Handle Sizing Guide - What You Need to Know

kitchen cabinet

When attempting to improve the aesthetics of your kitchen, there are a number of things you can do to add the fresh look you're aiming for.

You can give the room a lick of paint, update the flooring or even add new appliances, but as our handle size guide shows, a lot of potential also lies in refreshing your kitchen handles.

finding the right sizes is also vital

This aspect is not considered as often as it should be when updating the kitchen's appearance, but cabinet and drawer handles can have a real impact.

With so many kitchen cabinet handles available on the market, the range of choices can be bamboozling. What's more, how do you find the right sizes? You need to know, as it matters.

A Range of options for Kitchen cupboard doors exist

Of course, personal preference plays a big part in the style you choose, but you also need the options you choose to meet your size requirements, as well as your interior design needs.

In this blog, we look at the available choices and how to ensure you get the right size. By reading to the end of our article, you'll better understand the considerations required to accurately find the right size handles for your needs.

So, let's waste no time and start by looking at the types of kitchen cabinet handles you'll have available to you.

A Selection of Kitchen Cabinet Handle Styles

The first choice you'll need to make is the style of the cabinet handles you're going to use. Of course, there are handleless cupboards, but for the purposes of this blog, we'll just consider those that need handles.

There are certain styles that lend themselves to different kitchen layouts. So, let's take a look at a few examples of what's available.

Drawer & Cabinet Knobs

drawer or cabinet knobs

One of the most popular types of cabinet door hardware comes in the form of the humble cabinet door knob. Available in a number of finishes, including satin nickel, matt black, pine, and white ceramic, there are plenty of options to meet your design requirements.

Just drill your fixing holes & They're installed

Easily installed using the one or two fixing holes supplied, these functional options deliver the necessary open/function while complementing your kitchen's decor and overall colour scheme.

Kitchen Cabinet Pull Handles

kitchen pull cabinet handle

Another popular choice for your kitchen cabinets and drawers comes in the form of cup handles that offer their own unique look.

Also referred to as a bin pull handle, it's an easily-maintained option that gives you plenty of surface area to grab onto.

Also known as cup handles

Cup handles are also available in a stunning selection of finishes, as you'll see by visiting the Hiatt online store. You've got brushed nickel, chrome, pewter, and antique brass, to name but a few.

Bar Handles For Kitchen Cabinets

bar cabinet handles

Characterised by their two screw holes and distinctive angular design, bar handles offer lots of visual interest and function.

Often coming with knurled surfaces for enhanced grip, these are amongst our most popular kitchen handles.

Each product features Two fixing holes

Again available in a range of finishes including matt black, brushed brass, ceramic & antique brass, and silver, these great-looking kitchen handles offer as much design potential as your needs.

There truly is something for everyone.

How to Accurately Position Your Kitchen Cabinet Handles

Anyone who's ever engaged in DIY will tell you that getting your measurements right matters. When installing multiple handles, you need to ensure they're all level and properly placed.

Even though visitors to your home won't notice if you get it wrong, you will every time you see it, so measuring up is a crucial stage. Here's how it's done.

  1. Measure from the leading edge (furthest from the hinges) and make light pencil marks at the top and bottom at 50 mm.

  2. Join marks up with a straight line, checking vertical alignment with a spirit level.

  3. Measure the cabinet door's total height & divide by 3 to break the area up into thirds.

  4. Measure the distance between the centres of your handle's two fixing holes.

  5. Subtract this figure from the top 1/3rd of your cabinet door's height and divide by 2. This will help you mark where the first screw hole is made.

  6. Lastly, measure down from your first screw hole pencil mark using the distance worked out in step 4 and mark your final screw hole.

This is a process that will work for every cabinet door in your kitchen, allowing you to get every cabinet door handle perfectly positioned.

So, How Do You Determine the Right Size Handle?

different sizes kitchen handles

Getting the right size of handle for your cupboards and drawer fronts can seem tricky, but the good news is that there are some hard and fast rules to guide you. Furthermore, the main focus is on getting the right proportion.

The general rule is that when you have larger cabinets, you need cabinet handles that complement the overall size i.e. they're not too small. Conversely, you don't typically want a larger handle on small cabinet doors.

The Dimensions Need to Be Right

Once you've decided whether to get pull handles, bar handles, or regular cabinet door knobs, it's time to work how they're configured, as you're going to need different types for different uses.

Most Kitchens Have a Range of Size Requirements

Ok, so when looking for the right options for the cabinetry you'll find in most fitted kitchens, you'll have to find cabinet hardware for your main kitchen cabinets, as well as your drawers and smaller-sized side cabinets.

So let's look at the best options for each one:

Large Cabinets (Your Main Cupboards)

large kitchen cabinets

When looking for the right cabinet hardware for your main cupboards, you have to consider the size of the door. Being larger, you'll need smaller size handles that don't look out of place when installed in the top corners of the door.

So, you'll be looking at products that suit the larger door, such as:

That's not to say that cabinet knobs aren't suitable for large doors, as they can be suitable. However, if the length of the door is high, you'll need to choose a design with larger dimensions, so as to get the proportion right.

Smaller Cabinets (Side Cabinets)

small kitchen cabinets

So, naturally, when you're attempting to find the right kitchen handles for your smaller cabinets, you'll be aiming for something smaller.

As such, this may tip you back towards knobs for this more diminutive, yet still functional cabinetry. There are, of course, other types of kitchen handles that fit the bill by offering the right handle sizes.

Drawer Fronts

Your drawers are usually the smallest areas you'll need to think about in the kitchen and there's a '1/3 rule' which means choosing handles that are approximately 1/3 the length of the drawer, to allow for the right placement.

So, whether you're going for a classic, traditional, or more contemporary look, just make sure that the knobs or handles you choose, adhere to this general guide.

Try Drawing Out Your Plans to Scale

scaling where to drill in a kitchen cabinet

If you're struggling for inspiration for your kitchen upgrade plans, it can be a good idea to draw out your plans on a rough-to-scale basis.

This will allow you to envision the different styles and finishes for real, allowing you to determine which will look best once installed.

Get Creative in your planning

If it's possible, why not try cutting out or printing off a picture of your intended handles and taping them to your cabinetry? Sure, it's not perfect, but it can give you a clear example of what things will look like.

By uploading the picture to your laptop and using your picture editing software, you should also be able to get just the right size to replicate the actual measurements.

Check before drilling any holes

It's also wise to double-check the kitchen handles you choose once you actually have them in your hands, ready to go.

Just get a big piece of Blu-Tack and stick one of the handles to your cabinet doors, rather than steaming ahead and drilling holes. This is a move that can save you an awful lot of time, stress, and money.

Selecting the Right Kitchen Handles Takes a Methodical Approach

As we can see, getting the right match of handles and knobs for your kitchen space simply requires that you take a slow and methodical approach.

With so many colours, finishes, and styles to think about - as well as sizes - it can be tricky to find the best options. Following the steps laid out above will ensure, however, that you don't find out you choose wrong AFTER you attach them.

Whether you're after a sleek modern look or a country kitchen style, you'll find a whole range of options to create your kitchen vision. It's just a matter of finding the right blend of complementary products.

Just remember to consider the size of the cupboards and drawers fully when making your plans or they could end up looking either impractical or simply too tiny.

Thanks again for reading our blog. We hope it makes the job a little bit easier and that you take a moment to consider the wide range of options available at the Hiatt online store.