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Easy and cost-effective ways to refresh - Handles

With cost-of-living top of the current agenda, many are keeping a close eye on household expenditure. In some cases, homeowners have made the decision to put on hold or even cancel kitchen projects, while others continue to press on with original plans building, renovating, or refreshing.

It won't come as a surprise to anyone that these days hard-earned money doesn't go as far as it once did, but for those who have decided on a kitchen refresh, the good news is that there are ways to update and create an amazing space without breaking the bank.

In the second of our ‘Easy and cost-effective ways to refresh’ blogs, we focus on handles – small but vital (unless you have handle-less kitchen units!) yet an item that can make a real difference to the overall look and feel of the room.

When it comes to deciding on the style of handle, there are a wide range to choose – from pulls and knobs to T-bars, J-bars and drop design. These are often available in different materials including wood, metal, and leather as well as different finishes for example brass, brushed chrome, copper, or matt black. Where possible, try and hold different handle types up to your cabinetry before you decide.

The size of the handle is also important – going too big or too small is the most common mistake. A pull-style handle can look tiny on large doors or drawers but too large and they can overpower the unit. Just be careful of handles with sharp corners if you have children as they can cause a safety issue.

Next think about where the handle will go. If replacing like for like, you may be constrained by the markings or fixings of the previous handles. Handles on doors of integrated items such as dishwashers or fridges need to be larger and most robust. They need to provide decent purchase and stand the test of being pulled repeatedly. There should be plenty of leverage and grip even with wet hands.

Whilst handles are a much smaller part of the overall kitchen design, they are one of the most touched surfaces in the kitchen and often by multiple members of the household so they must be hard-wearing and suit personal dexterity. They should also work well with the rest of your kitchen scheme – for example – metal handles work well in an industrial-inspired setting while a vintage cup or wooden handle is better in a rustic or utilitarian kitchen.

Of course, you can mix the type of handle, but finishes should all match. Consider whether you want your handles to match or work as an accent to your light fittings, appliances, and taps.

Handles don’t require any special treatment when it comes to cleaning. Keep away from harsh, abrasive cleaners – simply wipe over with damp cloth and give them a quick polish every now and then with a soft dry cloth for a perfect finish

12th Sep 2022