Choosing the Perfect Size Pulls for Kitchen Cabinets

What size bar pulls for kitchen cabinets - Tantrums and Tools

Are you wondering what size bar pulls for kitchen cabinets are best? I get it, you are worried about messing up your gorgeous new cabinets by putting a hole in the wrong spot! Finding the perfect cabinet hardware doesn’t have to be so overwhelming. If you want to find the perfect size bar pulls for new cabinets (actually, this works for old ones, too), then this kitchen hardware guide is for you!

This guide is packed with everything you could need to know about bar pulls for kitchen cabinets. I’ll cover the rules of kitchen cabinet hardware style, placement, and size. I’ll also go into detail about selecting pulls for doors versus drawers, and I’ll get very specific about answering your question of what size bar pulls for kitchen cabinets.

Let’s dive in!


Just a friendly reminder: This tutorial and any opinions or recommendations are genuinely mine, but this is not a substitute for consulting a professional. I also use affiliate links to earn a commission.


Overwhelmed By Cabinet Hardware Choices? Start Here!

When looking for kitchen cabinet hardware, at first, you may be overwhelmed by the type of hardware options. Let me simplify this for you- there are cabinet knobs and pull handles. To instantly be less overwhelmed by the choices, start by narrowing select either a knob or pull. Doing so removes half of the options making it easier for you to focus on other decisions such as finish, style, and size. 

When you combine all the different cabinet pull options of color and size is a lot of choices. I clearly remember my first kitchen remodel and losing sleep over selecting the right size cabinet pull. It was a big decision, considering I had invested thousands of dollars into new cabinets, and I’m sure you’re feeling this too!

The last thing I wanted was to ruin the overall design by picking the wrong cabinet hardware. Little details like a three-inch pull versus the look of a five-inch pull are the type of little detail that can make or break your final look. It’s also the type of thing that would drive me crazy every day if I didn’t love the size of the cabinet pull I selected. OCD or not, these details matter! 

I’ve learned a few tricks and have several tips to make your cabinet pull decision-making process a bit easier. Let’s start by reviewing a few general kitchen cabinet hardware rules.

How to Simplify Selecting Kitchen Cabinet Hardware

If you’re anything like me, you probably don’t like strict rules, so think of this information as general guidelines to help make your kitchen cabinet pulls selection a little easier. 

Cabinet Hardware Style

The first thing you need to do is select a general style, and my best recommendation is to find similar style hardware that matches your kitchen. Choosing a hardware style for your new kitchen should be easy since you already know your kitchen style, so I suggest sticking with this to achieve a cohesive look!

Unless you’re trying to achieve a unique look, you should keep a similar style throughout the entire room, which goes for the little details like your kitchen cabinet hardware. 

Cabinet Hardware Placement

Don’t overcomplicate the placement of your cabinet hardware because it literally can be placed anywhere! That is unless you’re replacing kitchen cabinet hardware. If you’re working with old cabinets, you must work with the existing placement based on the current screw holes. 

Have you considered painting your kitchen cabinets? Painting your kitchen cabinets opens up your options for different pulls since you can patch the existing screw holes. It’s not as complicated as you might think, especially when you follow my super simple steps. Check out my guide to painting kitchen cabinets.

Cabinet Hardware Size

Finding the right size for your kitchen cabinet hardware involves two components: the aesthetical and functional fit. There are many different size pulls, and you’ll need to consider the overall length and diameter. Looking at the size and overall length of your cabinet is a good place to start knowing that the general rule is that longer pulls can overwhelm a cabinet, and smaller pulls can look misplaced.

You’re working to find the right balance between the size of the hardware and the different sizes of your cabinets and how each pull will look and function.

What Size Bar Pulls for Kitchen Cabinets: Doors

What size bar pulls for kitchen cabinet doors - Tantrums and Tools

Let’s talk specifically about your cabinet door hardware.

Placement: On upper cabinets, you will place the cabinet pull at the bottom of the door, opposite the side of your hinges. On lower cabinets, you will attach the cabinet pull at the upper corner of the door, opposite the side of your hinges.

For a cabinet with a pull-out door, such as your garbage can, cabinet pulls should be attached near the top, center of your cabinet door. Visually this may be different than what you end up doing on the rest of your cabinet doors; however, this placement provides way more stability for you. Using larger hardware for this style door is a good choice because these doors tend to be heavier. A larger pull gives you something sturdy to hold onto when opening and closing the door.

Size: To ensure you are not visually overwhelming the cabinet door, you should use a smaller pull on a small door. So opposite of that is larger doors need larger pulls. Visually, large pulls will not overwhelm large cabinet doors either. 

What Size Bar Pulls for Kitchen Cabinets: Drawers

What size bar pulls for kitchen cabinet drawers - Tantrums and Tools

Let’s talk specifically about your cabinet drawer hardware.

Placement: The fast rule and a good starting point to figure out the best placement for your drawer pull is the rule of thirds. The rule of thirds means if you divide the drawer into three, the hardware will go in the middle section.

This rule does not apply to larger drawers since if your drawer front is particularly long, you may want to consider two drawer pulls instead of just one, so it is easy to open and close the drawer. 

Different things to consider about hardware placement on drawers are wide and narrow drawers. In both cases, when placing your drawer pulls, you can center the pull, or another option is to put the cabinet pull towards the top of the drawer. 

Size: Another way to apply the rule of thirds and a good rule of thumb is to select a pull that is one-third the length of the drawer.

Different things to consider about hardware size for cabinet drawers are narrow drawers will require smaller handles. Larger drawers may also need a smaller-sized pull if you use two pulls instead of one.

What Size Bar Pulls for Kitchen Cabinets: Let’s Talk Numbers

What size bar pulls for kitchen cabinets - Tantrums and Tools

So, what are the best size pulls for your cabinet doors and drawers? Ultimately, it comes down to personal preference, but I, too, like to have a few general rules to guide me in the right direction when shopping and planning a project like this.

Here is the general size of pulls your drawers and doors can visually handle and functionally need:

  • Cabinet Drawer Pull Sizes:
    • Small drawers: 3-4 inches
    • Medium drawers: 4-8 inches
    • Large drawers: 8 inches and beyond
  • Cabinet Door Pull Sizes:
    • Small doors: 3-5 inches
    • Large doors: 5-12 inches

You were wondering what size bar pulls for kitchen cabinets, and I delivered this answer and so much more! Selecting the perfect cabinet hardware can initially seem a little overwhelming, especially since you definitely don’t want to mess up your gorgeous new cabinets by putting a hole in the wrong spot! I truly hope these tips and tricks make your cabinet bar pull decision-making process a bit easier.


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