Styling: Boost Your Pulling Power With Handsome Handles

There are lots of different knobs and handles out there, ready to grace your drawers and cupboards. Here are just a few of the best ideas...

By Joanna Simmons  / Courtesy of

Gone are the days when handles were roughly D-shaped and generally made of metal. Today, there is an enormous variety of knobs and handles to choose from in a massive range of shapes, sizes and materials. This round-up will give you a taste of the possibilities but remember – with this much choice, finding the right handles and knobs is rarely just an open and shut case!

Seek out circles
Black handles against pure-white wardrobes look graphic and bold, and are real showstoppers. To boost their impact, choose a large design, like these semicircular handles that form a neat circle when the doors are shut.

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Twist and shout
These beautiful knotted handles, in orange leather, make a really fresh and exciting alternative to the humble knob. They’re a curvaceous, original fixture that brings welcome shape and movement to wardrobe doors.

String them along
A low-fi alternative to a standard metal drawer handle, these are made simply from lengths of tough string, knotted in the centre. The idea could be reproduced using fine leather straps or twine made from natural fibres, too.

Take the long view
Supersize your handles and they will become a stylish addition to your run of wardrobes. These long wooden designs are an eye-catching feature, breaking up the bank of white cupboard doors and leading the eye up and down, boosting the feeling of height in the room.

Go for barn style
For a gritty edge, source handles that reference agricultural or industrial buildings. These large-scale cast-iron handles bring a sense of weight to a door and will feel great in the hand when used, too.

See stars
Who says knobs have to be round? They can be almost any shape, including these dramatic starburst designs on a chest of drawers repurposed as a vanity unit. They are probably not enormously comfortable to grip, however, so perhaps reserve knobs like this for cabinets or storage that is not in everyday use.

Bring in an accent colour
Dark, sludgy paint shades aren’t going out of fashion any time soon – and they work so well with vibrant accent colours, too.

Here, children’s coats and shoes do a beautiful job of adding hits of contrast to the slatey grey storage, but those pink flower-shaped knobs are a brilliant long-term fixture.

Shine on
Simple glass knobs, available in a wide range of coloured or clear glass, bring added glamour and sparkle to a cabinet or cupboard. Go as bold or as subtle as you like.

Picture this
Seek out knobs with patterns or pictures on them for a little flash of detail on your cupboard doors. Ceramic knobs are widely available with everything from stripes and spots to clock faces on them, so choose a design to bring out the character of your scheme.

Find out six things to consider when choosing cupboard handles

Branch out
Handles sculpted and shaped to resemble objects found in nature are widely available – think sticks, leaves and pine cones. These lovely tree-shaped designs are particularly fine and bring sinuous Art Nouveau style to these solid cupboard doors.

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