One of the most exciting, and potentially liberating, things about refitting a kitchen is that you can begin from the bottom up – a clean slate if you will. All that you had taken for granted in the room is about to undergo a rethink, including the cabinet handles. Not only will you need to rethink the type of handles with the handle style, but you can also reconsider if you want handles at all!
You may know from the beginning whether you wish to remove unit handles from the kitchen, or you may still be uncertain. A great deal of the decision depends on the style of the kitchen being built. If you are planning a traditional country kitchen or shaker style, then you will require cabinet handles. The look of these designs depends greatly on an attractive handle to complete the kitchen. However, if you are opting for a minimalist or modern kitchen design, handleless cabinets may have crossed your mind once or twice.
So, what are the reasons for a customer and designer leaning toward a kitchen without any cabinet handles? This article will help answer that particular question.
1. A Sense of Style
Without any cabinet handles to interrupt the line of a wall unit, there is a wider scope for colour and contrast. Modern kitchen designs seek to include a splash of colour in their appearance, especially on the glass splash backs which can then be easily matched with cabinets where handles are not included. Similarly, the minimalist monochrome design can appear uncluttered and clean when the lines are not obstructed by cabinet handles.
2. The Layout
The removal of kitchen cabinet handles often goes hand-in-hand with open plan living. This is due to the fact that the smooth cabinet fronts promote a flow of dining and kitchen room space. It is also seen that handleless doors can increase the space and light in both small and large living spaces.
3. Cleaning Options
The best thing about a flat-fronted cabinet is the ease of cleaning. As the cabinet surface no longer has a handle, it is much easier and more convenient to clean. However, the handleless door can attract debris in the groove. Of course, this will depend on the depth of groove as moulded channels tend to gather more debris than the fully handless design. It is true that handles also attract dirt, so neither option is fully dirt-free.
4. The Practicality Factor
If you are opting for handleless cabinets, the chances are that you will receive fewer knocks. This is true in when in the kitchen (knocking elbows and knuckles as you move around the area), and for children throughout the house who seem to head directly for cabinet handles. The decision to use a handless cabinet alternative opens a scope for the work surface to remain flush with the fronts of the cabinet units. The handled doors typically require worktop overhang to allow for cleaning, but handleless option provides a seamless line from cabinet to worktop.
So, if you are opting to remove the handles from your kitchen cabinets, you need to consider how you will open the cabinets. Which method of non-handle opening is the most suitable? This is truly dependent on your priorities and design concept. The below techniques are all options available.
1. The J-Grip
The J-Grip is a moulded groove in the front area of the cabinet door. Doors can be difficult to handle when the channel is quite small; therefore, it can result in making the top of the door weak and vulnerable to cracks from frequent use. The J-Grip can help avoid these problems.
2. The Push Click
The push click refers to a mechanised opening system allowing the cabinet to be seamlessly placed against the table. It is great for certain designs, but it can be a problem to open if the mechanism fails.
3. Mix ‘N’ Match
While there is no rule against mixing handles with handleless cabinets, there are various modern designs where handle doors are mixed among the handleless units for a unique effect.
4. Fully Handleless
Typically reinforced with aluminium, the fully handleless option utilises a rail concealed in the door to withstand constant usage. This option is easy to use, offers a clean edge, and is the most durable alternative.