...because home doesn't happen overnight.

I really need to get a FAQ page together and have it as a tab on my home page.  It seems you all have a lot of the same questions.  Until that FAQ page shows up {please, Fairy Blog Mother?}, I’ll try to answer the most popular ones in the form of a post.  In just the last few weeks, I’ve had more than one question about the measurements of our kitchen cabinet hardware.  They are the stainless steel IKEA LANSA handles and I blogged about adding them to the cabinets here. They’re available in packs of two and cost ranges from $6.99 to $9.99 per pack.  They’re suitable for cabinet doors or drawers 1/2″ to 3/4″ thick.  They come in several lengths for various types of use. The sizes listed on IKEA’s website and packaging are the distances from screw hole to screw hole.  The length of the actual handle {longer than the hole spacing measurement} is listed under ‘product dimensions’ on the IKEA website.  We only used 2 sizes in our kitchen:  10 1/16″ and 6 1/4″…which seems to now be listed as 6 5/16″.

On our taller 42″ upper cabinets we installed the 10 1/16″ handles…

Above the microwave and refrigerator we used the 6 1/4″…

On the wider lower drawers we added the 10 1/16″…

On the narrower drawers to either side of the stove we added the 6 1/4″… {Note: the bottom door is really a pull-out trash/recycling center so we placed the hardware horizontally for ease of function.}

Finally, on the kitchen island we mixed things up.  The wide drawers have the 10 1/16″ handles while the cabinet doors have the 6 1/4″ handles.

I think the thing to keep in mind while picking cabinet hardware is the width/height of each door and drawer.  Personally, I like the hardware to mimic the size of the cabinet or drawer.  A big ol’ door would look awfully naked with a teeny handle.  Likewise, a smallish drawer would look pretty silly with a crazy big pull.  Keep things to scale.  You may even want to buy several sizes and hold them up to the doors/drawers before making a commitment.  Just return the ones you don’t use. I’d also suggest buying a few extras {we have 2 backup handles of each size we used} in case something happens to the handles and they need replaced.  If it’s been several years since you installed your hardware, there’s a good chance it’ll be discontinued.

Adding hardware to plain stock cabinets and even older outdated cabinets is a cheap upgrade.  We love ours.  Try it yourself!

FYI – I was not compensated in any way for this post.  I just love sharing great products!

images: all Dana Miller for House*Tweaking



Your tip about extras is such a good one — It’s not something you would necessarily think of until you needed a replacement … Thanks!


Love your kitchen..and I am sure I’ll love the one you redo in your soon to be newer- older- smaller home. We, too jumped on the smaller is better. We actually had a contract on a smaller home and we were going to downsize considerably..from 3200 4bdr, 3.5 bath to about 1900 3bdr, 2bath. It was going to be bought while we stayed in this house to get our highschool son graduated. While we were in the big house we were going to get the small cottage all done and ready. But then the structural engineers plan came in and well 18K to build 40 piers and have to have the house completely lifted up and put back down sort of scared the heck out of us. So, please get an inspection on the older ones..they do seem fine to the naked eye- even to old historic home renovators like us(we’ve done two from the 1920’s) and we didn’t even see that coming. Glad we found it before we bought it and were able to back out of it.
Here is to you finding your dream life with a new house thrown in the mix :)


They look great. They would have looked great in our home if we would have had enough gumption to try something a little bold. It’s something to look forward to .


Tammy – Thanks for the advice! It’s very possible that we may purchase an older home, so a home inspection would be a must.


Oh, thanks for sharing about the hardware! I was one of the people who asked about the hardware and this info is great!! Your kitchen is spectacular!!! I am hoping to use the same pulls on our kitchen because our kitchen cupboards have absolutely no detail – just very long straight cupboards and I think the handles will be just the right modern looking accent. I like the way they look on your more detailed cupboard doors also. It will be interesting to watch you decorate another place if you do downgrade. Have fun – and we’ll all enjoy the results!


I love your IKEA hardware. This was especially helpful because we are thinking of using IKEA cabinets in our new (old) home. Something flat and modern, no raised panel…

I just read your previous posts, and I want to say congratulations. We recently downsized: We were living in an affluent neighborhood (my hometown, actually) and we were beginning to feel the crunch of “keeping up with the Jones’.” We didn’t want to raise our kids with that lifestyle, so we sold and moved to our dream town (where DH and I had gone to university.) I think our friends all thought we were crazy, even though we had been talking about it for years.

Right now, we’re waiting for a few renovations to be done to our new (old) house before we move in, but I’ve been feeling that it’s the “right” decision for quite some time. I’m so glad we did it.

Funny thing is, we moved to San Luis Obispo — “the happiest place in America” according to Oprah! : )

Good luck with your transition — it will all turn out for the best.

I love the modern hardware. This is what we have on most of our cabinets throughout the house. Though, you can get smaller ones from Home Depot for like $15 or $20 for a pack of 10. I think they’re 3 1/2 inches from screw hole to screw hole…


Love your kitchen and the new hardware. I agree that the size of the hardware needs to match the size of the cabinets. I remodeled my kitchen a couple of years ago. It is amazing what a fresh coat of paint and new hardware can do to old cabinets. Thanks for sharing.

Debra Kline


It’s amazing how a hardware change and completely alter the look of a kitchen! I especially love the ones you chose–the exact same I plan on purchasing!


I love these pulls & your site! Your house is just beautiful. Very inspiring!


Love the look!!! Thanks for sharing all that information.

One other question for you, did you install these handles yourselves? We need to install ours, but our door & drawer fronts don’t work with those plastice template ones that they sell in the stores. How did you meausre everything out if you didn’t use a template? Thanks. :D


Jen – We did install the hardware ourselves, er, actually Handy Hubby did. We used the plastic template from IKEA. See that here….



That’s my favorite hardware, but our kitchen cabinets are the kind that don’t even HAVE any hardware (yes, THOSE – ha!). :) So I replaced the hardware on my filing cabinet with that kind of hardware instead!


R8chel – Our cabinets didn’t have hardware to begin with. Handy Hubby drilled holes using a template from IKEA to add the handles.


Dana – thanks for the link to your IKEA template. I will have to check that one out and see if it will work with our cabinets. I don’t think our cabinets are as flat on the fronts as yours are. We bought templates from Ace Hardward, but they don’t work well with the kind of cabinet fronts we have. Especially the drawer fronts. Hopefully the IKEA template is made a little differently then the Ace Hardward ones. Thanks!!! I might finally get knobs and pulls on my cabinets now. :D


Did you paint your kitchen cabinets yourself? Want to do it but scared won’t get a smooth finish so looking for any great tips!


Everyone I asked about cabinet hardware had a different answer. You answered all of my questions! My cabinets are very much like yours and I am taking your advice on this one. Just a note–Ebay is a great place to get great deals on hardware.


When you give the measurements of your pulls, is that overall length or hole to hole?