I mentioned in my last post that I’d had a difficult time deciding on hardware for the Bluestone Cottage kitchen cabinetry, so I thought it might be fun to show you the ones that almost made the cut! Hardware is kind of like tile and lighting—there is SO MUCH GOOD STUFF out there in the world, so saying yes to one feels like rejecting all the other ones. Other ones which possibly you like more on their own, but less when you consider how they’d really fit into the context of your space…but you want them anyway. Incidentally, this is also how you end up low-key addicted to renovating kitchens because if you can’t use it here, maybe you can use it there. YA KNOW?
Omg Daniel, relax. You’re just showing them some hardware; it doesn’t have to be a whole THING.
Sorry, I have to make it about me. This goes for hardware as well as everything.
Please don’t look at me that way! You knew what you were getting into when you opened this post. Can we get on with it now? I’m TRYING to tell you something unimportant.
First, let’s take a look at this perfect thing that the genius powerhouses at Plain English did. Everything Plain English does is perfect. Like literally how are they so good. (psssst. They sell cabinets in the States now. Just saying.)
I’m neither cool nor rich enough to execute a kitchen like this, but I did spend some time looking at various British kitchens as I pulled together the Bluestone kitchen (deVol, of course, is another favorite if you, like me, enjoy feeling like trash from time to time). The Brits are just nailing that Downton Abby Victorian kitchen thing so hard, and I feel like Bluestone wanted a little of that vibe. I pulled this particular image above because check out that mix of hardware! We have bin pulls, knobs, AND drop pulls! MADNESS. The British! Are out! Of control!
And yet somehow, it works. Some things just aren’t for us to know.
Anyway. I had 15 drawers and 6 doors to glitz up. I think this kitchen needed to stay consistent—doors treated one way, drawers another—to keep things a little interesting but not become a point of distraction. I put that image up there because that’s what I kept thinking about—how any 9 pieces of hardware would look on that one bank of cabinetry, which you can see from the front door. Pressure!!
21 pieces of hardware isn’t a lot for a kitchen, but I also didn’t want to spend a ton, so all of these options are under $15 a piece, and mostly a lot less. Let’s go.
1. Amerock Burnished Brass Oval Cup Pull, $4.83/piece. About as no-nonsense as a cup pull can get, and by the end I felt like the room could take a little more excitement. But it’s nice, affordable, and comes in loads of other finishes. The burnished, faux-patina kind of finish was more convincing than expected, but it was just a little too shiny for me to be sold. I wonder if that shine could be knocked down with a chemical stripper or something without affecting the coloring.
2. Sumner Street Home Antique Brass Drop Pull, $4.06/piece. Surprised me too! But scroll up to that Plain English kitchen! This one is definitely all about context. You see this style a lot in those British kitchens, and they look really good. But here, they looked a little crowded on the slimmer rail of my Shaker-style doors, and it seemed like they’d lead to fingers touching the cabinet more than something that doesn’t move. But I’m glad to know this option is out there, and super affordable!
3. Franklin Brass Victorian Glass Arch Pull, $5.20/piece. I really love glass hardware. It’s just so PRETTY. You see it a lot on old furniture and cabinetry, and these pulls and the coordinating knobs ($3.67/piece) are basically exact reproductions of antique ones I’ve picked up here and there for stuff (like my bathroom hamper cabinet, or the original knob on that little closet door in my office-turned-laundry-room, respectively!). And cheap! They come in a 5-pack, which I bought from Lowe’s but doesn’t seem to be for sale online anymore, but you can also find them on Amazon and elsewhere. Perfect for so many things! To me they just felt a little precious given the concentration (think of the 9 drawers!), like too much of a good thing.
4. Brainerd Wood Cabinet Knob, $1.48/piece. Ahhhh, the wood knob. People love it. People hate it. It’s been around forever but—thanks to those Brits—has become kind of the hardware du jour when painted the same color as the cabinets. Admittedly, it looks great. I have two hesitations. The first is keeping them clean—seems like a chore. Second thing: you may recall years ago when I renovated my kitchen, I made my own wood knobs out of a dowel. This is obviously not that, but after a while those knobs started to spin and spin when you grasped them, and eventually might come off in your hand, and it was super annoying and felt unsustainable. I also had this problem with wooden knobs on my antique dresser. So I don’t know. I have trust issues and also they felt kinda too not-there for this kitchen. She needs a little glitz!
5. Lew’s Hardware Glass Bin Pull, $14.31/piece. By far our most expensive option, but IT WAS REALLY NICE. I put these on the original mood board and felt so confident they’d be the ones. There’s that really adorable glass/metal knob that goes with them ($8.55/piece) and they seemed super well-made. The glass was nice and thick, a little imperfect in a good way…I dunno, I really like them. There are a ton of glass options like this available at Lowe’s—I also considered this green version, this milk glass version, this SCALLOPED green version (CUTE)…all so nice. I don’t LOVE the shape of the metal part of the pull—can’t quite put my finger on why—but it’s fine and I love the glass part. At the end of the day, it seemed like maybe a lot of look with a bunch of them together, and I would have had to field too many comments about whether they’d get all gross and dirty on the inside surface, and I wouldn’t know either way because I don’t live here, and my credibility would be destroyed. And we can’t have that.
Ultimately, I went with that one that I just sort of threw in the online shopping cart last-minute, not really thinking I’d dig it. Ha! I dug it! This Amerock Golden Champagne Rectangular Cup Pull ($9.27/piece) is nice and sturdy, I like that “golden champagne” finish (you know, everyone’s favorite alloy! champagne!). They come in a ton of other finishes, too. They just felt classic but fresh at the same time, and for some reason the exposed flathead screws got me all hot and bothered. Then, because I have to drag everyone into my shit, I asked Juliet her opinion and she told me they looked like car door handles and I liked them even MORE because I live to piss everyone off. Of course, because I wasn’t thinking I’d choose them when I ordered them, I neglected to get coordinating knobs. Whoopsie. I ALMOST did the painted wooden knobs just for those 6 doors, which would have looked nice, but figured I’d check my local Lowe’s to see if they had anything good in stock while I was there anyway, and these knobs were right there, and the metals match (I know they look different in this photo, but I swear that’s a trick of the light), and so I got them.
I know. WHAT a harrowing story that was not worth your time or mine. Social isolation has made me so chatty.
OH AND BY THE WAY—thank you so much for all of the kind comments and messages when the Bluestone kitchen went up on the blog last week! I love this kitchen and worked hard on it, so hearing that so many of you like it too made me so so happy! Juliet and I took a few post-project-omg-I’m-dead days off and I wasn’t great about responding to things, but if you left a question in the comments on the last post, I think I answered them all now!
The point is, you guys continue to be the best around, and I don’t know how I got so lucky. Thank you.
P.S.—while this kitchen project was generously sponsored by my long-time partners at Lowe’s, this is not a sponsored post. I just thought it might be fun! In any case, all thoughts, feelings, opinions, judgments, condemnations, endorsements, drama, foul language, clean language, opinions on British people and their knobs (wink, wink), and run-on sentences are my own.