New year’s resolutions can be about making one small change, and swapping out kitchen cabinet hardware can bring you one step closer to a more design-savvy space. Who knows, it might even nudge you to snack better. Just saying.
2022 was all about mixing metals and brass finishes, but the new year is full of chic kitchen cabinet hardware trends that are as refreshing as they are easy on the eyes. “In 2023, we are experiencing a strong draw toward solid, sturdy hardware that really packs a punch,” says interior designer Amy Storm of Amy Storm & Company in Glen Ellyn, Illinois. “Even the most basic of cabinets can be transformed with the right hardware. Oversized and textured, mixing materials like metal and leather, and using finishes that haven’t been trendy for a long time, are all making a strong argument for being integrated into some fabulous projects.”
With more modern and minimalist kitchens on the horizon, interior designers—like Calvin Tsao, of Tsao & Mckown Architects —are gravitating toward matte metallics to counterbalance all the white kitchen cabinetry. “Matte metallic finishes are clean and elegant,” Tsao says. “The surface softly reflects light to brighten and warm the space.” Tsao implemented the compelling finish in a recent 7 West 57th Street condo project on Billionaires’ Row in Manhattan. Legendary interior architect Thierry Despont added bespoke cabinet hardware by E.R Butler & Co. that stands out with sculptural flair in his 53 West 53 project, highlighting that architectural silhouettes will make more of an impact even if your kitchen is in the suburbs.
Whether you’re looking for a style that leans a bit fanciful, or crave a minimalistic approach, the following eight ideas are sure to inspire you—whether or not they end up preventing you from ordering takeout.
1. Bold touche
Oversized brass pulls shine in this kitchen by Emilie Munroe of San Francisco–based Studio Munroe. Here the curved shape plays off of the cabinet door detailing. And going big is always an excellent way to “add interest to classic architectural detailing in an unexpected yet understated way,” Munroe explains. “This is especially true if you select a finish that is different from the plumbing suite or passage door hardware.”
2. Sleek solutions
On the other hand, in instances in which a backsplash or countertop is the star of the show, subtler pulls reign supreme. “For this modern kitchen, sleek antique brass edge pulls allow your eye to focus on the gorgeous Calacatta viola marble counter and backsplash,” explains Wendy Labrum of Chicago-based Wendy Labrum Interiors.“This style also provides a modern contrast to the vintage architecture in this 1880s Chicago row home.”
3. Historical flair
Go beyond predictable kitchen cabinet hardware and infuse it with a bit of cultural flair, or perhaps something that looks like an artifact. AD 100 designer Young Huh did just that by launching a line of cabinet pulls in partnership with hardware manufacturer Modern Matter. Huh’s visually stimulating designs range from knobs with evil eye motifs to those resembling lotus buds and other inspiration from the Silk Road. By incorporating cameo rings with carnelian carvings, ancient coins, old doors, and the like, the New York–based designer and principal of Young Huh Design bestows a kitchen space with a sense of place that echoes ancient civilizations. “The most successful interiors nod to different geographies and periods,” Huh says. “It helps create enduring design—something I think people want more and more.”
4. Shifting shapes
Mixing metals? That’s so 2022. Instead, why not keep your finish consistent and introduce a few different shapes into your space? Designer Jess Weeth of Weeth Home is a proponent of such an approach, as seen executed in this sunlit kitchen rooted in neutrals. “A mix of knobs, pulls, latches, and cup pulls gives the kitchen a cozy, collected vibe,” the Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, designer says.
5. Jewelry accoutrements
Cabinet pulls will continue to be bolder and funkier in 2023. “Although hardware has always been likened to the jewelry of the home as a place to add personality and details, it has experienced a resurgence in the last few years,” says Sara Hillery of Sara Hillery Interior Design in Richmond, Virginia. “I’m embracing these fun new styles and shapes.” In a client’s home, Hillery used Modern Matter brass and customized Amazonite pulls to infuse even more color into this green bar, complementing the ceiling wallpaper and glass beads on the chandelier. She adds, “These blue pulls strike just the right balance of whimsy and inspiration in a classic form.”
6. Versatile matte black
Black matte kitchen fixtures have been popular for a while, and now the finish is sneaking into kitchen cabinet hardware. Glenn Midnet, Morgan Bratcher, and Eliety Perez of Design West in Naples, Florida, opted to pair two-tone cabinetry with matte black fronted mounted hardware. “The black finish contrasts with the warm stained cabinetry it’s mounted on while cohesively tying together the deep ebony finish framing the space,” Midnet says. The hue also plays nicely with the quartz backsplash to tie together this cooking space.
7. Whimsical colors
Don’t hesitate to go for colorful fixtures. Yes, metals like brass are classic, and lucite pulls are glamorous, but a pop of color is where it’s at in 2023. Introduce a touch of whimsy into your kitchen with turquoise pulls that pop against white slab cabinets, as seen here in Parisian flat designed by Fabrizio Casiraghi. Turquoise and terra-cotta are a winning combination, so the hue complements the tiled flooring wonderfully too.
8. Warm brass extensions
Warm brass pulls by Richelieu shine in this kitchen by Gonzalo Bueno, the Dallas-based cofounder of Ten Plus Three. According to Bueno, this finish will be having a major moment in 2023. “It adds so much character to clean and edited spaces, making them feel warmer and more special,” the designer explains.