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Handleless Kitchen Cabinet Design: Yes or No?

Posted in: Kitchen Ideas
By Oriana Kirby
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Handleless Kitchen Cabinet Design: Yes or No?

Nowadays, we are striving to get that sleek, minimalist look in our kitchens, where every line is in its place. This made way for a new kitchen design: handleless cabinets. Still, are they a good idea? And when would they be a bad choice? Well, here are a couple of aspects you should consider.

The Good Side

There are a few reasons why you may want to say “yes” to the handleless kitchen cabinet design, including:

  • It Saves Space Visually

Handles have a way of making a kitchen look cluttered, even though they are technically not an extra; they are something heavily used. That being said, in the majority of the cases, handles take the attention away from the cabinets themselves and other kitchen decorations.

Handleless Kitchen Cabinet

“The trend for handleless kitchen designs is still leading the way, with homeowners searching for appliances with handleless doors to deliver a sleek, seamless and uninterrupted look while helping to create a feeling of space,” says Miele GB product Manager, Max McCormick.

  • It Is Safer

In a large kitchen, handles protruding from the cabinets may not bother you. However, things change with smaller kitchens, where you can easily bump into one of the handles as you are trying to make way. This is especially true if you have knob-type handles, as they are lengthier.

With handleless kitchen cabinets, this problem is gone. As there are no handles protruding from the doors, even if you bump directly into the cabinet door, you won’t risk hurting yourself. This is especially useful if you have kids that tend to run around a lot.

  • It Is Aesthetically Pleasing

Perhaps the main reason why people go for handleless kitchen cabinets is that they look overall great in a kitchen. They do not have any unsightly handles, and you will obtain that contemporary-modern design you’ve been looking for. Plus, thanks to the absence of handles, you’ll be able to put the attention on other kitchen décor pieces.

The Bad Side

While there are multiple advantages, there are also situations in which the handleless kitchen cabinet design might not be a very good choice for you. This can include:

  • The Cabinets Can Get Dirty Easily

The main problem is that with the handles gone, you will have to touch the next close thing to open the cabinets: the doors themselves. Imagine if this need would appear while you are cooking, and your hands were all dirty or greasy. All of that grease would transfer to your cabinets and, depending on the surface, it may be quite difficult to get off. Not to mention that certain finishes might make the grime more visible. 

“The material, finish and color all need to be carefully considered to avoid staining and a polished film which won’t be fully removable no matter how much you clean. Low sheen cabinets help to prevent marks, also lighter colors are better than darker colors. Natural wood and steel make great finishes as they’re easy to keep clean and any wear actually adds to the character of the finish. Both can easily be re-finished as well,” says David Conlon of En Masse Bespoke Interiors.

  • They May Damage Easier

Kitchen handles get a lot of grab traffic, which is why they can fade or get damaged in time. To maintain that seamless and clean look, the owner would need to replace the handles every few years. That being said, this is the exact thing that protects the actual door of the kitchen cabinet from being damaged.

Whether you get a pull-out or a push-out kitchen cabinet, you still need to touch the door directly. This will make it much easier for the door to chip or to go through discoloration. And unlike cabinet handles, the doors are not as easy to replace, so your only option is to replace the cabinets altogether.

The Bottom Line

For some people, handleless kitchen cabinets may be a definite yes. They are safer, they save space. That being said, they also tend to get dirty easily, and continuous touching might make them prone to premature damage. Consider your kitchen and overall home needs before you choose this design for your next project.

6 months ago