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What you need to know to replace a drawer pull

How to measure drawer pulls

Drawer pulls and Handles date back to the 17th century. Throughout furniture history, handle styles have evolved and changed. The differences are found in: design, size and application. To tell age and time period of drawer pulls, look at appearance and construction of handles. Styles include Chippendale Drawer Pulls, Hepplewhite Handles, Victorian Pulls, Arts and Crafts Mission Pulls and the classic Bail Pull, to name just a few. Choose handles that are authentically reproduced. They should look like original handles from that time period.

Drawer pulls made before the industrial revolution were not mass produced. They were influenced by individual tastes and regional characteristics. They often had slight style variations.   During the 19th century handles became mass produced.  These advanced manufacturing processes created handles more uniform in size and shape. More patterns were made.  A vast assortment of drawer pulls was made. The sheer volume and variety of drawer pulls and handles produced before 1940 was huge

Only the most popular antique handles are reproduced today. This is due to continuing design trends and limited interest in antique furniture. There are many replacement handles on the market today. Sometimes it can be near impossible, to find an exact match for a missing handle. However there are often many suitable replacements, which will look authentic on furniture. The appearance, weight and size of our reproduction handles mimics originals of that time period.

How to measure drawer pulls

List of criteria to consider when replacing drawer pulls

  1. Drawer Pull Boring Measurement and Overall size
  2. Number of Drawer Pulls needed to Complete Project
  3. Style of Handle suitable for furniture or cabinetry

Boring and Overall Measurements

Boring dimension is the mounting size for a drawer pull. Drawer must have two parallel mounting holes. This dimension is also referred to as center to center or centers.

 

  • 3” is the most common boring size.
  • Most antique handles have a 2” – 4” boring
  • Boring sizes typically increase in ½” increments.
  • Some handles are produced in a few boring sizes, others in just one size
  • Number of boring sizes produced, for a particular handle, is determined by number of sizes original handle was produced in. 
  •  

    Determine Boring by measuring distance from center of drilled mounting hole to center of other drilled mounting hole. Be sure not to measure from end to end.

    Overall:  measure width and height dimension at widest and tallest point. It is often easiest to do this from the back of the drawer pull.

    How do I know if drawer pull will fit my furniture or cabinet drawers?

    The boring dimension is the most critical measurement, when replacing drawer pulls. Both the replacement drawer pulls and the furniture drawers must have the same boring size. 

    The overall size is a consideration if the drawers are shallow. Drawer must be tall enough to accommodate drawer pull. Check to see if there is any scaring or wear left from previous handles. If there is: you ideally need a handle that will cover any marks left by previous hardware.

    Considerations for new furniture and cabinets?

    For new applications scale should be a primary size-determining factor. Typically, the smaller the drawer…..the smaller the handle that is used. Furniture and cabinets made from walnut and mahogany are often more formal than items made from pine, cherry or oak.

    Matching Style of furniture to style of drawer pulls provides a harmonious completed appearance. Ideally the furniture style, size and intended purpose will narrow the choices. 

     


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