When creating a custom kitchen that reflects your own personal style, adding custom hardware can add the perfect finishing touch. While there are many different varieties of custom hardware designs already available, such as artistic hand-crafted drawer pulls and handles for kitchen cabinets, these can often be expensive. Designing your own custom hardware is an economical and fun alternative that can add even more personalization to the kitchen.
Designing Kitchen Hardware with Polymer Clay
Polymer clay is a wonderful material to use when crafting custom hardware. This material is easy to work with, comes in a wide variety of colors, and is quite durable once it is dried. Polymer clay can also be coated with a varnish finish when dried to make it more beautiful as well as easy to keep clean. One technique for making custom drawer knobs is to use a simple wooden knob as a base. Then, cover the knob with a thin rolled sheet of the polymer clay, adding additional pieces of clay as desired to create the look you want. Before baking, poke a few small holes in the back of the knob, to prevent bubbles from forming during the baking process. Once the knobs are dried, they can be coated with two coats of varnish to provide extra durability, allowing ample drying time between coats.
Painting Hardware for a Decorator Look
Another method of creating artistic customized drawer pulls and handles involves painting store-bought hardware. Wood knobs and handles with a wooden portion work best for this technique, but you can also paint metal hardware as long as you use enamels designed for metal. This method offers a lot of flexibility, as you are limited only by your ideas and artistic talent. Depending on the type of paint used, a clear coating can be used on the knobs after the paint is dry to provide additional durability.
Ceramic or Glass Tile Hardware
Small one inch ceramic or glass mosaic tiles can be used to create beautiful drawer pulls for the kitchen. If you use tiles that match what was used for the backsplash area, your customized hardware will coordinate beautifully. To make the drawer pulls, select one small tile for each pull, and place face down on a protected work surface. Then cut a half inch piece of half inch diameter wood dowel for each pull, drilling a small eighth inch hole vertically through the dowel so that you will have a way of screwing the drawer pull to the cabinets. Using a strong epoxy, glue a piece of dowel to each tile and let dry. Attach to the cabinet doors with screws. Another similar approach is to use a piece of smooth beach or river rock instead of the tile, which can produce interesting hardware pieces with a very natural look.
Other Types of Custom Hardware
There is almost no limit to the types of materials you can use to create custom hardware pieces for your kitchen cabinets. Look around the house for inspiration. Wooden blocks, interesting sea shells or even small wooden figures or toys can all be used to give your kitchen a custom look by using them to create hardware pieces for your cabinets.
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