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A handle on design

A screwdriver and some thought can give your dressers a quick new look

A screwdriver and some thought can give your dressers a quick new look

October 13, 2008|By CRYSTAL SCHELLE

You've been planning for months on purchasing new furniture.

Of course, that was before what happened on Wall Street affected Main Street. So that means the money you earmarked for a new set of bedroom furniture is now going to more important things such as the mortgage and groceries.

But don't get down. Something as simple as replacing your drawer knobs can be a cost-effective way to change the look of your furniture. You can also unify a room of mismatched furniture by painting or staining items and then replacing the hardware with matching decorative drawer knobs.

First, some vocabulary. Knobs are different from drawer pulls. A knob is a single, stand-alone, often round piece of hardware that is made for a single hole. Pulls are attached to drawers with two holes side by side, usually a few inches apart. This article will focus on knobs, but much of this also applies to pulls.

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Drawer knobs come in an array of shapes, colors, sizes and materials. Traditional knobs are still sold, but why bother? Add a touch of class or whimsy to your room.

At Lowe's and The Home Depot, I was able to find a nice selection of drawer pulls in brass, cast iron, ceramic, pewter, nickel and crystal. They also came in a variety of sizes, shapes and objects.

Both stores had a board of special order pieces above the bins. There were blue and green crystal, iron pulls that looked like lizards or twigs, and fun ideas for children's rooms.

If you're looking for antique knobs, search flea markets and yard sales. This is hit or miss, though. I tried, but my search didn't garner a single item.

To replace knobs, you're only going to need a simple Phillips screwdriver. Be mindful that you might have to do some touch up on the furniture where the original knob has been. If that is the case, you might be able to use paint or a furniture crayon to cover up any chipping. Or you just might have to rethink your knob.

The price for a single knob (they are only sold as singles) starts at about $3 and become more expensive depending on size and material. But updating your furniture without spending thousands of dollars? Priceless.

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