It’s true that good aging-in-place design gives older adults the freedom to live at home safely and independently. But that doesn’t mean safety gets to kick style to the curb.
How your parent feels about their home has a big impact on their mental wellbeing – just as big of an impact as aging-in-place upgrades have on their physical wellbeing.
When I’m working on an aging-in-place remodel with a client, I rely on important safety features like hardware and handles to also serve as the decorative elements of the project. The right cabinet pulls, for instance, can greatly reduce the arthritis pain your parent feels when opening a cabinet or drawer. And they also provide an excellent opportunity to give your cabinetry a punch of style.
Black Cabinet Pulls are a Safe, Stylish, and Easy Aging-in-Place Upgrade
Black cabinet hardware is leading the way among residential design trends everywhere and in every type of home – not just in aging-in-place home design. As you design and remodel your an aging-in-place home for your parent or loved-one, you can easily jump in on this modern design trend.
What I love about cabinetry pulls, beyond their big design impact, is that they’re inexpensive and easy to install. And, for the aging-in-place home, the right pulls make a big safety impact–like making a drawer easier and less painful to open.
There are several black cabinet pulls on my list of favorites. But, before I share those with you, we have to cover the basics of cabinet pull safety.
Look for Black Cabinet Pulls That Meet ADA Safety Standards
Before you start your search for a modern black cabinet pull, know what signs to look for so you know you’re purchasing a pull that’s both stylish and safe. When it comes to aging-in-place safety, look no further than the standards put forth by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
The ADA holds cabinetry hardware to an exceptionally high safety standard in the aging-in-place home. For a cabinet pull to be considered ADA-compliant, it must meet the following criteria:
- Is operable with one hand
- Does not require tight grasping, pinching or twisting of the wrist
- The force required to operate the hardware does not exceed 5 lbs.
Most major hardware manufacturers identify whether their cabinet pulls are ADA-compliant right in the product’s description. This is a great place to start your search. I take it a step further, though, and hunt for key features of cabinet pulls that I know are safe and comfortable. When I’m remodeling cabinets, I’m looking for pulls that check these boxes:
- Curved Edge
- Ergonomic Shape
- Thick Pull Area
- Length of 3 Inches or More
Wider is better when it comes to cabinet pulls. If the pull isn’t wide enough, your parent’s hand can be pinched or even stuck when they go to open the cabinet or drawer.
A U-shaped cabinet pull is usually a safe bet. They’re typically easier to grasp and their shape gives you extra space between the pull and the face of the cabinet.
For even more on cabinet pulls for your aging-in-place home, take a look at an article I wrote about Cabinet Pulls for Aging in Place. In it, I go into even more detail about what makes a cabinet pull safe for older adults.
The Best Black Cabinet Pulls for Aging-in-Place
Now that you can spot an ADA-compliant cabinet pull from a mile away, let’s talk style.
During the hunt for the perfect cabinet pull, you’ll have some decisions to make. The first is the hardware finish. Most black cabinet pulls out there today come with a matte black finish. This is the most common finish you’ll find and the one that’s dominated residential design trends over the last few years. Basically, if your parent’s design style can be summed up as ‘farmhouse modern with a touch of elegance’, look no further than matte black.
While less popular and a bit harder to find, there are other black finish types out there. The most common behind matte black is black bronze. Black bronze has a noticeable shine to it just like its cousin, the oil rubbed bronze finish. I suggest this finish to my clients when they want a modern look but still don’t want to stray too far away from the traditional styles they’ve lived with for years.
The third black finish I work with is black nickel. Black nickel pulls are much less common than pulls of other finishes, but they’ll look timeless in any aging-in-place home.
Now, the fun part! Let’s take a look at a few of my favorite black cabinet pulls for your aging-in-place home.
Matte Black Cabinet Pulls for the Aging-in-Place Home
Schaub has classic modern style down to a science. This simple matte black pull will add a sophisticated look to your parent’s cabinetry. It’s also packed with age-in-place-friendly safety features, including over 4-inches of overall length and rounded edges. I also love this handle’s depth – it sits high up off the cabinet so there’s plenty of clearance for larger hands.
Emtek is another quality cabinet pull brand worth checking out. Their Freestone Pull in Flat Black is a subtle and elegant pull option. It comes in multiple lengths, including this 6-inch version. If you have the space for a wider drawer pull or longer cabinet pull, this size gives your parent some wiggle room when they go to open and close the cabinets.
Another Emtek cabinet pull that I love for aging-in-place is their Alexander Pull in Flat Black. It’s over 5 inches long and wide enough to create a firm grip – an especially important feature if your parent has large hands prone to arthritis pain.
Lizavo’s flat black arched cabinet pull deserves a mention on my list of favorites because of its design. As a 3-inch pull – on the smaller side of the cabinet pull spectrum – its arched design creates more clearance than you’d typically have with this sized pull. If you’re limited by space, the Lizavo arched flat black pull may be the right solution.
This pull from Top Knobs is a fantastic choice for an aging-in-place kitchen if you want your cabinetry hardware to stand out and make a statement. And because of the thickness of its handle, it’s the perfect choice for larger hands. Your parent will be able to fully grip the handle and do so comfortably.
When you want your cabinetry pulls to serve as statement pieces, Amerock has you covered with their Mergence Pull. Its matte black pull handle is mounted to the cabinet with polished chrome legs. It’s unlike any other black cabinet pull out there right now. And, it’s as comfortable as it is stunning. The pull handle is 5 1/6-inch in length giving your parent’s hand plenty of space to grab.
For even more matte black cabinet pulls for your aging-in-place home, check out this list of ADA-Compliant Matte Black Cabinet Pulls.
Black Bronze Cabinet Pulls for the Aging-in-Place Home
Amerock’s signature bar pull in black bronze is understated elegant design at its best. This cabinet pull will work well for just about any aging-in-place kitchen that wants to shine a little luster on an otherwise modest space. And, thanks to its round, wide bar, it will help your parent avoid arthritis pain when they open and close their cabinets.
Another of my favorite black cabinet pull handles for aging-in-place is this pull from St. Vincent. Here they’ve placed a slightly polished black bronze finish onto a well-textured pull handle. If your parent suffers from sore, arthritic hands or just has some difficulty gripping door handles, the texture and shape of this pull may be the way to go.
Black Nickel Cabinet Pulls for the Aging-in-Place Home
Cosmas is one of the new cabinet hardware makers that offers a quality line of cabinet pulls in a black nickel finish that work well with aging-in-place design. If you’re interested in black nickel, take a look at these three Cosmas cabinet pulls.
Cosmas is one of the few cabinet hardware makers offering a wide, easy-to-grip black nickel cabinet pull that works for the aging-in-place home. This pull is ½-inch wide and over 4 inches in length, making it great for even larger hands. The black nickel finish is perfect for industrial-style kitchens and would look good just about anywhere. My favorite feature, however, is its tapered handle. Wider in the middle, this pull handle makes opening and closing the cabinets much easier and less painful.
Cosmas also offers its Modern Cabinet Black Nickel Pull in a longer 5-inch version for those with wider drawers or taller cabinets. The longer handle is great for added surface area. What you gain in length, you do give up in width with this pull, however. Choosing between the 3-inch and 5-inch should come down to the size of your cabinets and what works best for your parent.
The arched bow pull from Cosmas is another excellent option. It provides a good amount of clearance above the cabinet thanks to its arched shape. And, its curved shape also makes it easy for older hands to grip.
For even more cabinet pulls to give your parent’s home a boost of style, check out this list of ADA-Compliant Black Cabinet Pulls perfect for the aging-in-place home.
A Simple Black Cabinet Pull is the Perfect Finishing Touch to an Aging-in-Place Kitchen or Bath Upgrade
As you work your way through your aging-in-place home remodel, don’t forget that while the priority is to create a safe house for your parent to live in for years to come, it also needs to feel like a home.
Simple updates to your kitchen and bath hardware will go a long way towards making an old home feel like new, especially modern black cabinet pulls that look stylish in just about any modern kitchen. Add any of the black cabinet pulls from my list of favorites as the finishing touch to your kitchen or bath aging-in-place remodel and your parent will fall in love with their home all over again.
If you need help finding the right cabinetry pulls and handles for your remodel, use the comments section below. I’m here to help.
Good luck with your next aging-in-place home project!
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