Handles

Great article on Blum’s The Kitchen Think from designer Darren Morgan championing the role of the humble handle in kitchen design. Through a series of well chosen images, Darren highlights its potential in the design process.
 
http://www.thekitchenthink.co.uk/buying-a-kitchen/functional-future
 
To see the latest designs and materials on offer, visit our handle section. From contemporary to modern, from leather to hand-crafted, antique, there are hundreds of styles to choose from, including selections from leading manufacturers such as Furnipart, Giara, Turnstyle and FingerTip.
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It was back in 1977 that Danish manufacturer Furnipart started to produce and sell knobs and handles made from wood or plastic throughout Europe.

Although the company was very successful, the founder of the company Lars Ole Hansen wanted to stimulate growth and so he took the unique step of inviting well-known designers to collaborate on the range.

It was in 1986 that the first Furnipart designer handle was produced. Called Bridge, this design is still selling very well today, over 25 years later.

Working with a set of innovative designers, many of who have won international awards, Furnipart offers a very broad range from timeless classics that will last for years, such as Bridge, through to very sophisticated niche styles that appeal to a particular, carefully targeted minority.

The Furnipart range is primarily aimed at the kitchen industry, where fashion moves very fast. One thing is for sure, a handle is much or than a functional necessity and can indeed be a genuine design statement in its own right.

The fashion in handles

During the 70s and 80s wooden and plastic handles in various colours were very popular.

Recessed handles in plastic were particularly successful – especially in brown and orange! Also bow and D-shaped handles in metal were very fashionable.

In the 90s, metal handles remained popular especially nickel styles, although allergy issues meant this finish was switched to chrome later in the decade.

D-shaped and bow handles made from the alloy zamac also became popular as this material is workable in almost all designs and shapes. Then, just at the turn of the century, a versatile new stainless steel finish emerged which would change the look of the kitchens for the next 10 years.

Alongside the stainless steel finishes, aluminium handles with pure, clean lines and an attractive finish became very popular in the first decade of the new century.

At the same time, a new phenomenon appeared – the handleless kitchen. Although this might appear to be a terrible development for a handle producer, only 10 – 15% were genuinely handleless.

The rest had some sort of grip either inside or out although it was designed to be very unobtrusive.

Today, sales of handleless kitchens (with or without handles) are approximately 20% of total sales, leaving a very healthy 80% still requiring handles.

The current range of contemporary, design-led handles from Furnipart is available in the UK exclusively through LDL.

Called ‘The Star on Your Furniture’, the range features stunning streamlined designs in a variety of materials including brushed nickel,  polished chrome, zinc, aluminium, glass, ceramic and wood. All the handles combine innovative design with ergonomic ease of use and functionality, an important consideration as Furnipart estimates that each product will be handled 100,000 times.
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Congratulations to Turnstyle Designs whose redesigned website gets a 5 Star rating from leading trade magazine Essential Kitchen & Bathroom Business, July edition.
 
The magazine’s regular webwatch feature singles out the new Turnstyle site for particular praise amongst handle websites concluding that the company is ‘First past the post.

Apparently the impetus for change was a company-wide rebrand, and the resulting finished product must surely be an an inspiration in-house as well as externally.’


 
See www.turnstyledesigns.com and http://www.ldlonline.co.uk/SubCategory/132/Turnstyle-Designs
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LDL Components Ltd is delighted to unveil the new 2010 collection of contemporary, design-led handles from Furnipart, the leading Danish manufacturer. Available exclusively through LDL, the new range is entitled ‘The Star on Your Furniture’ and features stunning streamlined designs in a variety of materials including brushed nickel,  polished chrome, zinc, aluminium, glass, ceramic and wood. All the handles combine innovative design with ergonomic ease of use and functionality, an important consideration as Furnipart estimates that each product will be handled 100,000 times.

 
LDL, the nationwide distributor of quality furniture fittings, offers an extensive stock of both contemporary and traditional handles, which is continually updated to reflect current trends and innovations in the sector. The company is also able to offer customers a very flexible service in that there is no minimum order quantity so boxes may be split without any surcharge.  In addition, LDL is pleased to use its superior knowledge of the market to source specific handles for both large and small furniture manufacturers alike.
 
 
Speed of delivery is another feature of LDL’s service with next day nationwide delivery standard for all orders received by 4pm. The company is also able to offer a ‘just in time’ delivery service for volume manufacturers, improving supply chain management.
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