When we hire a Interior Designer to decor our house we ask for perfect design. In the process we focus our attention towards the obvious larger elements (kitchen design, wardrobe design, wallpapers, ceiling design, furniture, etc). But we underestimate the role of hinges, which play equally a important role.
This is why hinges are considered heart of doors. For better use of space, functionalities and longer life of furniture correct type of hinge should be used. There are variety of hinges available in market designed to give different range of motion like soft close, overlay, sliding motion, etc.Thus the Interior Designer must be well acquainted with type of hinges and its functionality.
If the hinges are not choose properly, the entire design could be off. In order to choose correct hinges, first we need to know the type of cabinet frame we are working on.
Features of Hinges:-
Before finding out the types of hinges for cabinets we shall first know the purpose and features of hinges. The feature of a hinge explains it's usability.
As the word decorative suggests these hings are mainly for decor purpose. There are conditions in which they serve both the purpose functional and decorative. In this case the decorative part or element of the hinges stays out of the cabinet for decor. But there are hinges which are only for the purpose of decoration. The latter type of hinge is sometimes referred to as a faux hinge. Some people use these when they want a specific look but would also like their cabinet doors to be self-closing or soft-closing and can’t find a decorative hinge that does meets both their functional and aesthetic preferences.
Demountable hinge gets very handy in use. When a kitchen cabinet or door is attached to something using these hinges the cabinets can be easily demounted when needed.
c. Heavy-duty hinges
These are usually used in industrial environment rather than residential. They meant to withstand more weight. However, you can use these for some cabinets in your home, especially if your cabinets doors are hefty because of their material or because they’re over sized. Pivot and barrel hinges are common types of heavy-duty hinges that can hold a lot of weight but allow a door to open and close easily.
d. Concealed hinges
Concealed Hinges are hinges that are hidden from view when the cabinet door is closed, use in kitchen and office cupboards and cabinets. They are called European Hinges.Concealed hinges offer easier door adjustment to compensate for slight imperfections in cabinet construction. It allows doors to be mounted and demounted using a tool-free clip-on mechanism.
e. Self Closing Hinges
These hinges has the ability to close the door by itself if you leave the door open. These hinges acquire this ability because of it design. They are designed to achieve this function due to the recoiling action of spring installed in the hinge or due to hydraulic action. These hinges are mostly used in office door, hospital, etc. Hydraulic hinges are also used in overlay cabinets in kitchen.
f. Soft Closing Hinges
They basically similar to self closing hinges. The difference lies in the closing action. Self closing hinges does not offer a controlled and slow closing for door, while soft close offer a controlled closing motion for the door. Thus keeping the structural integrity of the door safe.
Types of Hinges:-
As we are now well aware of features of hinges. Now it time to learn about the types of hinges. Hinges are widely made up of steel, galvanized steel, stainless steel, brass, aluminum, nickel, chrome,etc. While selecting hinges for your cabinet type you must also consider the hinge's finish. So that you may not want to choose a gold finish when you have all silver hardware in the rest of your kitchen.
The most commonly used hinges ever. They consists of two rectangular metal plates with screw holes joined by either a pin or rod.
2. Butterfly hinges
Perhaps similar to butt hinges in function wise. But instead of rectangular metal plates their shape are much more decorative. Most commonly used in staircases, briefcase, etc.
3. Concealed Hinges
They generally invisible hinges, also known as European Hinges. These hinges are made so you only see the surface of the door. They consist of two parts, which are pivots and brackets. Concealed hinges commonly used on furniture doors as they are aesthetically pleasing.
4. Continuous hinges
These hinges are also known as piano hinges because of their length as it runs the entire length of the door, panel and box. Piano hinges are manufactured with or without holes. These hinges also come in various thicknesses, pin diameters, and knuckle lengths.
5. Flag Hinges
Flag Hinges has the feature of demountable hinge. A Flag Hinge can be taken apart with a fixed pin on one leaf. Flag hinges can also swivel a full 360 degrees around the pin. Flag hinges are manufactured as a right hand and a left hand configuration. They are mainly used in joints where door is needed to be frequently removed.
6. Face Frame Hinges
Face frame hinges are used in face frame cabinets. These cabinets has a slight frame going around the opening of the cabinet. Face frame hinge which will attach on one side to the door and the other side on the face frame. This hinge is a type of hidden hinge which is not visible from the outside of cabinet.
7. Flush Hinges
They are somewhat similar to butt hinges but these are attached to the inside of the kitchen cabinets. The specialty of this hinge is that when door is closed the small part of the hinge closes into the large part, making it look like one full piece.
8. Overlay Hinges
Now a days these hinges are most commonly used. Overlay refers to the way in which door gets closed up with the cabinet frame. The door is installed in front of the face of the cabinet so that they are attached to the inside of the cabinet frame and the face of the door sits on the frame.
There two kinds of overlay hinges- partial overlay hinges and the full overlay hinges. Partial overlay leave a small gap between the doors, which lets you see some of the face frame behind them. A full overlay hinge is what you’ll need for cabinet doors that cover the full face of the cabinet.
9. Inset Hinges
Kind of a decorative hinge. it has two part narrow side and wider side. Wider side is attached to inner part of cabinet while narrow part is attached outside for decor purpose.
10. Pivot hinges
A pivot hinges are typically found on lower cabinets or home theater system cabinets. These hinges are best for inset doors on which you don’t want hinges visible. The frame will have inset pieces, while the door will have a piece that comes out and fits securely in the inset pieces, allowing it to pivot within the inset piece.
11. Offset Hinges
Offset name clearly implies that the two side of hinge will not align. Thus extending the door much outer from the frame on opening. This is especially helpful when you have thick cabinet doors that need to extend out from the frame so that they don’t bump the frame when you open them.
One of the key factor that determines the luxury standards of a house is wood work. And to decor our house with modern furniture we have to spent around 40% of our budget. We ask Interior Designer to use best ply wood, laminate, etc. But we underestimate the role of hinges used in these wood work. For sustaining long life and durability of door and cabinets and wardrobes, etc, hinges play a important role.