Jenni Ingram
Jenni Ingram
  • Hometalker
  • Wexford, PA

How to Install Overlay or "Hidden" Cabinet Hinges

4 Materials
2 Hours

When we started the kitchen remodel, my husband really wanted to do all new cabinets. I talked him out of it because the ones we have are functional, solid wood and really just needed refreshing (not to mention cabinets are very expensive!). So he conceded but said he really hated the hinges. The hinges?! So here was my solution to those eyesore hinges.
how to install overlay hinges
Look at them! They catch your attention. In our kitchen update, which you can follow on my blog, we added a few new cabinets that had concealed hinges already installed.  So to tie it all together and give it a cohesive and more modern look we bought concealed hinges, also called overlay hinges, also called European hinges. 
how to install overlay hinges
First measure the overlay. Simply measure the width of your cabinet door, and subtract the width of the opening. Divide by 2.  My opening was 21”w my cabinets were 21.5”w so my overlay was ¼”. Some of the hinges are adjustable – spend the extra money and get the adjustable ones – you’ll need that feature, trust me! Check out my full blog post for where I bought mine.
how to install overlay hinges
Take down the cabinets and remove all existing hardware. Paint or stain your cabinets. 
how to install overlay hinges
Next, you’ll need a precision mounter that comes with a large drill bit. Align the jig to the edge of the door, mark the center ...
how to install overlay hinges
.... and drill your hole to the depth of the bit.  This is the exact size for the hinge to fit in. 
how to install overlay hinges
Now attach your new hinge with a few screws, and screw the hinge back to the frame.  The other screws on the hinge allow you to adjust the cabinet door side to side and up a down a bit – use your adjustments to get your doors level. 
how to install overlay hinges
And wa-lah, new kitchen cabinet hinges. - tucked inside ...
how to install overlay hinges
... and NOT drawing your attention. For more DIY tricks, tutorials and design ideas, please subscribe to my blog here. To see more photos of this process and get the name of my tools, click the blog link below! Thank you!

Suggested materials:

  • Hinges
Jenni Ingram

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

3 of 9 questions
  • Milagros Pacheco
    on May 18, 2018

    Anyone can answer me if i could paint my cabinets? Mine are the cheapest cabinets that comes, and i think they're not real wood, can someone could answer me please

    • Jewls Hoenig
      on Nov 14, 2018

      I recently redid using Rustoleum Furniture Transformations. It comes in LOTS of colors and is super easy. I ended up with a GREAT look. Many compliments.

  • Sylvia Rodriguez
    on Oct 6, 2018

    And my cabinets are pressed wood and I would like to know can pressed wood be painted because my cabinets look terrible I do not want to ask the landlord to help me

  • I have the antique, hammered copper, pointy arrow looking hinges and pulls! And I HATE them!  I wonder if I could cut off the points and paint them??? They would have to be sanded smooth at the cuts.....

    • Lindy
      7 days ago

      Pulleeeze someone answer this. I have the same ones and I'd LOVE to find a way to make them attractive!!

Join the conversation

3 of 59 comments
  • Ris33262251
    on Oct 5, 2018

    When I wanted to do this, I ran into a major problem. My current hinges were no longer available and there were no others that fit the cut-out on the cabinet door. My painter finally found them through a cabinet shop. Then I found out they would cost almost $8.00 each. I needed 174 as I was doing the whole house. So I soaked them in a solution of half and half Simple Green and water. That got all the grease off. Then I spray painted them with metallic paint in the color I wanted, a sort of rubbed pewter. The only place the paint wears is very small. Will touch up occasionally. Saved $900.00.

    • Patricia
      on Dec 18, 2018

      We painted ours, too, when we redid the kitchen cabinets. Same color as the cabinets so they aren't so obvious.

  • Tori Webb Woods
    on Oct 6, 2018

    I actually like the look of my hinges and hardware. It is from the seventies and has a cool looking darker patina over time. Looks great on my updated , painted cabinets. Plus my mom picked them out so they are special to me.

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