"Fashion fades, only style remains the same," said Coco Chanel, one of the most influential designers of the 120th century.
The Power of Creativity
It's true - trends fade, patterns end, and preferences shift. While our world is ever-evolving, the arena of fashion and interior design is definitely not excluded, we are continually channeling our creative powers. As humans we possess the super-power of limitless imagination and inspiration. We are able to use the trends and theme of the past to create something brand new and exciting.
This is what we've done for centuries with music, painting styles, building and decorating homes, and clothing fashion. An important role that home designers, in particular, have is to collect from all resources around them and melt them into something beautiful and perhaps, never seen before!
One trend that has found its place in the midst of some debate is Modern Metallics. The question that comes is one that asks how we can utilize such an antiquated fashion while still keeping things fresh.
The History of Metals
When thinking about metallics - brass, copper, iron, and steel - it brings about a particular nostalgia. Observing and experiencing a metallic orange is reminiscent of the American Industrial Revolution of the 18th and 19th centuries. It brings up thoughts about railroads and trains, smokestacks and textile factories, or Henry Ford's mechanical vehicles.
Steel was an imperative element during the industrial revolution, as well as other metals. The production of these metals allowed for the rapid industrial growth and construction of cities, forming the United States into how we know it today. This is the reason why metallics are associated with 18th and 19th century America, and they are often debated as antiquated when it comes to interior design.
Using Modern Metallics
Okay, so, how do you use modern metallics? Well, it's a beautiful theme - if done right!
Here are a couple of ideas:
Steel: There are so many different types of steel, but the preferred type is stainless. It has a mild shine, but it looks clean and modern. Perfect for kitchen backsplashes, appliances, and sometimes outdoor lighting. It is also a highly utilized material for counter tops.
Iron: A popular type of iron used in design is wrought iron. It is unique because it's a material that is meticulously worked on by a smither while hot. Cast iron, on the other hand, is melted and poured into a mold. If you're having your interiors custom designed, it's excellent for hardware such as stairwell banisters and awnings. This is because it can be shaped into your own unique design so a theme is created throughout your home. It's important not to overdue use of wrought iron, but rather use it in a uniform fashion and sparingly.
Brass: This is a timelessly gorgeous material. It's an all-time favorite because it's the perfect combination between stainless steel and gold. It provides a lot more warmth and color to a home, but still maintains the same sleek and shiny nature as stainless steel. Brass is reminiscent of the steampunk era, and is a perfect material for interior hardware - columns, light fixtures (a particular favorite), sink basins and handles, wall art, and home accents. Luckily, it doesn't really seem like it can be overdone!
Copper: A beautiful material with mixtures of reds, browns, and oranges, it's important not to over-do copper. While it is metallic and industrial, it is also great for farmhouse-style homes. Copper is best used in home accents and appliances. Having a full copper pot and pan set out on display can be very beautiful, along with copper planters, and the occasional copper faucet or outlet. If you're feeling daring, you can throw in a copper bathtub or sink. It's important to use these accents very carefully and make sure that they are balanced with the other aspects of your home. Copper is undoubtedly extremely beautiful. Sometimes, using less of it makes it more noticeable and have a bigger impact than more would.
Take a Risk
It can be challenging to choose everything that goes into your home with so much care and precision. There needs to be a balance between making your space seem too antiquated versus fresh and modern with a olden touch.
The most important thing is to start with a foundation, and then slowly add in your accents. This is a great way to avoid overdoing it, and allowing the metallic features to steadily add in their beautiful antiquated touch to your already modern home. Be sure to do your research and consult a designer, or even just flip through a couple of really good magazines!