A touch of brass

PUBLISHED: 15:13 02 June 2016 | UPDATED: 15:40 27 June 2016

A touch of brass

A touch of brass

Archant

How metallics such as a zinc, copper and brass combine with naturals to can add glamour without a hefty price tag

A touch of brassA touch of brass

Bringing nature into the home and combining associated materials such as wood, stone and cork with metals such as brass, copper and zinc have been feted by experts as this year’s ongoing trend.

As well as adding a different mood to the more neutral shades of the wood, stones and corks, the metallics look different under varied lighting and add a touch of glamour which doesn’t have to break the bank.

One such believer in this look is the team behind St Albans-based Quirky Interiors, who often work regularly with homeowners and property developers in the surrounding area, making their own made-to-measure furniture mixed with antique and vintage pieces.

Owner James Petre said: “Our zinc is aged so has a lovely patina that will change over time. Some people like theirs to look old and heavily patinated, others prefer a more even finish so we do both.

A touch of brassA touch of brass

“For table tops metals are perfect - easy to clean and are also hygienic for food surfaces. Wrapping kitchen doors in zinc or brass and then aging them to suit is another transforming effect. It gives a unique and expensive looking kitchen without the hefty price tag. Also brass has a warmer aesthetic with earthy tones which suit most homes and is also associated with quality.”

Designer Emma Blomfield also backs the ‘time to shine’ trend reflected in using the aforementioned metals, not just for surfacing but for accessories and side pieces like smaller bedside tables, fabrics or additions in the bathroom.

She suggests acid wash metallic cow hide rugs to brass cylindrical vases for flowers and greenery through to brushed brass side tables.

Again, you don’t have to spend much to get on in this trend as metallics can be considered the jewellery for the home with things like drawer handles and copper catchalls through to candle jars.

A touch of brassA touch of brass

Of course this bit of ‘bling’ can be softened, as this feature suggests, by bringing the outside in and adding natural neutral tones to offset the shine.

Humble materials like cork, stone and different woods are being heralded for their simplicity and eco-friendliness.

Designer Anna van Dongen explained: “A major trend this year will be combining natural materials with metals and simplicity of form will be key in the way each material will be mixed together.”

When it comes to interior design, balance is everything, for example, the warmth of wood combined with the coldness of metals creates a balanced blend of polar forces.

A touch of brassA touch of brass

Wood is soft even in its hardness and has a cosy feel to it and has a strong connection with the origins of workmanship itself, going back centuries. And in a way so does metal, so the pairing between the two provides us with a union of ‘real’ materials: the uttermost natural one combined with the truly industrial one for an effect of balance and wholesomeness.

And another way to create this is not solely furniture, fixtures and fittings but with wallpapers and fabrics with natural facades with designs including blossoms and tendrils, patinated wood, concrete looks and stone motifs, complemented by leather, tree bark and linen textures and combined with wood furniture.

LAURA BERRILL

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