In a May 30, 2014 article for the Star Tribune, designer and home improvement expert Vicki Payne declares that brass is back in home furnishings. Payne discusses the trend of “vintage brass,” where the metal’s conventionally shiny polish is toned down by a softer finish. Aside from creating a warm appearance, the finish also reduces maintenance requirements.
“The new brass is coated with a tarnish-resistant finish that cleans up with just a soft damp cloth. No polishing, ever.
As designers replace their silver jewelry with gold, the trend has spilled over into home decor. The trend also manifests with young designers in New York City and other metro areas buying all the antique brass beds they can find for their clients’ contemporary spaces.
Vintage brass is easier for some homeowners to embrace than the shiny silver finishes normally associated with contemporary design. But make no mistake about it: While the finish may be vintage, the styles are modern and trendy.
Vintage brass is best paired with warmer, darker painted walls. Navy, brown and black provide the perfect backdrop. This is not a trend you can partially embrace. The overall look, while contemporary, is pure luxury at its finest.”
Aside from opulent four-poster beds, chairs, and coffee tables, there are other architectural or design elements that can be accented by the metal. Brass tube forgings can be used on balcony or stairway rails, cabinet or door handles, and other solid hardware. Sheets of the metal in different colors are welded into unique wall claddings, countertops, and backsplashes. Brass plumbing fixtures and fittings, such as faucets and bathtubs, give the kitchen and bath a sophisticated look.
Artists also craft interesting home decors from brass. Grand sculptures, ornamental clocks, and other art pieces made of the metal become valuable statements and accessories. The metal can be polished for a distinct impression, molded in its natural patina, or altered with finishes.
The sought-after properties of brass go beyond aesthetics. Its malleability is a joy to work with, which makes welding and crafting easier than using alternatives. Despite this ease of handling, the copper alloy’s durability and corrosion-resistance does not waver. The various sizes, shapes, and thickness aside from a standard brass square tube can withstand time with minimal upkeep.
Makers of home improvement products can consult wholesale suppliers like Rotax Metals for quality raw materials. With top-of-the-line brass forgings, products can be manufactured with elegant beauty and lasting function.
(Source: Brass is back with a softer, warmer finish, Star Tribune, May 30, 2014)