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The Growing Trend in Copper and Brass Fixtures

by Lauren Busser Direct from the Designers™’ Editorial Director

Where silver once dominated, gold tones are edging their way in, but it’s not necessarily gold that is being introduced into interior design: it’s bronze and brass. Many manufacturers are currently reporting a rising trend in yellow metals. The yellow metals, previously considered to be old fashioned are now gaining steam, particularly those golden tones that offer a warmer aesthetic. The result is a beautiful classic look that offers a pleasing patina without being ostentatious.

This contemporary LAMPS PLUS® dining room is comprised mostly of neutrals but it is warmed by the use of dark metals in the Olympia Bronze 27” Wide 5-Light Chandelier and Wall Sconce. With its old bronze finish these light fixtures are perfectly on-trend.

LAMPS PLUS Dining Room

Brass and copper used to be mostly relegated to the background in home design. Copper was generally hidden behind walls in plumbing fixtures and piping. Now, they have come into the foreground in everything from faucets to sinks to light fixtures. But rather than being limited to the kitchen and bathroom it is making its presence known throughout the home and in both the interior and exterior. For example door knockers, handles and handrails were often traditionally made from brass.

Brass and warm metal fixtures gave way to stainless steel in the 80's, when technology began to heavily influence design trends. It was then that computers and other appliances began to morph from a putty or beige to sleek aluminum or steel finishes. From there design trends followed suit with stainless steel quickly becoming the favorite for appliances and silvery tones influencing fixtures. Today these bright finishes have become so ubiquitous that the futuristic tones and sleek lines have started to seem dated themselves.

Add a bronze finished faucet such as the Cassidy Single-Handle Bar/Prep Faucet from Delta®. Available in both Venetian® and Champagne Bronze™ you are sure to find a shade that goes with your kitchen’s décor.

Delta Cassidy Single-Handle Bar/Prep Faucet

Instead of a silver metal designers are now favoring the warmth and hand wrought workmanship evoked by brass and darker metals. Brass and copper can bring to mind Moroccan elegance, Italian mid-century fantasy, and English clubbiness or French elegance.

Today, brass is being used in a new movement called organic modernism. This new take on the modern aesthetic makes prominent use of natural materials such as leather and stone and focuses on texture, unlike the traditional modern aesthetic that favors clean lines.

Forged from high-quality recycled copper, the Native Trails 72” Aurora Copper Tub is a beautiful focal point for your bathroom. Created with thousands of hammer strikes this is a piece of art that you will be happy to show off.

Native Trails 72" Aurora Copper Tub

However, working with brass presents some challenges. Brass doesn’t rust but its finish is harder to maintain than stainless steel or chrome. To make maintaining brass easier manufacturers heavily lacquered the metal. This made it easy to clean but very shiny. The current trend is to use raw brass and copper which gain a lovely patina with age.

This LAMPS PLUS® living room is warm and inviting and features a Franklin Iron Works™ Tremont Floor Lamp with Burlap Shade. The fixture features a deep bronze finish and offers a clean and chic look.

LAMPS PLUS Living Room

The primary reason that copper has become popular is because the metal is used to accentuate style rather than simply create a bold statement on its own. Brass and copper has a way of making everything feel richer. It can be used in furniture, light fixtures, and other spaces. The reflective textures makes a room feel bigger and warmer than stainless steel.

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