New Aged Metallics

By Oliver Burns

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February 9, 2015|Luxury Design

  • M

  • etallics have been shining in the limelight in interiors for many seasons now, from warm coppers and brass to cooler chromes. High-gloss surfaces have prevailed in this area however looking ahead to this year, it seems the tarnished patterns and patinas of aged metal will be leading the way. This year’s most interesting metallics are both shimmering but also rich and earthy. Tarnished, faded or oxidised, the varying shades bought about by these processes offers subtleties that give pieces even greater style and elegance. Metals like copper can achieve beautiful shades of blue and green on oxidisation and the distinctive patinas means their beauty will only improve with age.
Image sourced via Zoffany

The subtlety of this new shade of metal means it can be applied to bigger surfaces without looking garish and the look of aged or corroded metals are being recreated for wallpapers and tiles. Printed on metallic foil with layers of translucent inks which distress and crackle glaze the surface, the Lustre Tile wallpaper from Zoffany offers a warm, oxidised copper patina with accents of teal. Ralph Laurenalso offer something similar with their Empress Foil range of wallpaper.

Image sourced via Decorpad

For something extra special, gilding a wall in gold or silver leaf and applying a gentle antique glaze over the top will produce a metallic sheen that you won’t achieve elsewhere.

Image sourced via Fondovalle

Designers such as Fondovalle have also found a way to achieve this metallic sheen on a ceramic surface. Their new Metalgloss collection looks like sheets of oxidised metal and the copper finish translates beautifully onto flooring. Architectural Ceramics also offer the look of oxidised metal in porcelain tiles.

Images sourced via (left) and Tom Dixon (right)

Covering an entire surface such as a floor or wall is great for achieving a rough-luxe industrial look. However for other interior styles looking to add a touch of this trend, aged metallics can be introduced through lighting and decorative accessories. The Axial Pendant by designer Bec Brittain for SCPfeatures a steel shade with an iridescent finish offering a unique blend of colours. For a more industrial style light, Tom Dixon’s Lustre range give off the same iridescent sheen from a ‘secret’ glaze making each light totally unique meaning the colour can be anything from a pale lime to a deep bottle green.

Image via West Elm

As can be seen with the lighting above, faceted edges complement the lustrous nature of tarnished metal and the West Elm Faceted Ceramic Side Table is just another example of the beauty that can be achieved from these metallics.

Image sourced via West Elm

For something less aged, try brushed metals which offer a subtle understated shine. The West Elm Martini Side Table comes in an antique brushed brass yet remains sleek and sculptural for more contemporary interiors.

The colourful textured patina of aged metal is key. Whether on surfaces, furniture or accessories, burnished, tarnished or oxidised metallics can help to reflect and bounce light around your room, even in the earthy tones of this season.


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