Clerkenwell Design Week – Metal Inspiration

After taking a breath of reflection over the bank holiday weekend we look back at yet another fantastic year at Clerkenwell Design Week (CDW). When the sun decides to shine, there’s no better exhibition that takes you around the local showrooms and pop up exhibitions, it’s like a walking tour of the area with design at every step! What’s not to love! This year we saw a very prominent presence of wonderful and interesting finishes from metals to woods, fabrics and reclaimed materials which take a beautiful design to an extraordinary space.

Whilst chrome and stainless steel are still high on the list for many, we are seeing many more variations and types of finishes available across the market. Having the flexibility in choosing different and interesting finishes helps to marry brassware, sanitaryware, ironmongery, light fittings, furniture and flooring to create a complete and beautifully considered design. The trick here is balance, the devil, after all, is in the detail. Some stand out finishes on our radar are:

Antique Brass

Antique brass has made a huge comeback in traditional fittings especially with the age of English Heritage being as prominent as it is currently is. Beardmores knob shows exactly how this finish creates a feeling of history and adds to the story of the room.

Matt Black

Blend it in by matching it with a beautiful slate stone or make it stand out in direct contrast to a white tile. Matt black looks amazing across all different platforms. Samuel Heaths Landmark range in matt black sanitary range really stood out for us at CDW!

Light Gold

Whilst yellow gold has been discretely crossed off everyone’s design list, its close and subtle cousin has taken a step forward. Sheer elegance across both traditional and contemporary pieces it adds a touch of sophistication to a space and works as equally well with simple Scandinavian as it does with intricate eclectic styles such as this sensational wall light from Bert Frank.


Standing out from the crowd again this year bronze is still appearing on everyone’s wish list. Its intense depth and layering adds mystery and nostalgia all at once and can be teamed up so easily with any other finish. We love when a contemporary fitting sits against a natural marble stone.


Copper it seems this finish has slowed down in popularity however it is not going to disappear fast. When introduced subtly with the correct accompaniments it can make a space pop with warmth as its soft glowing colour adds a touch of feminine charm. Hansgrohes showroom display this year reinvigorated our love of this finish!


Colour is back! And we love it! In the fashion industry they call it colour blocking or the opposite colour clashing in our world we call it a breath of fun filled fresh air! You can turn any piece of metal ware into a fabulous statement of colour. Red, pink, purple, blue, yellow… the colour wheel is open for business. We adore the simple lines of Hayche WW Colour collection metal backrest available in a variety of colour combinations.

When dealing with metal finishes, you can colour block by using one finish throughout on all the different elements, or combine two for an interesting eclectic feel. So, whatever your preference whether it is Matt black or Antique brass, remember, balance is everything. Adding touches here and there will add a sense of luxury but over doing it may come across as over indulgent.