The beauty of copper lies in its ability to present itself in many forms, colours and finishes. Therefore, it can be used to add warmth and interest to any kitchen style, from modern to traditional and everything in between.
The smooth reflective qualities of a perfectly polished copper finish look stunning in a sleek and streamlined contemporary kitchen. Use a polished copper backsplash to bounce light around your room and add warmth to an all white, simplistic space.
Copper, like any metal, can also be worked into an industrial-style kitchen while adding more warmth than cooler metals such as stainless steel. Team a polished copper with textured exposed bricks, or an oxidised copper with concrete countertops and black cabinetry.
These hammered copper pendant lights work beautifully with the natural look of the rattan bar stools, the organic form of the bevelled-edge subway tiles, and the traditional feel of the Shaker-style cabinet doors.
Opt for a smooth polish as opposed to hammered or oxidised, as it is more in keeping with the clean look of Nordic spaces.
Some will say that copper is on the way out; however, I believe that any material, when used in a way that takes full advantage of its natural beauty and characteristics, always has its place in design.
Steer clear of mass-produced imitation copper accessories, and instead opt for statement pieces manufactured with love from the real deal; this will guarantee longevity both physically and aesthetically.
With dark tones set to dominate kitchen design in 2017, you might think it’s time to let go of your copper fascination. However, copper can continue to find a place in the kitchen alongside darker, more sultry tones.
While mass-produced copper accessories may be disappearing from the shelves of our favourite homeware stores, designers are continuing to embrace copper; but they are focusing more on the natural beauty of this warm and malleable material.
At no time is a material more beautiful than in its pure, raw and organic form. In place of the recently trendy polished copper finish, we will see a shift towards a more natural and industrial aesthetic in the use of metals such as copper in the home.
British designer Tom Dixon launched a new range of homewares at Milan Design week in 2016 called Materiality. It tells the story of the materials that he uses in his products, including copper, and focuses on their natural characteristics and beauty.
Copper adds a beautiful, welcoming warmth to even the coldest kitchen. Real copper pieces will age with use and time, and will develop a deeper, solid colour on the surface as the metal reacts with oxygen and moisture in the air.
This reaction is called oxidisation and is responsible for unfinished copper changing to beautiful colours like green, purple and bronze, protecting the copper from corrosion and decay. This applies more to copper used outdoors, but you can see an example in this backsplashes.
Copper doesn’t just have a beautiful face. It is a surprisingly practical choice for many surfaces and accessories in a kitchen. Copper has natural antimicrobial properties – it is said to resist bacteria better than stainless steel, which makes it a practical choice for a kitchen sink or countertop. It is also easy to clean and develops a beautiful patina over time.
Kitchen tops, sinks, taps and backsplashes are some areas in your kitchen that you might consider incorporating this warm metal into. Let’s take a look at these features in detail.
Copper sinks are available in polished, burnished and hammered finishes depending on the style of your kitchen. Many modern, polished copper-look kitchen sinks are in fact made from stainless steel coloured to look like copper. The advantage of this is that the colour won’t change over time like real copper, perfect for those that want to hold onto the perfectly polished look.
A wax coating can be applied to copper countertops periodically to maintain their patina and create a barrier against water and other liquids. If you are particular about maintaining a pristine kitchen and prefer more low-maintenance materials, copper countertops are probably not the best option for you.
Copper is used to make water pipes because it does not corrode and is easy to bend into shape.
If you are not keen on the fact that the colour of your copper backsplash will change over time, but you have your heart set on incorporating its warm tones into your new kitchen, try a glass backsplash in a copper colour for a much more low-maintenance option.
Have you incorporated copper into your kitchen? Tell us how, or upload photos in the Comments below.