What’s Behind the Boom in Brass Home Décor?

Brass homewares

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“In 2024, we expect to see brass accents continue to trend in popularity,” Paul Kropp, co-founder of cabinetry company Bakes and Kropp told US publication Good Housekeeping this month.

“Versatile by nature, brass exudes a classic and timeless appeal that creates a sense of sophistication in both traditional and modern design environments.”

Brass home decor, which has great resistance to seawater corrosion and is easy to machine and form, is certainly not new — it’s just having a resurgence. It’s not only appearing more and more in the last few years in the form of cabinetry in the home, but is also being used for side tables, mirrors and even salt and pepper shakers.

“Although brass was once considered dated and passé, it’s now making its way into all aspects of design as warmer metallic tones take precedence over cool steel, silver and chrome,” Michelle Boudreau of Michelle Boudreau Design told The Zoe Report, another US publication.

Tom Hodgeman, marketing director of Australian home brand Ivory and Deene, says he’s seen a big increase in brass home styling in the last two years, especially in the world of lighting and furniture. He attributes it to creators developing different finishes, from polished to brushed.

“This has allowed people to add brass to their home without needing to complete a whole room makeover,” Hodgeman says. “There has also been a rise of second-hand treasures making it back to light, so what once was dated is now returning with a vintage spin.”

On top of adding timelessness to a room, brass can also create visual interest and contrast by allowing other key design elements and materials, like marble or wood, to shine, says Kropp. Brass elements can also enhance a room’s lighting, casting a soft, ambient glow that’s both cosy and inviting, says Hodgeman.

“Also, brass’s versatility allows it to seamlessly integrate with a range of design styles, from classic and traditional, to contemporary and minimalist, adding depth and character to any decor,” he says.

Warm, natural materials like wood or leather beautifully complement brass homewares, giving a space a feel of earthy elegance. Because brass homewares on their own don’t necessarily make a space warm and inviting, Hodgeman advises you layer different textures and tones alongside them. This will highlight all that brass has to offer, he says.

“Two-toned metals are trending at the moment, as we see the pursuit of individual style become a trend in itself,” he says. “For this reason, nickel and brass are a classic combo – with brass typically chosen for feature pieces and nick for the pieces less likely to be highlighted. It’s an easy match with these two tones.”

One pitfall to avoid when styling brass homewares and furniture is to over-fill your home with them. Instead, choose a few hero pieces, like a hammered coffee table, brass mirror, chandelier or pendant light. Then, select the smaller pieces, like a candlestick set or photo frame, to create a cohesive space.

“A way to style a single brass piece, like a coffee table, is to layer different tones and textures on top,” says Hodgeman.

“An example of this may be an olive-green leather book, a white candle and a string of wooden beads. The tones compliment the brass, and the textures bring out the warmth of the piece.”

Keen to get in on the brass home decor trend? Here are some of our favourite pieces tapping into it.

RJ Living Citta Pebble Tray, $109 

RJ Living tray

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