Metal in the Kitchen
Are you looking to spruce up your kitchen? If so, consider that using metal in the kitchen can add a stunning elegance, sleek modern sophistication, or even rustic warmth. It’s long-lasting, easy to clean, sanitary, and versatile enough to fit any style.
Because they are durable, resistant to liquids, and sanitary, metals have been used in commercial kitchen design for years. But recently metals have expanded from their commercial use and are rapidly making their way into household kitchens. No longer just limited to appliances, metal has become a popular choice for interior kitchen design.
Ranging from subtle accent pieces, to cabinetry, backsplashes, and countertops, metal can transform the busiest room in your house to a place of contemporary elegance.
Durable and strong, Stainless Steel is the most commonly used metal in kitchens. Beyond its strength, it also won’t patina. Therefore, it requires minimal maintenance. Furthermore, if you keep it shiny, it can create an illusion of a larger and more open space. It’s the same principle as painting your walls white to make it feel bigger.
The Stainless Steel we carry comes in three finishes, #2B, #4, and #8.
- 2B: Also called “Mill Finish,” this is a flat grey color. This is the least popular choice for metal in the kitchen.
- #4: Also called “Brushed Finish,” this is the most popular finish for kitchen projects. Typically, it is used to create a sleek and modern appearance or a more industrial one.
- #8: Known as “Mirror Finish,” this is commonly used for very specific and smaller pieces or projects. As the name implies, #8 is highly reflective and without proper care can be fairly easily scratched.
Despite the popularity of stainless steel, Copper is quickly becoming a top contender in kitchen design. Copper is naturally resistant to bacteria and gives your kitchen a warm ambiance. Providing rustic charm, it still gives off a modern style.
It is also visually versatile, as copper can be polished to keep its rosy gold color or allowed to oxidize. If it oxidizes, it develops a patina of a burnt brown highlighted with turquoise hues. In this way you can use the same metal for a folksy and rustic appearance, or something slick and modern. Furthermore, there are many techniques for finishing copper, adding to its versatility. Copper Sheet ASTM B370, also known as “Roofing Copper,” is the most popular type for kitchen projects.
Some customers of ours made a full Copper countertop for their kitchen! Check out our blog post with pictures and advice!
A blend of copper mixed with zinc, Brass is a less common material for metals in the kitchen. However, Brass is still becoming more popular over the last couple of decades for kitchen work. Many Brass alloys are durable, visually attractive, corrosion resistance, and available in a wide range of colors.
Because of the bright color of most non-leaded Brasses, they are used in luxurious accents or statement pieces.
The other main copper alloy, Bronze is mostly copper with tin alloyed in. It is a metal more famous for medals, mirrors, and old armor than kitchens. However, like its cousin brass, various Bronzes are becoming more common in select kitchens.
Bronzes tend to be visually darker than brass, but are also stronger than copper. They can also be polished to an exceptional shine. As a result, they are often used in ways similar to brass. Bronze accents or contrast pieces can really catch the eye and make a dramatic design statement.
Zinc has less sparkle but is highly corrosion resistant. It is widely used in outdoor applications – so if you are looking to improve or build an outdoor kitchen this may be the material for you. It may surprise you to learn that zinc has actually been used in countertops for centuries. If you’ve eaten in an oyster bar, for example, you’ve seen a zinc countertop. Skip the polish and zinc’s silver shine will develop a blue-gray patina. A soft metal, the edges can be decoratively shaped, echoing dentil or crown molding or your own design. Interest in zinc is leading more metal fabricators to put it in their repertoire.
More and more kitchen designers have been installing metal countertops for hygienic – as well as attractive – food preparation. We at Online Metals thought they make such a great addition to a kitchen, it deserved its own section.
Made by forming and fastening thin sheets of metal onto plywood or a similar backing material, these countertops are custom-tailored to effortlessly fit your kitchen once it has been laid down. Metal’s malleable quality also allows you to incorporate unique designs and distinctive patterns in your countertop. A metal countertop can even be welded and polished to your existing sink to create a seamlessly integrated unit.
Feeling inspired? We found a great DIY guide to help make a gleaming countertop a great addition to your home. Just follow these simple steps on How to Install a Stainless Steel Kitchen Countertop.