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What are Metal Finishes and How to Choose Them

What are Metal Finishes and How to Choose Them

The knobs and other metal finishes you choose for your home will impact its overall look and style. 

Some of the small but important details of your home design are the metal and finish options you choose. Here’s how to choose the door knobs and other finishes that will best suit farmhouse style.

metal finishes farmhouse style
You can incorporate metal into unexpected places in your home, such as a vintage sign for a flea market look. Photo by Chad Mellon.

Where to Find Metal

Take a look around your house for the metal elements that contribute to your farmhouse style. These may include hardware, lighting, fixtures and fittings. But what do we mean when we talk about hardware, fixtures and fittings? “Hardware includes anything that attaches to a door,” says Kathryn Towns, Vice President of Marketing at Delaney Hardware. “Hinges, door stops, the opening and closing of the door (including barn doors), and door knobs and pulls for drawers and cabinets.” Fixtures are items that are physically attached to the house, such as faucets, shower heads, towel racks and sink drains. Fittings aren’t attached to the house except by a nail or screws, such as art frames and furniture.

metal finishes in kitchen
The finishes in your home should complement the overall type of farmhouse style you want. Homeowner Heather Tartaglia’s kitchen faucet has a dark sheen that’s both classic and adds rustic charm. Photo by Chad Mellon.

Mix or Match?

Should all the metals in your home have the same finish or different ones? Ultimately, that’s a design decision to make to best fit your own farmhouse style. You could have all the metals in your home match for a cohesive feel, or add depth with multiple metals. For example, match all the fixtures in your bathrooms but have a different finish for your kitchen, or even mix finishes within the same room. “I’ve worked with a lot of different interior designers,” Kathryn says. “There’s a great trend right now of mixing metals, like mixing brass with black.”

Logistics to Remember

Whenever you pick metal elements for your home, don’t forget to ask those basic functional questions. If you’re picking faucets for your bathroom or kitchen sink, look to see how many holes your countertop has. For door hardware, know which type of hardware you need for different types of doors. “There are different functions,” Kathryn says. “Entry doors (with a key); passage doors (everyday use, for going in and out); and privacy doors (with some way to lock it, like a bedroom or bathroom).” If you have dogs, also be aware that lever hardware won’t be a good idea. “Your dog will be able to exit really easily,” Kathryn says.

dark antique finish
Our 2021 Brand Ambassador, Courtney Vettel of The Vettel Farm, has chosen a dark antiqued finish for her hardware. “In the restoration of our historic home, we wanted to choose hardware that had a rustic feel while also sustaining strong durability,” she says. “Delaney Hardware has such an amazing collection of doorknobs, and this Tuscany Bronze finish was the perfect complement to the historic doors in our home.” Photo by Courtney Vettel.

Farmhouse Style Finishes

 These finishes will be a great choice for your farmhouse style.

door knob finishes

1. Matte Black. “This is the hottest finish that we’re seeing right now,” says Kathryn Towns of Delaney Hardware. Matte black is a great choice for farmhouse style because it can give off a modern or rustic feel, depending on the other elements you pair with it. 

 2 & 3. Brass. Polished finishes give off a more modern feel because they’re shiny. If you want a more modern feel, go with a polished brass. For a more rustic farmhouse vibe, choose a different finish on your brass, such as brushed or antique.

 4. Polished Chrome. While polished brass gives off a modern feel, polished chrome, on the other hand, is classic. It’s a popular finish for cottage style, so if you like mixing traditional or charming elements in your farmhouse, chrome will be a good look. It’s also less expensive than some of the other metals, so it’s a good budget purchase.

5. Brushed Nickel. As with other metals, a polished finish looks shiny, whereas an antique or brushed finish looks softer. If you want a silver color that doesn’t have too much shine, brushed nickel is a great pick. Nickel is more expensive than chrome, but also has a warmer hue than the colder hue of chrome.

 Love this look? Find out the staples of modern farmhouse style! Of course, don’t forget to follow us on InstagramFacebook and Pinterest for your daily dose of farmhouse inspiration!

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