On Wednesday, I featured an article on Iron and Glass Windows. This bookshelf from Project Decor is another example of these two materials working together to produce something aesthetically wonderful. The bookshelf has a clean, minimal design, but is enhanced by the smaller details. Firstly, the fact that the shelves are not all the same adds a little quirkiness to the product – almost a geometrical effect. Also, the frame of the bookshelf is made out of ridged iron (see image below), rather then the straight iron often used for furniture. This adds an interesting border, but does not overbear the simplicity of the design. Even though they have an industrial feel, I think that this bookshelf would fit in with most interiors.
The combination of glass and iron in design is very reminiscent of Victorian architecture. Some of my favourite buildings in this period were built with these materials, including London’s Crystal Palace, pictured above. This stunning piece of architecture was built in London’s Hyde Park to host the Great Exhibition of 1851. At the time of its construction, it included the most amount of glass ever used in a building. Resultantly, there was little need for interior lights as there was an abundance of natural lighting – hence Crystal Palace. Following the exhibition, the building was reconstructed in South London suburb, Sydenham Hill. It stood there until 1936 when it was sadly destroyed by a fire.
The design which was revolutionised in the industrial age still holds some inspiration for modern times. Windows made from steel and glass can work very well, especially in industrial inspired interiors. The thick steel lines which break up the extent of the glass add an interesting touch to the transparency. Below, I have selected some beautiful instances of this:
With modern décor, classic chandeliers have a tendency to look out of place. It is difficult to compliment the ornate sophistication which they ooze against a minimal backdrop. This Urban Hanging Chandelier by Uncovet bridges this gap, warmly welcoming the chandelier into the 21st century. The fixture consists of multiple light bulbs which are hung from reclaimed plywood. The plywood itself is hung from the ceiling with thick metal chains. The result is an industrialised light fixture that would look great in an urban inspired room. The product is enhanced further with the light bulbs being an array of shapes and sizes. This makes the item visually more appealing and will also create wonderful effects with light. The ambitious task of tackling a classic has been pulled off perfectly with this modern take on the chandelier.
One item that I loved from the Milan Furniture Fair 2013 was the Yoko light by Anderssen & Voll. The shade is based upon a bath bubble and provides the lamp with a gentle, almost ephemeral look. The pastel colours work really well with the soft design too. Fortunately, the lamp bubble won’t be bursting any time soon. Look how cool it looks in the home:
Gae Aulenti’s ‘Tour Table’ has a four foot square sheet of glass balanced on four bicycle wheels to create a rather unique looking table. When I first saw this table, I couldn’t really imagine it looking anything but novel in an interior. The photo below, however, shows that it can fit in perfectly against industrial decor. Bike wheels and brick walls go well it seems…
This Crank Table from Z Gallerie is a perfect example of classic design meeting industrialism. The transparent glass surface enables the crank feature of the table to be the focal point, but offers a certain subtlety against the harsh, masculinity of the metal. I really like the crank feature which attaches the table top to the stand and enables you to adjust the height of the table. It has an ‘inside out design’, making visible what would conventionally be hidden. The curved table legs act in a similar way to the glass, restricting the strong crank feature from overbearing the design. Overall, it is a clever idea which has been designed to perfection.