Getting cre8ive with materials: part two

While timber, solid surface materials and glass are among the most regularly specified materials we work with, nothing is off-limits. We can source virtually any material or finish to realise an architect or client’s vision. What’s more, we’re always on the lookout for new high-tech materials or innovative ways to use more traditional materials differently.

 

Marble

The trend for marble has been popular for some time, thanks to its visually attractive swirls and veins combined with its natural density – making it as hardwearing as it is stylish.

We’re able to supply marble surfaces in a range of colours, and while it’s usually highly polished to showcase its natural features, it can also come in a matt or aged finish if this is better suited to the style. We’ve designed and manufactured an impressive marble reception desk most recently for an office refurbishment on Aldwych in central London, with the marble carefully chosen to match wall panels.

Reception desk

Due to it being a natural material, marble is rarer and has limited availability, making it expensive to specify and work with. However, manufacturers have developed an array of alternative man-made materials using natural quartz mineral to create products like Silestone® and Caesarstone® which are similar in appearance to marble. As well as being more readily available than mined marble, they can also be manufactured in a range of different colours, textures and patterns including veining to mirror the look of natural marble.

Such marble-like materials are becoming a popular choice among specifiers in the commercial and residential sectors and not just because of their aesthetic properties. Quartz is one of nature’s hardest materials, making quartz-based materials incredibly hardwearing. Silestone and Caesarstone are both stain resistant, making them easy to clean and maintain.

Metal

Available in various types and grades, metal remains a popular choice for interiors. Not only is it diverse – it can be cast or shaped into any bespoke design – but it’s also hardwearing and durable, and can be a more environmentally-friendly option as it is recyclable.

Metal is a timeless material, yet it lends itself perfectly to modern trends, particularly the popular industrial style and in recent years we’ve noticed a distinct move away from the flawless and shiny chrome or stainless steel options with architects and designers increasingly favouring other metals including brass and copper as well as black ironmongery.

On one recent project, the client wanted a metal reception desk front with a rusted surface rather than something brand-new and metallic. We achieved this unique finish in our factory by applying a selection of chemicals to a cold rolled steel to speed up the ageing process and make it rust a little to create the attractive brown orange tones on the surface.

CapCo reception desk

Concrete

While concrete was used as a purely practical material in the past thanks to its hardwearing nature and durability, we’re seeing an increased demand for its use in interior design, especially as part of the current industrial inspired trend. Ideal for many applications, from floors to wall panelling, and even furniture, concrete is proving to be the perfect answer to requirements for industrial aesthetics combined with a need for durability.

As part of a recent refurbishment project at the offices of an independent asset investment company, we installed a reception desk created from concrete cladding, providing a sleek modern finish while another project required concrete faced wall panelling in the reception area.

Concrete Panelling

FENIX NTM®

An acrylic resin surface created using nanotechnology by Italian manufacturer Arpa Industriale, FENIX laminate offers an impressive array of benefits as well as a unique super matt appearance – making it a popular choice with designers wanting to deliver the perfect balance of form and function.

Not only is it anti-fingerprint, hydro repellent and resistant to scratches and abrasion, it is also thermally self-healing. Extremely matt with low light reflectivity, FENIX NTM ® is soft to the touch and is available in a wide range of colours. It is perfect for high specification projects and lends itself for use on a number of different applications – including office kitchen areas, reception desks and washrooms.

Black Fenix laminate worktops

If you’ve got a project in mind, why not get in touch with the team today to find out how we can bring your vision to life.

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