Rustic Kitchen Designs with Brass
When designing your dream kitchen or other environment, consider a few of the ideas below to achieve an authentic feel with a lasting impact.
For a rustic design, choose materials that are natural, or as close to it, as possible. Ask questions like, "how far away was this made?" or "what will we do with this material when we want to get rid of it? Is it reusable, recyclable or does it become land fill?" The rustic kitchen, bar, or lounge will have materials that are simple in purpose, free of resins, polymers, or other man-made materials AND offer a secondary, renewable, or continuous use.
Brass countertops do fit these criteria. Brass is made from two of the elements from the periodic table that are naturally found on the planet - copper and zinc. Additionally, brass is recyclable and the wood that we use for our substrates is FSC certified and is made with biomimicry inspired adhesive.
The natural finish of brass has a golden base color and ages toward a dark brown with use. This ever-changing patina on brass surfaces reacts to how it is used. Heavy traffic areas are buffed down to the shiny, golden brass, while areas that are infrequently used will age to a darker brown with time. Learn more about what to expect on our "Appearance" page.
As with any appliance, energy usage should be the first thing to analyze as this will help you control your living, or operating, expenses. Energy Star appliances help a rustic kitchen design stay true to function. In addition to energy consumption, appliances should be analyzed with the same questions as above, "how far away was it made?" and "where does it go when we are done with it?" and a new question, "how long is it expected to last?"
Energy Star appliances are rated as such for using less energy during their lifetimes. In addition to energy use, it can be helpful to look at where appliances are made. Rustic kitchens, the really stick to the theme, would use nearby resources and this would extend to where appliances are made. If you can get range hoods, refrigerators and more made in the United States, this will help you stay authentic to a rustic kitchen.
While the color of a "rustic kitchen" may be dictated by your entire home design, simple guidelines can help you get the right palette. One quick way to choose colors is to look out the window - what colors are in the view during the various seasons of the year? Can you incorporate those colors or their contrasting color?
In addition to natural colors for inspiration, the material choices can dictate paint colors. Flooring and cabinets can provide a base color, while appliances and countertops can add more flair. One unique aspect of brass countertops for a rustic, old-world look is that their finish is always changing. The brass provides a golden base color, but the patina that forms with use is brown and the pattern is based on your use. Look at our photo gallery for examples of how brass countertops age and how they can complete the look of a nature-inspired kitchen.
Finally, why go rustic (aka, country, old world, country French, and more)?
Natural tones, materials and design are timeless. Many kitchen designs can be specifc to a period or decade and after 10-15 years, the look that once was cutting edge is now outdated. Relying on the nearby natural resouces - rough hewn woods, reclaimed materials, metals that patina - all of these traits are key elements in timeless design. One of the principles of sustainable kitchen design is to design for longevity and minimize the need to remodel. Products such as countertops, cabinets, and flooring should last lifetimes. Paint, appliances and other kitchen elements can be refreshed more often to keep up with technology and provide a renewed look with less consumption.
Brass countertops may not be right for every rustic kitchen design, but you may want to consider a brass range hood for a focal point that is elegant, yet still rustic. See more range hoods from our Copperworks division and BrassRangeHoods.com. We also make countertops in copper and zinc that fit in well with rustic kitchen designs.