Modern Glam: metallics for home and fashion

If pushing the boundaries is your thing and having a decorating scheme that makes your heart skip a beat every time you walk in a room, then this one could be one for you. ‘Modern Glam’ certainly has the ‘It Factor’ and cries out to be noticed.

We have all heard similar phrases which have been uttered a million times over, often on interiors TV programmes where house buyers are trying to let their poor beleaguered estate agent understand exactly what kind of property they are after. This elusive ingredient is often termed the ‘Wow Factor’. ‘Modern Glam’ most definitely falls into this category too. It showcases shiny metallics such as copper, brass, bronze and gold as either the main focus or as supporting act to a decorating scheme.

Gold kitchen/Pinterest
Gold kitchen/Pinterest


Metallics and gold in particular don’t always sum up the idea of good taste and style but I would like you to stick with me on this one as I take you on a tour through the burgeoning metallics trend.

This trend has its roots in Mid Century (1950s) design through to ‘1970s glam’. Metallics are everywhere in the UK this season from fabrics by G P & J Baker to wallpapers by Harlequin, Romo and Cole and Son (when styling budgets are tight I turn to a very decent £14/roll plain gold wallpaper from B&Q – which set decorators tell me goes onto the walls as well as any).


The biggest ‘metallics’ statements are made by metal wall panels and by furniture – check out pieces at Nicholas Haslam, Porta Romana, Sweetpea and Willow, to name but a few. High Street favourites such as Zara Home (please Zara can we have more UK nationwide home stores!) H & M, John LewisWest Elm and Next have some very affordable well-designed furniture and accessories.


Go for Gold

Jacqui Dunton, co-founder of interiors boutique Sweetpea & Willow, believes that “Our love of metallics in interiors is here to stay, whether you prefer to opt for a shimmering of gold in your decorating scheme or floor to ceiling lustre, add a touch of interest to the home with metallic accessories and create a glamorous, boutique look.”


Bronze beauty

I have pretty much always adored every piece of furniture and lighting design that Ochre has produced. Make no mistake, these are investment pieces – antiques of the future even, but they always manage to strike the perfect balance between design, form and function using luxurious materials  – all without ever a hint of overdoing it.

Seed Cloud series pendant light, cast bronze with glass tempered drops,

Cool copper

Less ‘bling’ than gold and warmer in tone than silver or chrome, Copper isn’t traditionally considered a luxurious material. The last time that it was used extensively in the home was in the early 20th Century Arts & Crafts Era. Beaten copper became a favourite with designers for door hinges, mirrors and trays (original pieces in good condition still hold their value in auction house sale rooms today).

These days, designers are giving it a more industrial twist with up-cycled copper pipe lighting and exposed copper pipe taps. Look out too for Next’s new ‘Shoreditch’ copper coloured metal bed frame, £375 for a double.



Mirror is often used in bathrooms to create a bit more depth to a room.  This use of copper, does the same thing but is less obvious and adds another textural element:

Courtesy of Pinterest

I love the contrast of this luxurious bath with black matt exterior and shiny copper interior.

Copper Batteau,

Gold Rush

Well, what can I say. This is where I got convinced that I should write this metallics post. Made by a Portuguese company based in Oporto called Essential Home, this ‘Monocles’ sideboard in its setting with dark wood panelling and a black and white image of Roger Moore (as 007) is what ‘Modern Glam’ is all about.


Three decorating ideas for ‘Modern Glam’

  1.  Copper and Gold both look terrific with pale pink and pale grey. Materials such as concrete ( do a great faux concrete wallpaper) and dark wood panelling are also ‘perfect partners’.
  2. image

2.  Darker shades such as Midnight blues and indigos or very dark greys and blacks make sure that the overall effect is smart and not ‘bling’.

Courtesy of Pinterest

3.  Consider too emerald greens and rich turquoise

‘Damselfly’ bronze wall lights from Seed Cloud series,

STYLE NOTE: to avoid complete ‘metallics style meltdown’, it is best to avoid reds altogether.

Fashion gold – Shelly Vella tells us how to wear it for Spring/Summer 2016

Shelly Vella, Fashion Director, The Stylish

As fashion and home trends so often go hand in hand, I thought I would take advice from one of fashion’s ‘front row’ elite. Fashion Director Shelly Vella (ex Cosmopolitan Fashion Director) writes a wonderful fashion blog called The Stylish Stuff (as well as styling some of retail’s top fashion collections in her spare time!) Here are Shelly’s great tips on how to wear metallics:

“Every season there’s always a trick on hand to aid you in updating your wardrobe classics, this Spring look to metallic highlights to lift your look. Shoes, bags, even a belt. An aged metallic is preferable, think old gold, oxidised silvers and tarnished bronze ones. Favourites include:

Mulberry’s delicious old gold ‘Clemmie’ Clutch. Soft, squidgy and perfect for tucking under the arm of an evening. Jigsaw’s ‘Camile’ pointed flat – this is your go to slip on. Stylish, comfortable and available in pewter and bronze. GREAT with jeans and a striped Breton.

Reiss’s ‘Frances’ chain-link belt in gold is perfect for that classy hit of nowness. The perfect surprise accessory to add to tailoring in faded neutral hues. Keep everything else simple and let the belt do the talking.

Finally, take a look at the Made collection stocked at Whistles. Hand crafted in Kenya this is affordable, ethical jewellery with serious style credentials. Very organic in feel and in beaten gold or silver plate; a pile of bangles, a statement earring or a double layered pendant will make any outfit shine.”

Follow Shelly on Twitter and Instagram @shellyvella

Charis White, interior stylist



Thank you so much for reading!  If you have enjoyed this post and would like to receive email alerts for future posts, then please press the large ‘Follow’ button either at the beginning or end of this post.  Charis x

2 thoughts on “Modern Glam: metallics for home and fashion

  1. Well this is not for me! One of my nieces loves all the copper pipeing candlesticks etc, but this has given me some great ideas for updating the boyspace at the top of the house!

    Liked by 1 person

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