Chic metallic accents, distressed finishes, black trimming, edgy aura – see, you can already imagine it! The industrial style is one of those machine-age inspired aesthetics that have taken a life form of its own since its conception back in the day. Inspired from the raw components of old factories and warehouses, this style has spawned an entire line of design-based realities – and yes, that includes furniture as well!
But – in order to actually understand the concept behind industrial style furniture, you need to first look at what really makes this style so attractive. So let’s journey through the metamorphosis and see what industrial style furniture can offer to your design-hungry palate!
Origins: From Murky To Trendy
Remember back in the twentieth-century when designers were experimenting with different materials and our basic concept of ‘aesthetic’ was transforming? Well, the rugged charm of corrugated finishes and simple colors translated so well in the urban conversion of lofts and living spaces that it really caught on in the early 2000s. Suddenly, the utilitarian aesthetic of the industrial style became infinitely more desirable and articulating it through distressed textures and understated colors was simply not enough!
This is where the plot thickened in this story as designers once again delved in experimental detailing – and lo and behold; industrial style furniture and accessories finally came into being! While no one can track the exact timeline of this evolution, you can bet that the industrial style furniture was definitely the newfound asset to the whole design community. From trendy floor lamps to distressed consoles, dressers, sideboards, buffets, platform beds, dining tables and more, this style is now a hardcore contemporary favorite, while the concept of Industrial Chic has become quite timeless.
The major visual traits of Industrial Furniture
So now that you’re acquainted with the origin story, you must be asking – how can I detect when a furniture piece is featured within the ‘industrial style’ category, right? So here, we’ve compiled a list of visual tells that can help you detect authentic from the posers!
The industrial style aesthetic, at its core is quite humble, so you’ll notice a lot of distressed, mismatched finishes in such furniture. If you appreciate a timeworn, ageless sort of look, then this furniture style is definitely your cup of tea.
Dull Metal trimming
You must be wondering what ‘trimming’ is, right? It’s kind of an outline that defines the edges of a furniture piece. Many industrial furniture piece feature a dull metal trimming to give it a bold edge. This is especially true for those stylish old-school chest-style buffets and sideboards.
Worn metal accents
You can find all sorts of metal accents on industrial style furniture. Some feature dull, stylishly understated metal finishes while others are adorned with brighter accents like copper and brushed nickel.
For those of you who don’t know, Steampunk is a sci-fi genre which combines historical aesthetics with advanced modern tech. It was inspired by 19th-century industrial steam-powered machinery. So basically, a lot of highlights from this style is incorporated in industrial style furniture. These may include cog-style wheels, copper accents and other refurbished materials.
Dull & bright colors
Here’s where things get interesting. While the majority of the industrial style furnishings boast a wide range of dull colors a la greys and browns, some other pieces – especially ones made of reclaimed wood –tend to feature a mismatched colorful finish. Depending on the kind of ambiance you’re going for, you can opt for either one.
Raw unfinished aesthetic
You’ll see a lot of weathered wood in industrial style furniture pieces. The more battered and worn it looks, the more stylish the furniture comes off. Sometimes, the entire furniture piece is made of solid iron!
Functionality as style
Another tell you can count on to identify an authentic industrial style piece is that it features functionality as a design element. For example, oversized caster wheels, nuts and bolts along with exposed cabinet parts are deliberately used to highlight the pragmatic aspects of the furniture by design.
Casters or metal base
Many industrial style furniture pieces feature small and large casters to enhance its functionality. If not casters, then most authentic industrial style furniture features an iron base to complement its wooden parts.
Industrial reclaimed wood is the new “New”
If you’re an environmentalist at heart and are searching for the most eco-friendly furniture choices then the industrial style is going to be your best companion. The rugged, age-worn appeal of this style is quite stunningly articulated through reclaimed wood.
Such kind of wood is salvaged from objects that have lived past their age – old boats, large timber beams and more – but can be artfully revived through other means. Industrial style furniture looks especially charming when crafted from reclaimed wood. Its aesthetical utility is absolutely authentic. The mismatched wooden finishes look chic, the reclaimed iron wheel give of a retro sophistication and you’ll never find a style that embraces eco-friendliness like this one!
Industrial Furniture With Popular Styles
So now you must be wondering just how you can incorporate a stylish industrial style furniture piece in your interior designs. So to help you come up with some unique ideas, we’ve compiled a list of few interior design styles you can pair this style of furnishings with. Let’s take a look
The warm, organic and natural quality of a rustic style interior could be the perfect counterpart to your industrial style furniture! All those woodsy accents and browns are definitely going to highlight the unique charm of an industrial style piece.
The mismatched-eclectic vibe of the contemporary ambiance is always a welcoming niche for industrial style furniture pieces. In fact, we’ve got the perfect recommendation for you to style your contemporary style feature wall. Our industrial black and brown 4 door buffet cabinet is a trifecta of quality-vision-pragmatics. Made of solid iron, this amazing piece features a double cabinet design where each door can be individually padlocked. It’s simple, easy
The retro style is always a blend of vintage nostalgia and contemporary trends, which is why industrial style furniture is the perfect choice for this kind of a setting. Such furniture would blend right within the fun, eclectic aura of the retro theme.
Scandinavian StyleIf you’re more of a low-key, comfort-before-style, casual sort of a person, then you can even style your Scandinavian interiors with industrial style furniture. The earthy color scheme and metal accents would greatly complement the understated yet trendy elegance of this particular style!
So how did you like your journey through the life and times of the industrial style furniture? It’s definitely a trendsetter, and if you’re looking for the perfect blend of cozy, stylish and pragmatic, then you’ll not find anything better!