9 Unusual Materials That Will Give Your Home a Custom Look
Showcase the look of luxe through the use of wovens, resin and glass in the home
Some of these products have been around for ages but were previously used in different contexts or environments; today’s production techniques have helped simple materials achieve sophisticated designs. Other products are newcomers, still on the cusp of recognition.
This woven 3-D surface wall treatment is available in many colour options. It was once only seen in commercial projects but has become more popular in residences.
Fibre glass-reinforced gypsum board panels come in tiles and are screwed to a substrate. The seams are mudded and sanded by a skilful contractor to create a continuous effect.
This leather lookalike rubber product has a beautiful tactile warmth and is available in three different hues: Natural, chocolate (shown here) and black.
Since it’s a rubber product, it’s easy to maintain and suitable for kitchen and bathroom cabinetry.
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Steel has amazing potential and can take on many different personalities, from modern and stark to tactile and warm.
Stainless steel isn’t used just as a sheet metal today. In new applications, stainless steel pieces are linked together like chain mail or woven into screens.
This photo shows a woven stainless steel stairwell screen, accentuated by LED lighting at night.
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Laminated glass is made of various flat products sandwiched between two sheets of glass; it has a high-end, pressed look.
Coloured glass works beautifully with this application, too. Mirror can be used as a backing for an opaque, reflective insert in a closet door. You can try playing with frosted glass, Starphire or ultra clear glass or different fabric inlays.
Laminated resin is often used as a cabinet door insert or for lamp shades, but it can also be applied on a larger scale. The skilful mix of laminated resin in this photo gives a workspace the calm quality of a Japanese tearoom.
This bathroom’s curved cabinet has high-pressure laminate fronts that show just how far laminate has come in the past few years. The Italians have been laminate masters since the 1950s. Today’s laminates mimic textured faux woods, have 3-D effects and come in a range of colours and metallic surfaces.
Unfortunately, not all of these products are easy to find if you’re not working with a design professional. I’d suggest getting samples from companies and then taking them to a carpenter who’s open to working with these products.
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8. Textured glass counters
Laminated layers of glass can be built up to 10 centimetres thick, with a wide range of textures for the bottom layer. The texture on the bottom creates an appealing visual effect and hides any surface scratches.
Although it’s marketed as a commercial-grade product, Plynyl would make for great low-maintenance headboards or kitchen banquette upholstery.
Have you experimented with any unique materials in your home? Tell us in the Comments below.