Floating modern designs are always so pleasing to the eye. Modern architecture often works together to combine the materials of the past with the sleek lines of the present. Invoking something that combines the colors of nature with industrial materials is at the heart of modern-style architecture. For this residential area in Chicago, we wanted to invoke that modernist sensibility. The goal of this project was to create new handrails for the steps leading to an outdoor porch area.
Outdoor gathering spaces are important aspects of residential areas. They can be the place for a family picnic or a neighborhood get together. Sometimes an outdoor porch is just a nice space to sit outside and enjoy the sun. As the saying goes, ‘the journey is as important as the destination.’ These handrails become part of the journey going up to this outdoor porch and leaving at the end. They become part of the experience.
The stairwell at this Lake View Chicago residential area is walled in by pale stone and we wanted to choose a finish that was both bold and elegant. These round pipe handrails are made from wrought iron steel with a metallic bronze finish. The satin sheen gives them an aged and timeless look, perfectly accenting the light colors of the stones. They are affixed to the stone with rounded discs. This creates a visual contrast with the square cut brick, also bringing out the dark chinking between the stones.
The bronze finish is weather resistant and perfect for this outdoor location. Bronze is a great finish because it is very classic. The bronze tone has become extremely popular with household fixtures in recent years because it straddles that modern sensibility – the metal pieces are often sleek, but possess a color that borrows from the past.
The elegance of these custom simple handrails is not diminished by how practical and useful they are. With the smooth shape the handrails are easily gripped by hands of various sizes for safe movement up and down the stairs. It avoids sharp edges and can give the people on the stairs a sense of grounding. In the sun the metal warms and, in a way, shares the heartbeats of the movement through this outdoor space. It is nature and industrial modern design at work.
If you are interested in creating a unique feature for your outdoor space, please contact us and share your ideas. We have been serving the Chicagoland community as the leading design, fabrication and installation shop. We look forward to creating metalworks that are unique, beautiful, and practical for you.