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modern faucet

Faucets have come a long way from functional objects to artistic, stylish home features. Add sculptural flair to your water with these trends.

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I was going through my regular round of home and design blogs, and I read this great post by FreshHome about the new line of 3-D printed faucets by American Standard.

Priced at $12,000+ and made to order, these faucets are beautifully intricate, adding a sculptural and artistic style to objects that are usually just there for function rather than form. 3-D printing, of course, enables American Standard to build objects that would be otherwise impossible to manufacture on a large scale because of their complexity.

This post made me want to look at the interesting but under-reported world of sculptural faucets. There are plenty of ways to get water from the pipe to the sink (or bath), and not all of them do so with the typical faucet. In fact, more and more we see remodels with original, artistic and sculptural faucets that subtly change the entire atmosphere of a room. Let’s have a look.

Vintage faucets: bring back the ’20s!

Interestingly, one of the main trends in sculptural faucets is the Old World faucet that used to exist in the 20s: a high, straight bar with a visible joint and a bridge at a right angle, along with vertical handles.

Tropical Kitchen by Lahaina Kitchen & Bath Designers Tervola Designs

This kind of faucet, not seen much in today’s minimalist design tastes, adds a touch of Old World charm to any kitchen or bathroom. The retro design is sculptural in itself, with its high profile and retro handles covered in plastic or natural stone.

The vintage faucet can also have a more industrial look, with the 4-pronged handles and pipe-looking spout. These are great for lofts and industrial spaces, and come in different colors and finishes. Copper is especially great at giving an old-timey industrial look.

Traditional Bathroom by Austin General Contractors RisherMartin Fine Homes

What I love about vintage faucets is that you don’t need to go very far back in time to find the kind of sculptural, eye-stopping faucet that’s perfect for your space. Bathroom and kitchen designs that speak to the history of plumbing and mix traditional ideas in new combinations are among my favorites.

Wall and ceiling faucets

The water doesn’t always have to come from right above the sink. Looking at some faucet designs, I found an interesting trend of wall- and ceiling-mounted faucets that are totally original and give a new direction (literally) to water supply.

Imagine looking at water cascade down a beautiful brushed metal, curved wall-mounted faucet before it reaches your hands. This idea has undeniable design appeal. Linked with contemporary design and luxury hotels, these faucets transform the experience of something as simple as washing your hands.

Contemporary Powder Room by Scottsdale Interior Designers & Decorators IMI Design, LLC

Ceiling faucets can also change the way a bathroom looks. Bonus: it saves space if your counter is narrow–no need to save space for the faucet at the back of the sink.

Ceiling faucets add a vertical dimension to decor elements that are typically conceived in horizontal terms. They bring the eyes up towards the ceiling, opening up spaces that are often small and cramped. Ceiling faucets come in plenty of colors and finishes as well–you can have an industrial look with copper piping, or a more modern approach with minimal or organic designs.

Modern Bathroom by Winnetka Architects & Building Designers Robbins Architecture

Open faucets

But my absolute favourite sculptural faucet trend is something I call the “open” faucet (because they don’t seem to have a specific name other than “modern”). Open faucets are the kinds of faucets where you can see the water at least part of the way–imagine removing the top half of your current faucet and seeing the water come down the pipe.

I love these “open-faced” faucets because they use the light-reflecting characteristics of water to add a visual dimension to the act of washing your hands or running a bath. Whenever I come across these faucets, I can’t help but stare at how beautiful water is when it runs along the shiny metal spout and cascades down the sink.

Contemporary Bathroom by Grand Rapids Architects & Building Designers Lucid Architecture

There’s also a natural beauty to it. In nature, water cascades down, on top and around trees and rocks and mountain faces. Open-faced faucets bring back a bit of the uncontrollable nature and beauty of a waterfall.

Modern Bathroom by Newport Beach Kitchen & Bath Designers maestrobath

Faucets don’t have to be boring

Look at your kitchen or bathroom sink faucet. Mine are pretty boring. Even though they are small items, the difference an original, sculptural faucet can make is actually quite big.

Have you seen interesting faucet designs lately? Are you thinking of changing your faucets to something more original, artistic, sculptural? Let us know in the comments!

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Anabelle Bernard Fournier

Anabelle is a freelance writer, writing teacher and blogger. She spends a lot of time at home, so she likes to make sure that it's cozy and nice, especially in her reading nook. In her free time, Anabelle knits, walks and learns how to write stories.