The Appeal Of Modern Hardware

Clean Lines with a nod to the classics

I am constantly drawn to the clean lines of modern hardware. It seems however, that no matter how modern the design, that the most successful designs nod to more classic traditional counterparts. Often what gives a piece of hardware a modern twist is in the finish or by simply streamlining the contours.

As always I put Made in Maine products into a special category. That said, there is a specialty hardware company here in Maine that fits the bill. Lowe Hardware started in a 1,600 sq. ft. barn built by Bill Lowe in the coastal town of Owls Head, ME. The son of a Deer Isle boat builder and yacht skipper, Bill had extensive boat building and repair experience, cultivating a career in yacht hardware. Formally educated as a machinist, the shop’s leader focused on the intricate details required to complete large custom projects. Upon his son Elliot’s graduation from the University of Maine with a degree in mechanical engineering, the shop turned to focus on developing their business to serve the demand for top quality customizable interior hardware. Lowe hardware is producing timeless, durable hardware using both modern and time tested traditions.

Lately I have been intrigued by the barn door and its applications in interior applications. Although the traditional barn door track available at local farm supply stores work great I continually find myself attracted to more modern takes on the tried-and-true. Many of the updated versions use materials and engineering for a smoother more reliable action.

In a door knob I find that it is important that the knob is appealing in its feel. This is how it feels to the touch, how it feels in its action. Emtek is a company that is made in the good old USA. They have mastered this to a tee. Emtek is bringing interesting, well made hardware back into American homes. Up to the 1930s, there was a proud history of hardware production in America. Hundreds of small factories made an enormous variety of creatively designed products. Craftsmen from many disciplines devoted their energies to making locks that provided both function and beauty. We are re-discovering the satisfaction that comes from owning well designed products. Emtek is creating an interesting range of products that are as much a way to latch a door as an element of decor.

No matter how long I look, I am always finding new and attractive ways to add beauty to furniture and spaces, always with an eye on function.