March 7, 2012


Material mix


Jørn Østby

Combination of materials

in Material mix By Jørn Østby

Why combine different materials and which combinations are the most suitable? Only your imagination will limit the possibilities you have.

Sometimes things fulfill each other, depend on each other or just go together. Yin and Yang! Warm and cold! Black and white! I imagine that sometimes things just fit well together. One reason could be that you want to highlight one material by combining it with a different material.

Gold details on a building is mainly used on special details, and highlighted by majority of the surface covered by more neutral colour. If it is not affordable to use the high price material on the whole surface, then why not combine it with a material that highlights the exclusive one? This is often seen on big surfaces, like airport floors. It could be that one big surface would look dull with only one material, then why not break the pattern by combining materials? As an example, I think how would the Vasilij-Cathedral in Kreml Moscow look if all the domes had the same colour? It could have a informative purpose, e.g. by integraging black stone arrows in a white stone floor to show the recommended direction to walk or tactile markings. These are just some reasons why materials are combined.

Which combination of materials is most suitable?
Then the next question is to decide which material to combine. A typical situation could be when you decide on your new kitchen. First you should decide if you want a kitchen in single or multiple colours or in natural wood? Let us say you go for a kitchen with natural oak cabinets and doors. Next step is to decide which granite you would like to have together with your oak kitchen. Is black granite a good combination with oak? Maybe blue granite is even a better alternative, in combination with a white kitchen?

Outdoor areas

A similar issue could be when you are planning your new outdoor area in the garden or your balcony. Let `s say you have decided to use wood deck in your exterior environment. Maybe it could be a good idea to combine it with a material such as granite which is durable in the most exposed areas. Or use a granite with low absorption in an area where you most likely will have food or liquid spills? Then you need to find out what combines well with the teak and have these properties. Could it be a grey or a blue granite?

Currently there are not many tools or apps available that help you to do this matching and selection of materials, but this is someting Lundhs hope to develop. In the meantime you can hopefully get some inspiration from some of our references. We also recommend you to visit our project galleries, you can also order some samples to get started with selection of which material to use for your purpose here.

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