4 Design Pros Predict What Comes After the Matte Black Hardware Craze

Their picks are fresh but still timeless.
kitchen with wood cabinets and black hardware
Belle Morizio

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First there was stainless steel, then came antiqued brass, but now, whether the style is Scandinavian or modern farmhouse, it seems as if every knob, handle, and pull is matte black. Of course, like any trend, the cycle must (eventually) continue on. And while we don’t think people will grow sick of the streamlined look anytime soon, we’re itching to know what they’ll try in their next project. To settle our curiosity, we tapped four designers to give us their predictions for hardware’s future. Hint: It might be none at all. 

The Hidden Hardware

Courtesy of Project AZ

The access to soft-close mechanisms for both drawers and doors is pushing designers and consumers more and more toward eliminating the use of any hardware altogether. While using knobs and pulls can very much be an aesthetic moment in a space, taking hardware away makes a different kind of visual statement, one that highlights the details, materials, and colors of the furniture itself. —Ahmad AbouZanat, Project AZ 

The Silvery Side

Courtesy of Murphy Maude Interiors

Anything goes in terms of materials at the moment. I’m finding people are a little tired of seeing brass everywhere. I have been looking at pewter finishes and am even doing both a bathroom and a kitchen in nickel instead of brass. —Sharon Rembaum, Rembaum Interior Design

Brushed or chrome nickel is such a timeless and classic material to incorporate into a space. Paired with either a bold tile or darker-toned stone and cabinetry, it allows for contrast to make the hardware pop! —Leslie Murphy, Murphy Maude Interiors

The Gleaming Gunmetal

Courtesy of Holloway Li

Hardware-wise, we love using a gunmetal finish. It provides an interesting depth between the color of black and bronze. Its warmth works particularly well against a raw material backdrop—for example, a cast-iron panel in our recently completed project, the Market Building, for bathroom brand Coalbrook in London. —Na Li, cofounder, Holloway Li

Kate McGregor


Kate McGregor covers everything related to the home, from design inspiration to IKEA hacks. She has been the market assistant at ELLE Decor where she focused on curating product for the print magazine’s market pages.