10 Cool Ways to Use Stainless Steel in Home Design—From Front Doors to Fireplaces

You have to look hard to spot the stainless steel accent in the kitchen of this midcentury-inspired condo on Lake Michigan, but that’s part of the appeal. A thin shelf with hidden supports, which prides function with minimal space, forms part of the design by Chicago-based firm En Masse Architecture and Design in collaboration with Andreas Kokkino. By design, the slender profile of the floating shelf all but disappears into the grout line of the ceramic backsplash, allowing the homeowner to showcase their glassware and other objects that please the eye.

Lighten up the mantel

Stainless steel surrounds the fireplace in this Chelsea apartment by Bond, making the space even brighter.

Eric Petschek

When you have a small space, it typically pays off to have a statement piece. Designer Noam Dvir of Bond—an AD PRO Directory–listed studio—reimagined the dark, heavy brick fireplace surround in this 450-square-foot apartment in Manhattan’s West Chelsea neighborhood to lighten the space and help balance the proportions of the room. “Stainless steel is unequivocally a New York material,” Dvir says. “Think of the subway, the food carts, and newsstands that you see on every corner. We were inspired by the use of stainless steel in the streets of Manhattan and thought it could work well in a domestic setting.”

The studio stepped out of the box for the fabrication of this design element, too, using a kitchen vendor from the Bowery neighborhood in the Lower East Side, where many restaurants go to get their supplies, tablewares, and more. “It’s one piece that slid on top of the fireplace,” Dvir says. “Aside from its aesthetic character, it’s also relatively inexpensive and faster to fabricate [than more typical surrounds].”

Take it outside

A stainless steel sheet forms a privacy screen for an outdoor shower in East Hampton

This oasis is tucked away on a tree-lined street near the historical village of East Hampton, New York, and is another project in which Bond—in collaboration with Attn Attn—chose to inject stainless steel. “The house has a beautiful English-style garden, with large trees and lush hedges which create a very private feeling,” Dvir says. They added a contemporary element into this traditional space by using the six-by-six-foot stainless steel square with a knife edge to act as a privacy screen for the outdoor shower just off the pool. “It looks like a cutout in the landscape,” he adds. Its brushed finish also creates a gentle, distorted reflection of the surroundings.

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