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An Ode to Chrome Decor: 23 Shiny Objects With a Touch of Luxury | Architectural Digest


It all started with a chrome chair. To be specific, it was Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s cantilever chair. Most people flock to the Barcelona chair, but the corset back on the MR chair makes me drool puddles. Although there are many reasons why the Bauhaus era is so iconic, I get weak in the knees just thinking about the curves of those tubular steel seat frames. Marcel Breuer’s Cesca chair is another hot seat that’s never going out of style, along with the Wassily chair. In the off chance that you disagree, the fashion stylist Mel Reneé Leamon will gladly back me up here!

The dining room in a Mario Buatta-designed apartment in New York City featuring a pair of silver pheasants and roosters as the centerpiece with silver candelabras and a silver urn rest.

Photo: Peter Vitale

Truth be told, I had an eye for silver trinkets long before chairs ever occupied my thoughts—I have my mother to thank for that as we spent much of our time together throughout my childhood using antique silvers at tea parties. On the journey to womanhood, most girls will experience that pivotal coming-of-age moment when they watch Breakfast at Tiffany’s for the first time and never look at jewelry the same way. Audrey Hepburn certainly made a strong case for sterling silver and clearly influenced me when I was a teenager because all I fantasized about was being dripped out in Tiffany & Co. designs.

As I got older, I became fixated on luxury home goods such as the Tiffany Tea—an exclusive collaboration with Bellocq—and the signature sterling silver paper cup. I’m all for mixing metals, but the sparkle of chrome just hits different. It’s the metallic crossover where minimalist meets maximalist. I could go on and on about this for hours because I’m a Taurus, so without further ado, here are 23 of my silver selects. (For an even more pleasurable reading experience, please listen to Charli XCX’s 2019 banger “Silver Cross” while scrolling.)

Image may contain: Pot, Kettle, and Pottery

Alessi Michael Graves Series Stainless Steel Creamer & Sugar Bowl Set – Black

I’m a sucker for Alessi accessories and this set is a really sweet deal.

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Tubo Bookend in Stainless Steel

I’ve had Bi-Rite bookends on my wish list for a minute, but now that there’s a stainless steel version available I might have to pull the trigger once and for all. Cat Snodgrass has done it again!

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Izabel Lam Salad Serving Set

As far as I’m concerned, Izabel Lam can design all of my silverware!

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I’m a huge fan of Kristin Dickson-Okuda’s work and this hand distressed, stainless steel mug really speaks to me on a deep level.

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1960s Lino Sabattini Cestino Bread Basket Italy Silver Plate

The Fetish Priest originally put me on to the exquisite collectables of Lino Sabattini, and I am so much better for it.

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Pressure Vase Square Chrome by Tim Teven Studio

What I love about Tim Teven’s Pressure vase is how he evokes softness through chrome. Fun fact: Each piece is made from a steel tube that is deformed by 45 metric tons of pressure.

Image may contain: Lamp, Table Lamp, and Lampshade

Tom Dixon Silver Bell Table Light

This table lamp was made for mushroom enthusiasts of the future.

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Kartell Componibili 3-Door Storage Cabinet

Anna Castelli’s Componibili design for Kartell is a classic, and the chrome colorway has become harder to find these days. It’s also available in silver, but you’ll notice differences between the finishes.

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Vintage Midcentury Space Age Chrome Orb Table Lamp

Robert Sonneman’s chrome lamps are having a moment right now because of the Space Age revival, so don’t miss out while they’re still affordable on the vintage market. Whenever I see any lamps in his style I’m reminded of a glamorous Hollywood dressing room.

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Georg Jensen Manhattan Champagne Bowl

Calling all VIP at-home bottle services! Channel your inner Star Jones.

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Jean Dubost Laguiole 20-Piece Flatware Set

If you invest in one of these sets now, you’ll never need to spend another dime on flatware ever again.

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Bold Plates by Stine Keinicke

Have your cake and eat it too with a set of Stine Keinicke’s hand spun stainless steel plates.

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SMEG Silver Retro-Style Electric Kettle, 1.7 L, CA/US

If I saw this kettle on a countertop, I would simply have to drop everything.

Image may contain: Vase, Pottery, Jar, Flower, Ikebana, Ornament, Flower Arrangement, Plant, Art, Blossom, and Potted Plant

Georg Jensen Stainless Steel Large Alfredo Vase

This polished stainless steel vase will make any floral arrangement shine—literally.

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I’m sorry, but Eileen Gray snapped when she designed this table for ClassiCon back in 1927. (If DWR is out of your budget, there are plenty of replicas to be found on Etsy.)

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Stelton Original Flower Watering Can

This silver watering can is ideal for all the plant parents out there.

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Gigi Polished Stainless Steel Floor Lamp

How I don’t already have this floor lamp is a mystery that needs to be solved ASAP. (If you’d prefer something a little smaller, the table lamp is a great option as well.)

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David Chipperfield Silver Alessi Edition Moka Coffee Pot, 150 mL

Did somebody say moka?

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Tesso Chrome 84″ Bookcase

Because you can never go wrong with a bookshelf.

Image may contain: File Binder, File Folder, and Sink Faucet

Kartell Magazine Rack – Silver

This magazine rack offers another way to read the room.

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Chiara LED Table in Aluminum

Once again, consider me influenced by Vivid Wu! Mario Bellini didn’t have to go so hard.

Image may contain: Lamp, Furniture, Table, Coffee Table, Tabletop, Jar, Pottery, and Vase

The dining collection that Warren Platner designed for Knoll is on my wish list, but I would gladly settle for a side table while I save up. This inspired table light version from Betsu Studio in Philly offers the best of both worlds.

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Vintage Modern Brass and Glass Etagere by DIA

I recently acquired my dream chrome etagere in the style of Milo Baughman and the Design Institute of America’s midcentury masterpiece. (Shoutouts to vintage pros The Swan’s House for sourcing!) These come in so many shapes, sizes, and prices—the key is waiting until you find the one that suits your style.


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