The shimmery look works well with lighter tones such as whites and taupes, said Anthony Cox, executive vice president for product development for furniture maker Theodore Alexander. The moderate sheen adds sophistication and glamour to those light tones, said Cox, whose company introduced luminous pieces at High Point that included a neoclassical sofa with accent pillows in a light-reflecting silk velvet and a boxy cocktail table finished in burnished silver.
Stronger colors, on the other hand, might be overpowering with the addition of shine, Burvikovs noted.
“I think it’s more pleasing to the eye if it isn’t a bold color,” she said. “… It’s got to be livable still.”
One of the elements of the Candice Olson Collection that was getting attention was a wood finish Olson calls Glint, a warm combination of gold and silver. The finish was used to dramatic effect on a table base with an espresso wood top, Burvikovs said, and it’s especially effective because it doesn’t jump out at the viewer.
Bassett was showing similarly complex metallic finishes in the furniture it introduced for HGTV Home. Those finishes were accomplished by layering colors to produce more dimension and texture — a look that makes them play well with other metals in a house, Loper said.
The lustrous look has another benefit, too: Since the surfaces are reflective, they bring a bit more light into a room, Cox noted. Maybe that’s why they seem so inviting this time of year, when sunshine is at a premium.
A little bit of sparkle just makes us feel better, it seems — just like that perfect piece of jewelry.