Essential parameters to keep in mind while choosing architectural hardware

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The choice of architectural hardware can enhance the overall look and functionality of interior setup.As a general rule, selection of the right architectural hardware does not occupy a place of importance for home owners while designing interiors. Even though architectural fixtures play fundamental role in the overall functionality of interior, people most often tend to prioritise other aspects such as floorings, ceilings, etc. to beautifying the overall look. The right fittings can play a pivotal role in the look of modern home décor as far as the function and aesthetics of home interiors are concerned.
Builders today are cutting corners which creates space crunch and most often people do not turn to architects for right advice. They seek suggestions from carpenters which in turn creates high possibility of mismatched, outdated, or worse, of substandard quality architectural hardware. So here are a few quintessential tips to choose the right architectural hardware for your home.

The PVD effect
Physical Vapour Deposition (PVD) also called Permanent Visual Delight in layman’s idiom is a technique adopted for coating in architectural hardware to maintain their finish through the lifecycle. It is fundamentally a finish wherein the hardware fitting is coated with a thin film of a corrosion-resistant material to ensure their long life. Nowadays the hardware replacement cycles are getting shorter with the concept of interior designing becoming aspirational middle-class. Hence, consumers want their products to ‘look and perform as new’ during their entire lifecycle. This is where the PVD architectural hardware have created a niche and generally people are not aware about their benefits.
Consumers preference are moving towards the satin steel and satin nickel finishes while choosing interior hardware as it beautifies the overall look of a contemporary modern home. Homemakers today have diverted their focus from cost to design. In addition, consumers today are more open towards experimenting with bright and dark colours while choosing interior hardware, also  matte chrome plating hardware are becoming popular due to its longevity facet. With ethnic being an evergreen motif used at homes, antique finish hardware in copper, nickel and bronze has witnessed many takers in south India.

It is important to go into the basics
It is important to know that architectural hardware fittings go through a lot of wear and tear through their lifetime. Considering the average lifecycle of interior hardware is 50,000 cycles it is imperative that your interior hardware must perform efficiently during this period and also beyond.  However bargaining with the quality of the hardware is unwise as by doing so one bargains not just on the cost but also functionality and durability.  The science behind it is obvious as the inferior grade architectural hardware corrode over period of time especially when exposed to moisture. Experts recommend using the corrosion-resistant stainless steel hardware of grade 304 (SS 304) especially in bathrooms and kitchens where the hardware is in constant contact with moisture. There is a high demand for these products in Mumbai and Chennai markets as the region is more humid.
The next best option is SS 304 brass which is highly durable and ethnic looking. In addition the brass fittings more wear and tear leads to enhancement of the ornate look. For those with a slightly gentle taste, sinc alloy is an ideal option. Both these materials are widely popular in India and is an efficient alternative to SS 304 because it both durable and economical.

Hinges an important yet overlooked hardware
Main door is the most important tool for overall safety yet is neglected the most. Locks and hinges are often not considered important even though both are crucial for proper functionality. A strong main door not ensures security and peace of mind, however a common mistake is to overlook the quality of the hinges that hold these heavy doors. As a result, it’s not very uncommon to see doors getting jammed during monsoon. It is important that a corrosion resistant and powerful SS 304 hinge is used to hold the main door.
When it comes to hinges, installing three hinges per door for internal doors is ideal. However, front door should ideally be supported with five thick and superior grade stainless steel hinges so that they hold the door firmly to the frame. In addition one must be very careful while choosing the lock for the main door. While substandard products may be easy on pocket but holds great danger as the products start malfunctioning in less than three to four years. Rim locks or Mortise locks are must haves for the main door as it ensure overall safety.

Steady on style creates the impact
While one may think that selecting hardware may clash with theme of the interior or create ambiguity in the design, choosing smaller tweaks in hardware for sober look is the solution. If one chooses to incorporate modern, minimalistic or bohemian look it is idyllic to choose sober finishes in architectural hardware and fixtures that leaves scope for home owners to play around with designing for interiors.
One can change theme of interiors such as modern, minimalistic or bohemian by incorporating subtle finishes in architectural hardware plus the overall look is also heightened. Irrespective of your style preference, keep the hardware consistent with the rest of the styling.

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