Decorative brass accessories for the home include more than incense burners, candle holders, and Arabic coffee pots. Brass has been used for many centuries in plenty of different ways for vases. We’re familiar with standard polished or clear-coated brass accent vases. There are millions of them in homes around the world.
There are also examples of brass containers that have been painted or laquered in colors that alter or cover the brass appearance of the pieces. I use three examples of these, today.
A couple of years ago, I picked up a couple of mottled grey painted metal vases that I thought were made of steel. I later examined them more carefully, and discovered they are made of brass. The “Made in India” stickers clinched my judgment. This type of vase is usually unsuitable for cut live flowers, so they generally contain artificial or dried arrangements. I wanted to create a contemporary look with dried elements for this. In this case, I warmed up the industrial grey with warmer earth tones.
A subtle rainbow of tinted clear-coat is one of the features of a heavy, modern brass vase from India that I appreciate. Right away, I envisioned a stark, formal treatment for this vase. I formed the modern plastic beads into the outline of a funnel. The first version utilized a yellow spider mum, but the look seemed a bit “off”. I replaced the mum with a vintage plastic orange stem. I’m glad I made the switch.
If you can enlarge these photos, be sure and do it with this third image. This is the finest brass vase in my collection. This hand-painted example was created in colonial era northern India. The Tibetan Buddhist influence is quite obvious in its style. Several red-dyed pods on stems add a contemporary, yet ethnic touch. The finished composition is quite dramatic.
Do you have a brass piece or two in your home? Regardless of whether it is humble or fancy, you can accent your decor with brass.