Get the look... Urban Industrial.

Forget perfection, this design style puts it all out there.


An Urban Industrial kitchen is a hard-wearing functional space based on practical needs. Built to last, it’s not afraid to have its battle scars on display. The hard-earned ‘patina’ and obvious imperfections are what make this space perfect for everyday living. It’s a space you can really live in, entertain in and put through its paces, and it will only get better with age.

The look is characterised by exposed brickwork, stainless steel work surfaces, simple tiles and reclaimed wood floors. It takes the functional elements of a professional kitchen like steel work surfaces and appliances, oversized ventilation units, exposed shelving, and one of our hard-wearing fireclay sinks. 

Image Credit: Shoot Factory
A Shaws Butler 900 used in an urban industrial bathroom. Image Credit: Shoot Factory
Image Credit: Shoot Factory
Image Credit: Soho House Berlin
Image Credit: Soho House Berlin
Image Credit: Pinterest
Image Credit: Ein44
Image Credit: Ein44

Exposed brickwork.

This look is all about exposing the raw materials. Brick, concrete and wood are often left uncovered and untreated, creating a raw, tactile space. If you don’t have brick walls to expose you can use reclaimed real brick tiles to create the illusion of a solid wall.

Reclaimed tiles.

Original glazed tiles complement this look and the more weathered the better. Buy reclaimed originals - you might even find they’re made by Shaws (we manufactured glazed tiles for most of the 20th century) or authentic reproductions to cover large areas of wall rather than just as a splashback. Use plain designs like glazed brick or metro tiles for an authentic industrial feel.

Industrial strength equipment.

Buy equipment that is built to last and wouldn’t look out of place in a professional kitchen. Large stainless steel appliances, thick wooden shelves with cast iron brackets filled with heavy well-used pots and pans. Shaws sinks work perfectly with this style because they are built to last. Our sinks are an industrial design classic that have been used in working kitchens and industrial environments for over 125 years as a result of their durability, functionality and safety. It is also a real opportunity to add a touch of luxury without betraying the practicality of your industrial theme.

Reclaiming Wood.

Wood is a key signature of this style - in fact, it's everywhere. From the parqué flooring to the shelves made from scaffolding planks, the butchers block to the exposed beams on the ceiling. It should be reclaimed, original or unfinished, always chunky and always imperfect.

Lighting.

When it comes to lighting it can be as simple as a single exposed Edison filament bulb hanging from a single twisted cable or several oversized industrial pendant light fittings reclaimed from an old clock factory. What matters is the raw unpolished approach and the contrast of scale.

Concrete.

This industrial material is a well celebrated ingredient of this look. It can be polished to create smooth shiny floors and work surfaces that still feel rugged. It can be left raw on structural elements like beams and pillars for a really stripped back feel. It can be used on walls and impressed with planks for a interesting textured finish.

Showing off.

This look is not about being clutter-free living. It’s about showing off the inner workings of your kitchen. Fixtures like galvanised steel electrical conduit and extraction vents are all on show. Open fronted cupboards filled with Kilner Jars and earthenware crockery are a common feature, simple industrial taps with visible copper pipes are also popular.

Have you created an Urban Industrial kitchen with a Shaws sink? Or are you planning to? We would love to hear from you. Drop us a line, or share your creation with us on social media. 

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