Radiators are no longer the functional wallflowers of the interior design world: they are style statements and works of art. Choosing a radiator style is down to personal preference, and the choice is vast. Vertical radiators look dramatic and modern when fitted into tight spaces in small living areas, while low horizontal radiators are ideal fitted below a window or in a bathroom.
The first cast iron radiator was invented by an American in the 1800s. He collaborated with a British heating expert to produce the heating innovation that we know today and the idea found its way to Europe in the 1840s, with foundries in London supplying the building trade and the British market.
Today, the cast iron radiator is used in period homes to conform to the aesthetic of the time and to retain the traditional feel of a building. However, cast-iron radiators, whether reclaimed or new, can make a dramatic statement of industrial chic in a loft flat or warehouse home.
Radiators Now Serve a Dual Function
The trend nowadays is to go for radiators that serve a dual purpose of style and function. Unusual radiators can be used to make a statement about the owner’s creative nature, and are often geometric or sculptural in design.
The lightweight material of aluminium has replaced the cast iron radiator of the Victorian period. Aluminium radiators have the benefit of copper pipes and fins that allow even heat dispersal through an increased surface area via conduction, such as those seen in Apollo aluminium radiators. They can double-up as towel warmers, mirrors, or even pieces of artwork.
New radiators with reflective panels can serve as a mirror, while flat panel radiators can have artworks cast onto their surface so that they serve a dual purpose of art and function.
What better way to create a cosy and welcoming feel in any bathroom in the middle of winter than to have your fluffy towels warmed before you get out the shower or bath.
Cast iron radiators add warmth and old-fashioned nostalgia to fit in with Edwardian, Georgian and Victorian homes, or to make a statement in modern homes where industrial elements are key and a certain grunge factor gives it that up-market style which appeals to all young professionals.