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The Latest Tapware Trends

The right tap, like the right piece of jewellery, can elevate and change the entire mood or feel of a design. And, like a signature necklace or pair of earrings, it has the potential to be the cornerstone of a space by influencing the way the rest of its elements come together. So, unsurprisingly, picking the tap that suits is paramount! Like everything, tap ware is subject to changing trends and industry innovation, which is why at Sussex, we look to a variety of design disciplines including architecture, fashion and interior design for inspiration and insight into what the next big thing might be. We’ve been keeping an eye on local and international trends to see what we might be able to expect from our tapware in 2020. Read on for 5 of the top trends we expect to see everywhere in the first year of the new decade!

Living Finishes

Brass is an extremely adaptable metal with diverse applications. If left untreated, it oxidises over time to reveal a beautifully worn patina. This is often referred to as a ‘living’ finish because it responds to points of human contact – the more you touch a certain part of the tap, the more it will reveal a patina. We’ve seen this trend pick up momentum over the last 18 months, and it shows no signs of slowing down. Living brass finishes can impart a ‘wabi-sabi’ or rustic, beachy effect onto a space, and they look particularly good when paired with other natural finishes like marble and timber. The darker the tap becomes, the better it looks against glossy white surrounds, too. It’s a timeless, refined and very stylish tap trend, and one of our current favourites.

Matte White

There is nothing more classically refined than an all-white bathroom, and matte white tapware takes that one step further. Having a seamless space, where all elements blend into one another, is an elegant trend that reflects fashion’s current obsession with tonal dressing and neutral colours. A matte white tap looks incredibly punchy against black or grey features, too, and that monochrome aesthetic works well in spaces that adopt a more minimal theme or mood. This is a trend that’s just as at home in the kitchen, too but with such a pared-back colour scheme, the architectural lines of a tap become important, so be

mindful ​about selecting the right shape for your space.

Brushed Nickel

This is one of our all-time most popular finishes for a reason: it always looks timeless while feeling contemporary and a little bit glamorous, without being over the top. It also works in almost any setting. While it never goes out of style, we see it as being a staple tap ware trend in 2020 because it works so well against terrazzo tiles, which will no doubt continue to be popular for the foreseeable future. The combination of the two is seamless, with brushed nickel being subdued enough not to overpower any textures or patterns its aligned with.


Sussex has observed a return, across the spectrum of interiors, to hand-crafted finishes. Textured tap ware is just another reflection of this bigger movement towards the artisanal and unique. At the industry-leading ISH tapware show in Germany this year, we saw a lot of texture, especially on handles. Finely serrated grooves and knurled surfaces were prominent, particularly on gunmetal grey or chrome tapware. Textured handles give a nice, tactile finish to the tap, and can also work to enhance a space by introducing an unexpected characteristic. When done well, textured finishes can have a crafted quality

that feels special and elevated, working well in a space that is clean and unfussy. ​ S​tay tuned for more in this space soon!

Contrasting Colours and Textures

The contrasting tones and textures of tiles, tapware and fixtures can really elevate a bathrooms’ overall look and feel. There are many ways to integrate this trend into your bathroom or kitchen – either by using a minimal tapware finish colour which contrasts the beautiful splashback  tiles.

The Norsu Kitchen. Tiles used- Stone Zigzag marble tiles in Carrara


bathroom tile ideasOr you could also experiment with finishes – for example, pairing a custom paint colour with a brushed finish. In the Norsu Home, Nat has selected Dulux’s Mornington Half tapware handles to contrast the Brushed Gold base. A luxe and refined decision which further picks up the Nood Co Basins and stunning Patagon Blush hexagon tiles from Perini Tiles.

Guest Blog by our good friends at Sussex Taps