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Coloured Glass Sliding Wardrobe Doors; a passing trend or a technical innovation that’s here to stay?

Posted on 13th July 2011

Here at Sliding Wardrobe World we’ve been designing, manufacturing and selling coloured glass sliding wardrobe doors since the material first appeared on the market in Europe over 15 years ago.  At first the prices were prohibitive due to low volume, bespoke production, and the look was considered too ahead of its time for much of the UK market that was still geared around traditional decor, but over recent years it’s become a core part of the Sliding Wardrobe World range, and for the past few years sales have grown in line with the trend towards modern interior design.

Gloss surfaces in the kitchen, bedroom and bathroom industries have come into and gone out of fashion over the years, but this was mainly due to the practicalities of cleaning, and the longevity and robustness of the gloss finishes.  High gloss lacquered woods and MDF doors used in Kitchens are very expensive to manufacture, the quality levels can vary, and over time the surface can scratch and look dated.  Lower cost PVC films, and pressure laminates are subject to a phenomenon called orange peel, where imperfections in the glue distribution show through the thin film, and they also scratch and lose their gloss appearance over time, which is why customers soon go off them, and the trend moves away again.

The lacquered glass used in our glass sliding wardrobe doors is a completely different material and process to all of the above.  A sheet of high quality glass is lacquered on the reverse side.  In the early days, this was done by hand; often using spray lacquering equipment, but now it’s done on a curtain coating line, the same as used in a mirror silvering line.  When looking through the glass, you see an absolutely perfectly flat coloured gloss surface; the glass acts as a protective barrier, and gives the perfect shiny finish to a coloured gloss surface.  The painted glass surface is then lacquered again with a protective coating, which, once dry, is laminated with a safety laminate, to ensure the glass passes the BS6206 and EN12600 safety glass tests.  The net result is the most perfect of high gloss coloured surfaces, and the only negative for the furniture industry as a whole is that it is made of glass and subsequently has sharp edges, and requires specialist handling.  For glass sliding wardrobe door producers such as ourselves, this is not a problem at all, as the industry and our business has been built  around framing sheets of mirror, so manufacturing and distributing coloured glass sliding wardrobe doors is a perfect fit.

So to answer the question, we think that this is not a passing trend, or another resurgence of gloss finishes that will again pass.  This time the perfect material is available that will last the tests of time, as it’s a surface that can be easily cleaned, will not scratch like other gloss surfaces, and provides a superior perfect gloss finish at a fraction of the price of traditional lacquering techniques.

See our range of gloss glass sliding wardrobe doors in white, pure white, black, cappuccino, cream, red, green, purple and anthracite, available in our Minima, Shaker, Gliss and Maxima ranges.