Guide to Rolling Ladder Hardware Finishes

May 22nd 2024

Our Putnam Rolling Ladder comes with a variety of choices of hardware finishes to create the look you want. Let’s learn more about why the right finish is important. The term “hardware” covers any visible or exposed fittings, like  hingea, door handles, cabinet pulls, and in our case, mounting tracks and wheels for your sliding ladder.

The Basics About Library Ladder Hardware Finishes

In a nutshell, a hardware finish is the final look of the surface of the product. The most common hardware finishes are black, satin, polished, and antique. 

Pro Design Tip: The first and most important question you need to answer about a hardware finish is Do you want the hardware to stand out or complement? “Stand out” hardware tends to be polished and bright. Complementary hardware tends to be matte, or an antiqued finish.

Options for Your Rolling Ladder Hardware Finish: A Closer Look

Now that you are familiar with the finish basics, let’s look at the defining characteristics of some of the most popular finishes for our library ladders.

Satin Finish

A satin finish describes a muted appearance that still has a bit of shine to it. You can’t see your reflection in a satin finish, but it still reflects a little light. Brushed satin reveals subtle “brush strokes” on the surface, which gives the finish an artisan appeal. Satin nickel, which you can choose for your Putnam Classic No. 1Meadow Lane, and Quiet Glide rolling ladder lines, offers a balance of warm and cool tones, which makes it a go-to choice.

Satin hardware finishes work well in these spaces:

  • Interiors that blend or mix décor styles
  • Contemporary
  • Scandinavian or Modern European

Oil-Rubbed Bronze Finish

Homeowners appreciate the vintage, antiqued look of oil-rubbed bronze. This finish appears dark with a warm bronze undertone. This finish is slightly shiny, as though it’s been treated with protective oil. You can find the oil-rubbed bronze hardware finish for our Putnam Classic No. 1 and Quiet Glide rolling ladder lines.

Oil-rubbed bronze finishes look great in these spaces:

  • Rustic
  • Contemporary
  • Vintage
  • Mixed décor styles
  • As a contrast color to bright, airy rooms

Polished Nickel Finish

Opposite of its satin cousin, polished nickel is shiny, smooth, and bright. Highly reflective, polished nickel is a “stand out” kind of hardware finish that looks clean and offers a warm undertones. (For cool undertones, see polished chrome.)

Polished nickel finishes look good in:

  • Glam spaces, like studios or applications with ultra-modern décor
  • Light and airy spaces
  • White rooms
  • Marble or stone sinks and baths
  • Contemporary designs

Chrome Finish

Chrome is a high-shine silver finish with cool undertones. Most people know it as the defining metal accent on muscle cars. Chrome is an excellent choice as a “stand out” hardware finish, and we offer it on our Classic No. 1 and Quiet Glide ladders. Polished chrome hardware is buffed until its surface looks reflective and bright.

Chrome finishes look great in these spaces:

  • As an accent to bold, vibrant colors
  • In industrial, upscale, or futuristic spaces
  • In rooms with plenty of natural light

Black Finish

Black finishes ruled the hardware game for years. As they say, black goes with everything, and it has the ability to elevate the décor around it with sophistication. While homeowners are branching out from matte black as the go-to hardware finish these days, black will always be a solid, universal choice for just about any space. Because of the appeal of black hardware, we offer all our rolling ladder lines with the option of hardware in a black finish. 

Black hardware finishes go well with:

  • Modern, contemporary, and minimalist interiors
  • Pattern tiles or light-colored cabinetry
  • White or neutral spaces
  • …pretty much anything

Polished Brass Finish

Also a high-shine, reflective finish, polished brass gives off a golden glow and adds a little vintage charm to any space. You can find polished brass hardware in our Meadow Lane and Classic No. 1 rolling ladder lines. Polished brass is a versatile choice since it balances a bright metal look with the classic warmth of traditional brass.

Polished brass hardware looks great with:

  • Contemporary, mid-century modern, and eclectic interiors
  • Rich wood tones
  • Darker spaces as a contrast detail
  • Patterned wallpaper, bold backsplashes, or multi-tonal interiors

Hammered Antique Brass Finish

Uniquely vintage in design, hammered antique brass looks like finely beaten metal. We offer this finish exclusively with our Quiet Glide rolling ladder. (We offer a smooth antiqued brass finish for our Classic No. 1). This finish looks almost pebbled, so it has a very interesting visual appeal because of this added texture. Hammered antique brass is a muted tone, but it does reflect a bit of light.

Hammered brass finishes are well suited for:

  • Rustic spaces
  • Craftsman style interiors
  • Any space that creates or preserves a sense of being around for a long time
  • Wood, stone, and nature-themed rooms

Choosing Your Rolling Ladder Hardware Finish with Putnam Rolling Ladders

Our special design configurator tool lets you see what each finish looks like with the rolling ladder you want. No guesswork here—you’ll know exactly what you’re getting and whether it will work with your existing decor. Browse our ladder collection to find the style for you, then head over to our configurator tool to mix and match hardware finishes with wood species. Have fun! If you need help or information, book a consultation with one of our ladder experts or send us a message