HK Designs
Located in Pittsburgh, HK Designs is a manufacturer of well-designed metal products for interior and exterior architectural environments.

We design, manufacture and sell a variety of simple, machine made objects with a minimalist, geometric form. The pieces can be used as stand alone decorative works of art or integrated into custom applications and projects. Simplicity, combined with natural materials and high technology, are the trademarks of HK Designs.

Simple in form, practical in function, quality in workmanship. Products reflective of classic designs.

The Russel Wright Collection
The original spun metal designs (circa 1930-1940) of Russel Wright ® are being reissued by HK Designs under exclusive license with Russel Wright Studios. The decorative pieces are manufactured to the exact dimension, material, finish and process as the originals.

Russel Wright (1904-1976) was one of the most influential American designers of the 20th Century, a true pioneer of mid-century Modern design. Russel designed thousands of objects over his lifetime, which included home furnishings, serving accessories, light fixtures, textiles, appliances, interiors, buildings and landscapes, the most famous being his American Modern dinnerware.

His innovative designs were aimed at an easier and informal way of living. Russel, along with his wife Mary, invented lifestyle marketing and was the first designer of the 20th century to promote his own name on the products.

In the early 1930’s, Russel shifted the nation’s aesthetics towards modernism and revolutionized the way people lived. Inspired by a variety of diverse sources, he created a uniquely American style that was both elegant and informal. His early works in spun aluminum, incorporating new materials and technology, launched his career and crystallized his philosophy of “good design is for everyone”.

Today, his original works are highly prized by collectors and are a part of many museums permanent collections. Dragon Rock and Manitoga, Wright’s extraordinary home and surrounding landscape in Garrison NY, is a National Historic Landmark.

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Signature Marks
All products are stamped with the HK logo. The Russel Wright Collection is also stamped with the original Russel Wright signature. The HK mark denotes product as an authorized reissue.

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Metal Spinning
Metal spinning is one of the oldest techniques for forming metals into circular, hollow shapes. History records evidence that the early Egyptians were experienced with the craft. Over the centuries, the technique spread throughout Europe and made its way to America about 1840. Initially, metal spinning was used to produce fine gold, silver and pewter hollow ware and chalices.

In the early 1900’s, skilled artisans and companies began to experiment with more difficult metals, newer materials, heavier gauges and larger diameters. Russel Wright pioneered the use of spun aluminum in his new line of Stove-to-Tableware products in 1930. Today, spun metal parts are used in a variety of applications and products within the aerospace, architectural, electric power, food service and healthcare industries.

Metal spinning is the method by which a flat metal sheet becomes a three-dimensional object. In its simplest form, the metal spinning process starts with round piece of material, often referred to as a blank, that is attached to a lathe and forced over the spinning tool or mandrel. Pressure is applied to the material via a roller that is worked over the material, stretching it, until it has assumed the shape of the desired object. The inside dimensions of the final piece will match the outside dimensions of the tooling.

As a manufacturing operation, metal spinning is still mostly an art form. Whether the operation is carried out manually, hydraulically, or through sophisticated CNC controls, the techniques involved have been developed through years of trial and error—all under the watchful eye of a highly skilled Master Spinner.

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Metal Finishes
Available standard and optional finishes are listed on each product page. We can provide custom finishes, coatings or polishing upon request.

Our standard metal finish is a natural fine grain satin with no clear coat or anodizing and is 100% environmentally friendly. The material will develop a natural patina that will continue to age over time. Environmental conditions, weather, moisture, handling and time are factors in the aging process. The natural pure beauty of the metal is allowed to reflect in each piece, offering an ever-changing visual display as it ages.

The aluminum products can receive an environmentally friendly transparent glaze finish in a variety of colors. Anodizing of aluminum is not recommended due to color variations within the piece, the inability to repair, and the environmentally unfriendly process.

The copper can be turned to an oxidized dark brown or verdigris (green) patina, accelerating the aging process. The appearance can be enhanced with the frequent application of oils and waxes. Solvent based clear lacquer coatings can be used for short-term protection but are not recommended, as tarnishing will eventually appear under the clear coat requiring extensive refinishing.

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Care & Maintenance
Following the design philosophy of Russel Wright, we have allowed the natural pure beauty of the metal to reflect in each piece, without the use of applied coatings. The original finish can be easily restored with proper care and maintenance.

"The aluminum has a 'scratch brush' finish, (finely engraved circular lines). This finish is easy to clean with steel wool, soap and water, and if the steel wool is rubbed following the direction of the scratch brush lines, the initial luster may be preserved indefinitely- and of course because the metal is solid, and neither plated nor enameled, there is nothing to peel or chip off."

Russel Wright

Aluminum is a soft material and very susceptible to scratches, dings and dents, care should be taken in handling. It may be cleaned with warm water and soap, drying thoroughly to prevent spotting. The material will develop a natural silver-gray patina in time. Luster may be restored with a Scotchbrite pad, rubbing gently in the same direction of the grain, and maintained with an automotive spray wax.

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Copper is a soft material and very susceptible to scratches, dings and dents, care should be taken in handling. The bright luster will turn to an oxidized dark brown and eventually age to a verdigris (green) patina. Moisture and frequent washing will accelerate the aging process. Luster may be restored with a Scotchbrite pad, rubbing gently in the same direction of the grain, or with a suitable copper cleaner. The aging process may be slowed with the frequent application of oils or waxes.

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Stainless Steel
Stainless steel is a hard material and is less susceptible to scratches, dings and dents. The finish is a natural fine grain satin and does not require any topcoat or polish to maintain its luster. It may be cleaned with warm water and soap or any commercial spray cleaner. Environmental contaminants may spot the surface and can be removed with a Scotchbrite pad, rubbing gently in the same direction of the grain.

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All pieces are warranted to be free of material defects, scratches or dents upon delivery from the factory. Care should be taken in handling these works of art as they are very susceptible to damage. Aluminum and copper will age in time and will develop a natural patina characteristic of the metal. The size and dimensions of pieces may vary slightly due to the spinning process.

Products can be refinished at the factory for a nominal charge. Please contact the factory for available services and shipping instructions.

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© 2008 HK Designs, LLC
All Rights Reserved