31 Aug

Unusual Sockets Special: Designer Sockets

How designer sockets can add a touch of class

Designer sockets post image by Innershadows Photography (via Shutterstock).

The common and garden white UK 3-pin socket. Typical of many homes and offices across the United Kingdom. Image by Innershadows Photography (via Shutterstock).

Everywhere you go from Penzance to Kirkwall, the bog-standard British three-pin socket is made of white plastic. Sometimes, aluminium with a bit of white plastic around the pins. In some homes, hotels, and offices, common and garden sockets eschew white for brass or chrome. The former offers a classic Victorian feel, in spite of the fact very few places had electricity. Back then, the National Grid was a mere fantasy.

Today, the humble 3-pin plug socket has a wealth of styles. Sockets are also available in pewter, stainless steel, copper, and granite. This isn’t half of the story, as you can also buy clear ones. Thin solid wood sockets are also available. Even coloured and paintable designs. How much choice is there now? It is nothing short of amazing. Why would you want a pewter socket when a bog standard white one works just as well?

USB sockets as well as 3-pin plugs

Even twenty-year old technology can play ball alongside the present 3-pin sockets, that have been with us for over fifty years. Some of today’s standard issue designs include USB ports. Which is great when you need to charge your phone or digital tablet. A good thing for the office.

Then you’ve got Retrotouch’s offerings, which combine old fashioned elegance with 21st century technology. Not only light switches and mains supply points, but also underfloor heating thermostats. Compare and contrast this with the Wylex System we covered in a previous blog post.

So, why would I need a clear light switch instead of a white one?

First and foremost, aesthetic value. Some homes or public buildings might be better with chrome or pewter switches and plug in points. As always, this is down to your taste in design.

Total Control and Distribution, 31 August 2017.

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