We’ve been in the driveway gate business since 2012, and I’ve noticed some new trends in gate designs.  Modern designs are more much more substantial.  The use of larger profiles creates more dimension and sets them apart from the gates of the past.

 

You might be thinking that a discussion of gate trends is frivolous because the function of a gate is to block a hole in your fence. If so, this article is not for you.

 

I understand that the most basic and universal reason to have a gate hasn’t change.  A gate is simply an added level of security.  It exists to communicate “PRIVATE PROPERTY” and “KEEP OUT” to potential trespassers.

 

While security is the first and foremost reason for a gate, a close second is making a statement.  You want … no, you need a driveway gate that sets your property apart from your neighbors’. Here are a few reasons why:

  • A gate that stands out from the rest is less confusing for your guests to find.
  • You’ve worked hard to create a beautiful property. Your gate should be complementary.
  • There is a neighborhood competition. Even if no one said so.

 

We specialize in designing and building gates that make a statement for homes and ranches.  If you are looking to add or upgrade your gate entrance, this article is for you.  I’d love your comments, ideas and feedback at the end if I’ve left out any questions you have.

 

 

Trend #1: High Quality Premium Gates

As more people move out of the city and into the country, a high-quality driveway gate is becoming the standard rather than a luxury.  Having a stock farm gate that your wife has to get out of the car and drag to open just won’t do for long.

 

We liken it to having luxury vehicles.  You may have started your driving career in a standard vehicle, but as you progress you typically move up in your choice of vehicles.  And, you are likely moving to the country or getting your second home in the country because you’ve put in your dues at your desk job in the city.  Now, you’re ready to enjoy some of the fruits of your labor with a piece of property in the country.

 

We are getting loads of calls to replace make-do, poorly constructed gates on new property purchases.  The pandemic of 2020 seemed to add fuel to this trend.

 

As you look for a high-quality, premium gate, you will want to consider:

  • High-quality materials – wood, steel, aluminum, paint, etc.
  • Craftsmanship – attention and finesse to the smallest details.
  • Innovative – use of newer technologies in construction.

driveway iron gate details3faux-painted rubbed bronze details on aluminum gatematte black bracket detail with rivetsmatte black gate

If you are interested in a little more history in the transition from the original ranch gates to now, you could read this article.

 

Trend #2: Modern & Contemporary Styles

 

Home building and renovation shows, Instagram, Pinterest, Google, etc. are bringing more modern and contemporary styles to farms and ranches.  These styles are not overly ornate.  Many are refreshingly new shapes with simple, yet elegant profiles.  Here are some examples:

 

Modern Ranch Gate Designs

These are one-of-a-kind unique designs. The unique metal profiles add dimension and character.

colorado custom aluminum ranch gate

rustic ranch gate

You may be wondering if you should have an arched driveway gate, and if so what kind of arch. Check out this article for a little help with that.

 

Farmhouse-style Gate Designs

These gates have thick frames made of aluminum with simple lines. They are a modern take of some old-world, farmhouse gate designs.

custom farmhouse style aluminum black gates

custom aluminum gate decorated for fall

faux-painted weathered wood aluminum gate

 

Simple and Sleek Contemporary Designs

These designs may be simple, but they uniquely complement the homes they protect.

modern farmhouse slide gate

contemporary style aluminum lake house gates

modern-french matte-black driveway gates

 
Braided Gate Designs

We get lots of calls for our signature “braided” gates.  To the untrained eye, these are relatively “simple” designs. However, every piece is hand-forged and then puzzled together to create the dimensional braid.

braided ranch gate

braided iron gate

braided iron driveway gate

braiding

The idea for these came from my husband’s love for rawhide braiding and “cowboy gear”.  At one time in his life he built saddles and braided quirks and head stalls, etc. He longed to bring those design patterns to life in metal.

 

Trend #3: Aluminum for More Substance

 

Most everyone I talk to about gate designs say want their gate to be very SUBSTANTIAL looking.  Fear and distrust is higher than it used to be.  Therefore, the more intimidating a gate looks, the better.

 

For a very long time, steel gates ruled.  But, as our clients were demanding bigger and thicker looking gates, the weight of steel became a big issue. Installation was part of the problem, but the quality and longevity of the automation equipment needed was getting out of hand.

 

The answer has been aluminum.  I discuss the difference in more detail in this article on the topic.

 

Trend #4: Low Maintenance Gates

The low-maintenance trend in gates is very similar to #1 – High Quality Premium Gates, which makes them inherently lower maintenance.  So much of what we buy these days is only built to last for a couple of years.  I’m so tired of every car I buy working fine until right after the warranty expires!

 

I got off topic.  For a low-maintenance gate, you want an excellent foundation/posts and high quality hardware (hinges or slide-gate mechanisms).

 

For hinges, we use, love and sell BadAss hinges. They are made to handle substantial weight, and with the style we use, there is no greasing, no maintenance EVER!

Original BadAss Hinge

This is the original and it is our favorite!

 

If you want, or require, a sliding gate, we typically will recommend a cantilever gate system to avoid dealing with the maintenance of a track.  Our go-to for this system lately has been this Comunello sliding gate hardware because it minimizes visibility of the hardware and it is low maintenance.

 

Also, aluminum is lower maintenance than steel or wood in many cases. Unless you are going for a rust patina gate, aluminum is a much better idea.  No matter what you do (paint or powder coat) you are going to eventually see rust runs on steel gates.  Those really ruin the art!  With aluminum, that is not an issue.

 

Aluminum is also a much lower-maintenance alternative to wood.  Because so many of you LOVE the look of a wood gate to the entrance of your big new ranch or farm, my husband mastered the art of faux-wood-grain painting gates. He will distress the aluminum and hide his welds to add to the illusion.

 

These are some examples of aluminum gates painted to look like wood.

faux wood painted aluminum swing gate

faux-painted weathered wood aluminum gate

hidden welds to faux-wood paint

This is a picture of a finished gate. The welds have been hidden so it will look more like wood when it is painted.

 

Trend #5: Exceptions to Standard Colors

While we still build a lot of black gates, I’ve seen a trend in the experimentation with the color of your gate so that it complements the buildings or other structures around it. I wrote an article on the psychology of color and how it might relate to your gate. Let me know what you think about that.

 

Here are some non-black gate ideas:

aluminum rockin a ranch gate

The wood and red trim match the ranch house behind this gate.

 

aluminum farmhouse style driveway gate

Farm-house style in gray to complement the fence and house trim.

 

 

legacy iron gate

Because this made sense for this client!

 

CONCLUSION

Did I leave out a trend you’ve noticed? If so, comment below. Let’s discuss it!

 

If you are ready for the next step in exploring driveway gate designs, download our checklist to start the process of designing and building your gate. Or, give us a call.

 

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