Sherle Wagner Faucets
Review & Rating
300 East 62nd St.
New York, New York 10060
This Company In Brief
Founded in 1945, the company is an interior designer's paradise that sells bath fixtures, faucets and bath accessories; lighting, furniture, textiles, linens, wall coverings and cabinet and door hardware, all designed to complement each other for a completely consistent interior ensemble.
Sherle Wagner faucets are designed, engineered, assembled, decorated, quality controlled and given their fabulous finishes in the U.S. at the company's Fall River, Massachusetts plant. Some of the casting and machining is done in-house, but most of the components that go into the faucets are imported — mostly from Seagull Kitchen & Bath, an manufacturer in China that also supplies components and sometimes whole finished faucets to to The decorative hardware components are designed by Sherle Wagner and made to its exacting specifications. Facets are made to order, so lead times can be long.
These faucets are unblushingly luxurious and priced to match.
Typically, components are priced separately, so after adding the body, handles and trim of choice, the price can easily reach several thousand dollars.
There is a reason the company's show rooms are located in places where the richest 1% of Americans live. It's not absolutely required that you own six Rolls Royces to buy a Sherle Wagner faucet, but it does not hurt at all.
The faucets are in four collections: Contemporary, Classic, Traditional and Ornate. The differences among Contemporary, Traditional and Classic collections are not readily apparent. For the most part any faucet in any one of these collection could fit into the other two. Faucets in the Contemporary collection (formerly the Architectural collection) are a little more austere and modern than the other two.
The Ornate collection, on the other hand, is very different with enough stylized griffins, Swans, sea monsters and Dragons with embellishments of interwoven vines and acanthus leaves to warm the cockles of even Donald Trump's Baroque heart.
Some faucets are all metal, some metal with porcelain accents, and some include crystals and semi-precious stone accents as inlays.
The factory in Fall River employs as many artists and artisans as machinists. Intricate hand decoration is a signature feature of many of the company's sanitary-ware products. The faucet finishes are plated, typically in gold. The newer PVD finishes are not offered. But, the polishing that goes into many of its intricately detailed faucets is an art unto itself, and something to see. No photograph could possibly do justice to the deep, lustrous finishes.
One of our designers owns one, and it cost more than his pickup. Of course, his beater of a truck is worth money only if the gas tank is full.
The Sherle Wagner website is long on style, short on useful information. It purpose seems to be to introduce the company and point the reader to one of the downloadable catalogs.
The catalogs themselves are not particularly informative. They contain a black and white image of each faucet and some basic and rudimentary information about the faucet. No dimensioned drawings, no detail specification sheets, no exploded parts diagrams. Not much other than the image that is particularly useful.
The decision to depict Sherle Wagner's colorful faucets inlaid with vari-colored stones, porcelain and spectacular finishes of all sorts, in black and white makes one wonder if the wardens of the company are of sound mind. It would be difficult for even the finest colored digital image to do justice to the finishes and inlays, and there is no possibility that a black and white image can begin to capture the elan of the various collections.
The company does not offer a formal warranty on its products. A spokesperson for the company told us that Sherle Wagner will take care of any problem arising from the manufacture of a faucet, but declined to give us an example of the kind of problems it would take care of except to say that it probably would not offer to refinish a problematic finish.
We are continuing to research the company. If you have experience with Sherle Wagner faucets, good, bad or indifferent, we would like to hear about it, so please contact us or post a comment below.