Photo: Aesh Design
Modern and Sleek
Frustrated at the kind of work he was getting at a large architectural firm, David Grisham, co-owner of Nashville-based architecture firm and design lab Aesh Design, came up with this modern mailbox. “I saw it as a way to bring high-end design to an everyday market,” he says. The mailboxes are handmade by local fabricators and woodworkers and include a powder-coated aluminum base. Mr. Grisham’s favorite sale was to the owners of the Louis Kahn-designed Esherick House in Pennsylvania, “When I was in architecture school,” says Grisham, “that was the first house I studied.”
Price: $375 plus shipping. Wall-mounted $275. Optional upgrades of stainless steel base, larger size and door lock.
Photo: Oakland Living
Large and Imposing
If you’re looking for a mailbox with to-the-manor-born size and detailing, Oakland Living’s Kensington mail vault might be for you. Made of antique bronze-finished, rust-free cast aluminum, its 27” x 12.5” x 11.5” mail drawer size is large enough that “you can take a two-week vacation” and not have to worry about mail overflow, says Greg Smith, a manager at Oakland Living. To meet U.S. Postal Service regulations for curbside placement, a concrete or wooden foundation is required. Often customers like to build a brick pedestal or even brick housing for that “Georgian high-end royalty-type format,” Mr. Smith adds.
Price: Varies according to retailer, approximately $650. 40” x 17” x 17,” 62 pounds.
Photo: Kent Samuelson
Austin, Texas-based Lightcrafters offers four different mailboxes and “is always customizing” them, says owner Kent Samuelson, often matching them to homeowners’ outdoor lighting fixtures. This punched and burned dark antique copper and stainless steel “Squiggle” mailbox has a hinged lid and can be customized for size, vertical orientation, flat instead of pitched roof or for a post column instead of wall mounted, says Mr. Samuelson, who got into the craft lighting and mailbox business after taking a welding class for fun.
Price: $255 for 16” x 10” x 4” model.
Photo: John Xóchihua
Built to Last
Aztec Artistic Productions’ stainless steel mailbox was born when owner John Xóchihua wanted a mailbox to set out in front of his own midcentury modern Archibald Quincy Jones home in Portland, Ore. Mr. Xóchihua uses a programmed, computer-controlled laser cutter and a hand-held grinder to create a patterned effect. The mailbox is ideal for coastal locations, says Mr. Xóchihua, since it is weather-tight and impermeable to salt air. It is also designed to be mounted on a 4-inch concrete base just larger than its own footprint, so if it is hit by a car it will tip over and resist denting and destruction.
Price: $1,150 plus shipping. 12” x 18.5” x 40”, key lock. Different finishes upon request.
Photo: Chris Gonzalez
Historic Home Charm
During the depths of the 2008 recession, Tom Richard of Old California Lantern came up with the idea of adding mailboxes to coordinate with the company’s light fixtures. In 2012, America’s Finest Mailbox was spun off and today offers 60 different mailboxes designed by Mr. Richard, including this rustic “English Ivy” model. His primary customers are “owners of historic homes in older neighborhoods where the mailman still comes to the front porch,” he says. The patina effect on the solid brass is achieved with a sea sponge application of several chemicals.
Price: Currently on sale for $240, including choice of finish and glass. Optional lock $100, magazine rack $22.