When choosing furniture or styling a room it’s so important to balance the elements and create contrasts – matchy matchy everything is a no go! If you want a room that speaks volumes, catches your eye and stays interesting then you need to mix and match your pieces. A common area that people worry about is how to mix wood finishes, it can feel like a bit of a grey area and trust me opting for everything in pine is not the answer. To help you out I’ve compiled all my fail safe tips on mixing woods and popped them in a blog post, it goes hand in hand with what i’m about to talk about today so definitely worth having a read. So the second thing I think people are unsure about when it comes to mixing finishes is metals. It’s likely that you might already have a metallic preference, as safe as it may feel sticking with this one finish throughout the whole of your house, you’re missing out on so much potential to make your space stand out!
As I touched on before, a room with furniture and accessories of similar properties will quickly become really boring. Your eye will read the room too fast with nothing standing out or adding personality. Metal items are a great way to include points of interest to your space without having to introduce another pattern or colour. Also I find that your room will end up feeling much more eclectic and considered. As a concept I know that mixing metals can seem pretty confusing mainly because there actually are some do’s and don’t’s – so keep reading as we get into the details of how to do it right!
I think the key rule to stick by (this also applies to mixing wood finishes) is to allow one metallic finish to be dominant in the room with one or two others as accents. Try to avoid using similar quantities of each metal as it will feel like they’re competing for impact and instead the space will feel confused and overwhelming. This way the dominant metal can be complemented by the other finishes and they will work harmoniously to create contrast within your room. Cohesion in your design also really relies on the spacing of your different items. Make sure the different metals are intertwined around the space, don’t keep one particular finish in one corner and another in a separate part of the room. Instead by creating an even balance throughout the space the objects will all adhere to a sense of flow and will each feel purposeful.
On a similar note try not to cluster the different finishes together, mixing metals does work and they will compliment each other however place them too close together and there is a chance they might clash. Allowing for space is also just a great general rule to follow with styling to avoid a cluttered and busy look. It’s also important not to get too carried away, you might end up feeling so super confident to mix metals that they become virtually the only finish in your room. This won’t look great! Consider the other finishes in the room, mixing in other materials such as wood, marble and concrete (to name a few) will allow for more contrast and will enhance your space. Also don’t feel that you are restricted by the texture of the metal, similarly to the finish it is really effective to experiment with matte, polished or hammered finishes to add depth and texture.
My final rule to follow would be to avoid metals that look too similar, for example nickel and chrome. The problem with this combination is that it can look like you’ve just accidentally mixed the metals. It will look much more effective if there is a real stark contrast between the colours of the metal and it will feel more intentionally styled.
I really hope that this insight into mixing metals will leave you with the confidence to try it in your own home. And if you’re not feeling brave enough yet to take the plunge with big pieces you can simply opt for experimenting with different metal photo frames or other smaller accents around the room. I absolutely love looking for styling pieces, as I’ve mentioned lots of times before the styling is really the magic touch that transforms a room. If you want more styling tips we have a blog post with our top 10 things you must have in your home that is definitely worth a read! Also if you’re struggling with inspiration for accessories then you need to head over to Zara home. If you love their clothes then you’ll love their homeware even more! This should probably come with a bit of a warning though as serious bank balance damage can be done once you’ve discovered their stuff! If you have any other questions or any experiences of your own with mixing metals then as always please do leave a comment below.