A Guide to mixing and matching Wood tones

A mix of wood grains, patterns and tones can lend your decor a characterful spirit and a genuine sense of style. Yet, marrying various woods in a room can often prove to be a challenge. If you’ve been contemplating mixing and matching wood tones in your home, but have been apprehensive about how to get started, consider these tips your guiding light.

Choose similar undertones

Woods are like seasons,  some are warm and golden while others are crisp and cool. Opting for similar undertones across your pieces can help conjure a sense of cohesion within your room and keep it from looking lopsided. For example, if your room is dominated by warm wood tones like walnut, cherry and rosewood, consider choosing additional pieces in a similar warm palette. Likewise, if your wood scheme is biased towards cooler tones, match it with complementary cool wood grains. Warm undertones usually appear in red, orange or yellow shades, while cool undertones give off a greyish hue.


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Beige, a medium-warm colour temperature injected into this space is associated with a neutral undertone. Neutral colour temperatures work equally well with woods on both sides of the spectrum – warm or cool – as well as with other neutral finishes.

Designate a ruling tone

A sea of similar tones can dissolve into nothingness and be lost on the eye. Tackle the tedium by making one wood tone your room’s crowning glory and add complementary darker or lighter tones around it. If you’re unsure of how to decide this, go by your largest surface – the floor, the sofa frame or the centre table, perhaps. If all your wood finishes are of equal surface area, it makes sense to spread your dominant tone across two, three or even four ruling accents.


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Unify with a theme

Colour temperature, as discussed earlier, is an unfailing unifying tool for wood pieces. However, you should also be mindful of other important elements, such as design, shape and period. A mid-century modern decor scheme, for example, can gain character from wood pieces in a similar style. Similarly, a room dominated by sinewy furniture can profit from additional pieces with curvy cuts.


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Bring in colour with accents

Worried about disparate wood tones and grains drowning out your space? Buoy them with one or two central accent colours. Get throw pillows, lamps, rugs and tchotchkes in a single colour scheme to introduce a consistency that counterbalances the diversity of your wood.

Introduce non-wood finishes

If an abundance of wood is pulling your room down, break up the monotony with non-wood finishes.


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See how this Pune bedroom has aced the mix and match process with a patterned cream wallpaper that mutes the overdose of wood provided by the bed, wardrobe, floor and vintage desk. Textured veneers and laminates, metals, and paint are great for your surfaces and can serve as an antidote to an overly woody look.

Research by Ronbir B