We've researched the most popular design tips and guidelines around matching tones and materials and summarized them in this article. Keep reading to learn more about matching furniture in your dining room and find some practical tips.
Disclosure: We may get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.
Create A Color Palette In The Dining Room
You should start your matching process by picking a dominant or primary tone. From here, you can select pieces that are a few steps in either a lighter or darker tone. Generally, you select your primary tone based on the centerpiece of the room, or the largest piece of furniture.
If you have a black dining table, for example, you can keep a cool tone palette by accenting it with ash gray, gray-blues, and earthen stone colors. On the other hand, if you have a cherry red dining table, you can use warm accent pieces with oranges, and yellow woods.
It's important that all of the furniture and finishes in any room do not blend in together. If the floor and furniture are all similar materials and colors, the room can appear washed out and uninviting. Even very traditional dining rooms are punctuated with basic contrast to clearly distinguish the components.
The dining table should be different from the floors in at least either color or type of wood. Most designers would actually make the table contrast with the floor to bring the biggest attention in the room to the table.
Can You Mix Dark And Light Furniture?
You can mix dark and light furniture in a room as long as it fits the overall color scheme. It is also helpful to add bridging colors that connect the two. If you have a black table and white chairs, for example, then some middle colors, like grays, that would work well for accents like chairs.
You generally want to soften the transition so that very contrasted pieces don't grab all the attention - unless you intended to do that. A properly picked out dining set can help to keep lighter and darker colors in harmony.
Should All Your Furniture Match?
More traditional designs usually include full matching dining and living room sets. It was more common to try and match everything in the past. Most modern designers now like to combine different colors, materials, and styles to tell a story for the space.
For example, you can have a very regal and ornate dining room buffet paired with a more toned down table and chairs. The buffet would become a centerpiece and a point of conversation in the room. It would also show that you have an appreciation for traditional dining room etiquette while also appreciating conventional modern design as well.
A variety of styles can also show your journey of acquiring new pieces over time and from unique places. If you're deciding whether to match your dining room furniture to another room like your living room, you can consult our article here to help you decide.
Does The Dining Table Have To Match The Buffet?
Traditionally, the dining table, chairs, china closet, and buffet are all of the same set. These dining room sets were often sold together so that people could buy a full package made of coordinated pieces for their dining room. While this is still a viable way to decorate your dining room, most modern designers appreciate the ability to pick and choose what goes into their rooms.
It would be a nice nod to traditional styling to keep at least two or three pieces in a dining room matching. The dining table and buffet are often used in conjunction, so it's intuitive to make those the matching elements. Want to paint your dining table to better complete your dining room aesthetic? We show you just How To Paint A Dining Room Table in this article.
Can You Mix Wood And Non-Wood Furniture?
Yes, many designers like mixing wood and non-wood pieces to create contrast or fit into themes. The industrial theme is often kept by mixing metal or brick and wood. A dark metal bookshelf alongside a dark walnut bench would be an example of a modern industrial farm style.
Another common mix is a wooden dining table with metal or upholstered chairs. Metals are often seen as more rigid and cold, so metal elements of the dining room should be softened by being placed with or next to warmer wood tones.
As with the other matching tips, it is still just as important to maintain a theme across all elements. If you are looking for some ideas on what to add to your dining room to make it feel more complete, be sure to read What Furniture Should Be In A Dining Room? [5 Must-Have Items]
How Do You Mix Old And New Interior Design?
The best way to mix old and new interior designs is to maintain some common threads throughout the room. In a dining room, you can use a natural wood theme to combine both a modern bench-style wood dining table with a classic wood buffet of the same wood tones.
You can combine a tall ornate china cabinet in black with more modern black dining chairs to create contrast but maintain color harmony. You can also try to incorporate some in-between pieces of furniture that bridge the gap from your oldest to newest style. Some common threads you can use to unite old and new designs are color, materials, size, theme, and usage.
A Balancing Act
Creating a harmonious balance of colors and materials in any room can be a challenge. It can be even more important in a dining room that has several pieces of furniture for different uses that have to come together. As we've shown, it is possible to mix old and new, wood and non-wood materials, and many contrasting elements.
It's important to establish common color palettes and themes when mixing and matching furniture in a room. Fundamentally, a dining table shouldn't perfectly match the floor because the centerpiece of the room should stand out, not blend in!