Design Feature: How to Mix Metals

mixed metals shown in atlanta home staging project

Design Feature: How to Mix Metals

October 23, 2018 | Blogs

Fashion rules have long dictated that mixing metals such as gold and silver is forbidden. The interior design world had the same rule of thumb throughout the 1980s. Today, rules like these are now commonly broken in both the fashion world and home décor. Mixing metals adds a modern, elegant style in a home, as well as character and depth. At Design2Sell, we have found that mixing metals is the perfect strategy for adding visual interest to any room, and it’s an effortless way to make pieces in the home look as if they have been collected and curated for centuries.

The trick is to blend the metals in the room so that they are not too mismatched or overbearing. Whether it’s gold and silver, brushed stainless steel or hammered copper, there are a variety of metals to choose from when staging or decorating a home. Below are some of our tried-and-true tips and tricks when mixing metals that’ll help you have your home looking like it was professionally decorated in no time!

Select the Room

The first step is to determine which room you are staging or decorating. Certain metal types are used best for specific pieces. For example, aluminum and copper are best used for accent pieces and outdoor furniture, brass and stainless steel looks best on mirrors and light fixtures, and cast iron dominates for knobs and handles.

mixed metals in atlanta home staging project

Choose a Dominant Metal 

Once you’ve selected the room you’re going to decorate, it’s time to choose a dominant metal and an accent metal. For a dominant warm color, such as brass, copper or gold, which all offer a bold pop of color, add cool colored accents such as aluminum, stainless steel, or other silver metals. For a dominant cool color, add warm accents. Cast iron and other black metals are considered neutral metals and can be mixed with either a warm or cool metal.

Consider the Palette

Warm metals such as gold, brass and copper will pair well with warm hues like reds, yellows and browns. The same applies for cool metals like chrome and silver that look best with cool hues like blue, violet and green. A neutral palette, such as white or black, looks gorgeous with gold and brass accents that give the space a warm feel. Ensuring the color palette of the room coordinates with your metal choices will keep the different colors and textures from becoming too overwhelming.

mixing metals in Atlanta home staging project

Keep It Delicate and Subtle

Metals do not need to compete for attention in a room. A maximum of three metal finishes are enough to provide visual stimulation without being overwhelming. If you’re concerned about the mixed metals clashing, add small trinkets of the secondary metal color throughout the space to help add an indirect touch. Or, consider adding a natural neutralizer, like wood, iron, or a non-metallic finish. These elements offer a modern industrial touch, won’t clash with other metals, and they add a grounded element to your palette to make sure your space looks pulled together and effortless.

Mixing metals is a growing trend that we don’t expect to go anywhere as fashion and design continue to evolve and old rules become discarded. For more tips and trends in the home design world, visit us

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