Choosing the Right Timber Furniture for Timber Floors

Timber furniture on timber floors

It’s important to consider how your furniture will pair with your flooring to create a home decor you love. Timber floors add warmth, texture, and character to any living space, and it’s crucial to choose furniture that enhances the natural beauty of the timber. Many people wonder if pairing timber floors with timber furniture is a good idea.

In this article, we’ll share tips on how to match timber furniture with timber floors the right way, to create a cohesive and stylish look. Whether you’re renovating your existing home or designing a new one, we’ve got you covered.

wood furniture on wood floors

Understanding Undertone and Mass Tone

Timber can vary greatly in tone and hue depending on the species, age, finish, and cut. When it comes to finding furniture that matches your wood floor, or vice versa, a great place to start is looking at the undertone and mass tone of the timber. To achieve the perfect interior ambience, it is crucial to understand the undertone of your timber flooring and select the most suitable colours that will complement it.

Timber colour comprises two elements: the mass tone and the undertone. The mass tone is what is most apparent at first glance, the dominant hue. The undertone, however, is more subtle and becomes apparent upon closer inspection. Ensuring the undertones of your timbers align is crucial for achieving a harmonious aesthetic in your home.

Timber undertones can be warm, cool or neutral in appearance. Warm tones in timber tend to appear red, orange or yellow. Timber that takes on a grey, blue or white tone is said to have cool undertones. Neutral undertones give timber a beige look, without any distinct hue.

timber flooring tones

When it comes to pairing different timbers together, matching those with the same undertone is key. Establishing the undertones in your wood flooring helps you find perfect colour matches for your interior. The concept involves utilising contrasting timber pieces that harmonise with each other instead of appearing completely mismatched.

Use the undertone of your timber flooring to create the basis for your room decor. By sticking with the same tones, you can ensure that even if your timber flooring and timber furniture don’t perfectly match or provide a dramatic contrast, they will still harmonise well together. This approach allows for cohesion and visual appeal in your design. For example, if you have warm-toned floors like oak or pine, choose complementary warm-toned wooden furniture.

Keep in mind that matching undertones can still provide a great deal of variety in a room’s decor. Choosing a mix of different colours and shades will keep your room vibrant and interesting. For instance, light-coloured floors with red undertones will still match deep, dark wood furniture with the same red tones.

matching grain

Considering the Colour Wheel

The colour wheel is a useful tool for creating harmonious colour combinations. Once you’ve determined the underlying hue, apply the principles of the colour wheel to select colours that complement your wood floors.

The colour wheel is a circular chart that visually represents the relationships between different colours. The colour wheel can be divided into warm (reds, oranges, yellows) and cool colours (blues, greens, purples). Analogous colours are those that are located next to each other on the wheel. They usually match well and create serene and comfortable designs. Complementary colours, on the other hand, are pairs of colours that are directly opposite each other on the colour wheel, such as blue and orange. Complementary colours add interest and vibrancy to a space. By understanding these relationships and principles, you can use the colour wheel to create harmonious colour combinations in your interior design.

the colour wheel

While any timber furniture should match the undertone of your floor, other pieces can be used to balance out your overall warm, cool or neutral room. For example, shades of blue can complement timber elements with yellow or orange tones, creating a balanced and visually appealing combination.

If your timber flooring is neutral in tone, feel free to layer furniture and accents in your palette of choice. What’s important is having a colour palette and sticking to it.

Without buying into the argument of whether white is or is not a colour, white can be a powerful antidote to too much timber in a room. White can be utilised in this setting to break up the wood tones and give the eyes a rest. Choosing white for more permanent features such as a wall, gives you the flexibility to change up your room decor when the mood strikes. Always consider the undertones of your flooring when choosing a shade of white paint as anyone who has been into a hardware store knows that there are lots of whites on offer.

White paint

Utilising Texture and Sheen

Matching the texture and sheen of your timber furniture with the texture and sheen of your timber floors is also important. A high-gloss varnish will have a vastly different appearance to raw timbers. To achieve a cohesive look, it is recommended to choose either a matte, glossy, or raw sheen in both your flooring and wooden furniture. While mixing finishes can be done, avoid making the contrast too noticeable. A matte finish on both furniture and floors will create a more subdued, organic look, while a high gloss finish on both will create a more glamorous look.

Timber sheen levels

To achieve a more eclectic aesthetic, consider blending various finishes, ensuring that the differences are distinct enough to become a unique feature. Some modern design purposefully blends the rough and rustic with the stained and polished for a collected-over-time look.

Achieve a harmonious aesthetic by incorporating a diverse range of materials in your furniture and accessories. Timber floors effortlessly complement an array of textures, such as fabrics, metal, painted surfaces, and more.

When opting for timber flooring and timber furniture, balance the visual weight and firmness of wood with softer fabrics. To contrast the hard surface, consider plush rugs, cushions or throws to add softness and incorporate airy textiles in the form of curtains or cotton sheets.

Timber and softer textures

Softening Timber Floors with Rugs

Layering area rugs on top of timber floors can help define spaces and increase the comfort and warmth factor of the room. It’s also the secret to breaking up that wood-on-wood look that can be caused by timber furniture on timber floors.

The collision of timber furniture on timber floors can highlight any differences between the two. Therefore, consider a buffer between your wooden floor and a wooden furniture piece. A rug or mat will create a visual separator to divide the two kinds of wood and help your eyes appreciate the beauty of both separately.

Rug on timber floor

Creating Contrast

Contrast is important in design, as it adds depth and interest to a space. Once you have the timber flooring you want, it might seem easy to try to match the wood perfectly when picking your furniture. However, when all the timber in the room is perfectly matched, it can create a sense of flatness and dullness in the space. Contrast can be created by pairing furniture of the opposite shade on your timber floor. For instance, if you have a dark timber floor, you can lift the space by using cream, or light-coloured timber furniture to create contrast. Alternatively, if you have a lighter timber floor, adding dark or bold-coloured furniture will add character and dimension.

contrasting timber colours

If your timber furniture does match your timber flooring in colour, undertone, shade and finish, create balance in the room by distributing the wooden furniture throughout the room. Balancing the wooden pieces will give the space a feeling of balance and harmony. If the timber furniture is placed together, for instance, a dining table and chairs, buffer the wood with different coloured and textured materials such as velvet chair cushions or a white linen table runner.

balancing matching timbers

Following Grain Direction

All wood flooring will contain a grain, how defined and how uniform the grain is will largely depend upon the species and grade of the timber. The grain of flooring may seem subtle, but it will have an impact on defining the mood of the room.

Wood grain refers to the alignment, texture, and appearance of timber fibres. The direction of the grain is the orientation of the fibres in a particular piece of timber. The grain direction of your timber flooring and furniture pieces is determined by their manufacturing and placement.

timber grain direction

All the grain in your timber flooring will run in the same direction throughout the room, with the obvious exception of parquetry patterns. Knowing your flooring grain direction is an important factor when looking for accompanying timber furniture. Keeping your grain direction coherent across your flooring and furniture will give the space an elongated and more spacious appearance.

Contrasting your grain directions on the other hand, such as positioning your dining table in a way that is perpendicular to your flooring, will create a different visual effect. Employing various grain directions is an effective method to delineate distinct zones and functions within a space.

contrasting grains

Protecting Your Timber Floors

Take care of your timber floors and furniture to ensure that they look as great as they did when you got them. Regular light cleaning will prevent dirt and dust from scratching the surface.

You can purchase felt pads to put underneath the feet of your furniture to prevent any damage, especially for items that are moved regularly such as chairs. Felt is a top choice for placing under furniture when you have timber floors, due to its protective and gentle nature, ensuring the preservation of your floors.

furniture for timber floors

Choosing timber furniture for timber floors is all about marrying the right colours, textures, and styles. The tips we’ve shared in this article will help you take on this challenge with ease. The most important thing is that you buy furniture that you love, and that reflects your personal style. At the end of the day, it’s all about creating a living space that makes you feel comfortable, happy, and at home.

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