How to Mix Metals

Mixing metals has become a favorite way to create a collected-over-time look in kitchens, bathrooms, living areas, and more. Varying metal finishes in a space can add depth and character that a matching metal look could lack.

You can change up metal finishes by mixing your hardware, furniture, lighting, and other fixtures. To help get you started, here are five quick tips on mixing metals in your home.

Tip 1: Pick a dominant finish

You might think that you need to distribute each metal you choose equally, but typically, it is best to choose one dominant metal and use the others as an accent. When you’re mixing metals throughout the home, you will likely have one dominant metal for all of your major finishes.

Tip 2: Choose 1-2 Accent Metals

After you’ve chosen your dominant metal, select one or two accent metals to create contrast. Adding more than this will make the room look too busy and unintentional. Make sure to look at the undertones in the metal when choosing the accents. For example, Nickel has a warm undertone and generally works better than chrome when paired with brass and gold. When it comes to black metals, we call it a neutral, it goes with everything,

Tip 3: Placement is everything

When mixing metals in one space, separate your metals by height so that the similar items are on the same plane this creates some visual order. You can also dedicate metals to separate categories, for example in a bathroom try using all of the same metal for plumbing fixtures and changing it up on the accessories and lighting.

Tip 4: Balance Is Important

You will want to use each metal at least twice in the space in order to create balance. Remember to use your dominant metal more than your accents.

Tip 5: Start Small

If you are still unsure about pulling off the mixed metal look start small by adding small décor items that are not permanent. Mixing metals with less expensive items makes the jump less intimidating. I would also suggest sticking with just 2 metals instead of 3 until you have mastered the mix.

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