The Magic of Mixing Metals

Photography by William Dickey

Text by Bethany Adams

While opting for all chrome fixtures in the kitchen or going with only gold in the bedroom may seem like a safe choice when decorating your home, mixing metals can do wonders for a design’s depth and visual interest. But how do you mix them in a way that looks intentional and not accidental? We’ve collected a few of our favorite examples to help you incorporate this lasting trend into your cottage!

Star of the Show

Photography via Studio McGee

Selecting a dominant metal and complementing it with one or two contrasting pieces is one of the simplest ways to make sure your space looks well-planned and cohesive. In this bathroom, a pair of gold mirrors are the perfect complement to chrome faucets, cabinet hardware, and sconces.

Contrasting Textures

mixed metallics
Photography by Amy Lamb

Don’t just consider which metals you’re choosing—pay attention to the finish as well. The addition of an antiqued but reflective frame elevates the smooth, matte-black surfaces in this hall, keeping the vignette from appearing flat.

The Gallery Approach

mixed metals
Photography by William Dickey

Rather than competing for attention, this all-white kitchen lets every metal surface shine. The understated backdrop subtly showcases everything from hammered copper containers and a brushed brass faucet to gold sconces and stainless steel-legged barstools.

A Little Distance

Photography via Maggie Griffin Design

Rather than stacking contrasting metals together in one spot, spreading them throughout a space can keep things from looking too disjointed. While gold frames with a weathered finish share a wall with silver-edged mirrors, the oiled bronze chandelier benefits from the added distance of the raised ceiling.

Broken and Beautiful

Photography via Place of My Taste

Break up similar metals with finishes that provide a stronger contrast. In this design, sconces high on the wall are near in tone to the drawer pulls, while the sink hardware in between throws a splash of darker style into the middle of the scene.

Repetition, Repetition

Photography by Mac Jamieson, Styling by Amy Wilson

Repeating one particular metal throughout a space is the easiest way to tie your design together and keep contrasting metals from looking out of place. The dark tone of this dining room’s oiled bronze chandelier is echoed not only in the shelving in the corner but also in the base of the gold-topped candlesticks.

Shop our latest issues for more inspiration!