Matchy-Matchy is a No-No

by Star Furniture on November 18, 2011

Mixed and matched bliss: Greens, reds, solids and prints. Plus fringe!

Interior design 101: Just because they sell a matching sofa, loveseat, chair and ottoman does not mean you should buy the whole set.

If you do, you run the risk of having to live with a living room that looks like this:

Home shouldn’t feel like a furniture store.

The key is mix and match your furniture, and it’s really not all that hard. Combine dark and light leather, leather with fabric, patterned fabrics with plain.

Leather sofa? Get a fabric accent chair. Printed fabric sofa? Get a plain fabric or a leather accent chair. Did you already buy a room full of big, brown furniture? Air it out with a fabric cocktail ottoman, like so:

A matching dark leather ottoman would’ve been a bit too much, don’t you think?

Mixing and matching is important because it changes up the room’s visual AND textural palettes. Many people realize they have to use multiple colors or layer shades of the same color, but they often overlook the use of texture.

Room design and furnishings by Thomasville.

Below, the dark leather sofa grounds the room, while the chairs’ patterned fabric brightens it up with just the right amount of fun & frill.

Beautiful room by Vintage Revivals.

This last one is great because it looks like a lot of regular people’s homes: wall-to-wall carpeting, no fancypants architectural details, and big beige furniture. But throw in a blue & white ikat chair, a few fun toss pillows and some pattern on what appears to be a table-turned-ottoman, and look! The room is homey and charming and vivacious. (Drapes never hurt either, but that’s a subject for a different day.)

This down-to-earth design is by 6th Street Design School.

P.S. The caveat to all this is that there’s a reason it’s called “mixing and matching” instead of just “mixing.” Remember the match part of it, because too many colors or textures make the room chaotic.

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