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What Colours Go With Brown?

Brown is a mature, timeless colour. From dark earth tones, to taupe or greige, you can create grounded natural and neutral spaces in your home by experimenting with brown.

Something like Sunday Soul, a foggy grey beige, or a light taupe such as Good Intentions, or the delicate, warm Pudding would work to bring warmth into a room. They’re reminiscent of nude, a very popular aesthetic often seen on Instagram in celebrity homes, and on celebrity bodies.

Layering these shades in your home creates a soothing and classy look, with complementary tones working harmoniously together. Brown shades are refined, tonal and warm. They give a nurturing, comforting feel, and are easy to style as they go with so many other colours.

@sloopemc using natural woods and leathers to contrast with the shade Pamas for this kitchen reno.

Perhaps you have another reason to love brown. You may have a stunning vintage leather sofa which you want to make a feature of, or an exposed brick wall, or dark wooden floorboards. All of these will need to be paired with a paint shade that brings out the warmth of the brown, but won’t clash with it.

Luckily there are lots of colours which work brilliantly with brown. Lean into the masculine energy and use navy or green, or add some feminine colours such as pink. Play with the natural, earthy yellows, oranges, and reds.

Whatever your style, you’ll find plenty of paint colours to go with brown.

White, or off- white

A crisp white wall, such as Screenshot, contrasts beautifully with the earthiness of a brown tone and is a classic, stylish combination. White and brown is a modern, fresh look with hints of Scandinavian design. One of the reasons it’s so timeless is that the brown tones of wooden or leather furniture are warmer and more inviting than, say, a grey or black sofa and in a white room. You could further soften the look with throws, cushions and curtains, or embrace the minimalist look.

Screenshot works beautifully with the tans and browns @the.boilerhouse chose for their contemporary living area. 

Having brown and white may be a little stark in your room, however. Brilliant white leaves nowhere to hide with its pristine finish so going with an off- white will give a more relaxing tone. Choosing an off- white with a yellow, pink or orange undertone will hint to the warmth of the brown and complement it perfectly. Shades such as Pampas and Safe Play work well.

Painting your walls a neutral brown shade is a gentle way to introduce a brown colour palette to your home, and you can still include white or off-white paint to complete your room. The ceiling, doors, windowsills, and skirting boards could be all painted in the same shade of white or off- white, to give a cohesive, calm feel to your room.

Increase the industrial elements to your home by including an exposed brick wall or exposed chimney breast. This is a great bridge between the rich wooden furniture and the pale walls. Add colourful artwork, if that’s your style, or fill the space with plants to promote the natural feel.

Green

The combination of green and brown is calming, natural and classic.

If you have brown furniture, exposed brick walls or wooden floors, bringing green into your colour scheme will completely change the feel of your space.

A deep greyed green like Darlington, gives a softer, classy look. There are hints of grey in this delicate pale green which works perfectly as a background colour for the brown. Your flooring and furniture will stand out against the knocked back green, yet everything will work together harmoniously. It’s also gentle enough to be painted on every wall if you want it to be, or make it a feature wall on one wall.

Darlington is such a beaut grubby green. The perfect backdrop for those retro or modern pieces. @Danlovattdesign

Alternatively, take the plunge with a deep emerald green, like Ditch the Tie. It speaks of heritage and tradition while hinting to silent, peaceful forests. It’s bold, moody and gives a masculine energy, which would work perfectly in a large room. Painting all of the walls in such a dominant shade creates a timeless vibe, yet keeps it cosy.

If you wanted to temper the intensity of the green and brown colour scheme, or your room is on the smaller side, you could incorporate some white. Pair your brown furniture and wooden floors with some statement painted wood panelling. The flawless green, with white walls, give the feel of modern nature, without it being overwhelming in your room,

Warm neutrals

Layering warm neutrals in your home is the perfect way to complement brown tones. Having Pudding, Sunday Soul, Good Intentions, or Mindful on your walls will mean your room will look light and bright, while still having personality. These durable, timeless shades will work together or alone.

If you do have brown furniture in your space, you can be sure that the warm undertones of the natural wood or leather will work perfectly with a neutral brown paint shade.

Pudding being a show stopper of a backdrop for this 70's hit of brown tones. 

Instead of having one colour dominating the room, having shades of neutrals gives a calmer, softer and more cohesive visual effect.

Pink

Fun, playful, warm and feminine, pink is a brilliant combination with brown tones.

The warmth of pink, and the warm tones of browns will always complement each other, but it’s about getting the balance right. Having brown paint and pink paint in one room could clash, but using pink paint to highlight your brown furniture or floors is a great way to combine the two shades.

Be bold and paint whole walls in your favourite pale pink shade, or be strategic and paint a feature wall. Painting a block of colour on to your wall behind a sideboard, sofa or headboard will accentuate your furniture and make it even more of a statement. If you have an exposed brick wall, pink is a great way to soften the overall look of the raw, unfinished surface and is an unapologetic combination.  

Using pinks in a room with brown lifts it from a darker, more masculine energy to a lighter, more feminine one. You keep the elegant tone of deep brown furniture or dark stained floors but add the fun and joy of pink. Pairing dusky rose, such as Ciao Sofia, and brown gives a strong mid- century vibe.

Ciao, Sofia, the pastel pink that compliments all the browns/tans in your home.

Yellow

There are two yellow shades that work particularly well with brown.

Firstly, vibrant yellow. Adding such a bold colour immediately lifts brown’s earthy tones to make your room lighter and brighter. The warmth of yellow works brilliantly with the warm shades of brown. Adding yellow brings a sunny, summery and cheerful feel to a room, and will make your furniture and floor look great.

Mustard, on the other hand, gives a deeper, more vintage vibe. The combination of brown and mustard harks back to the mid-century style. Mustard, such as Moritz, is a warm, grubby colour which leans into the earth tones of the brown and away from the sunshine tones of bright yellow. Mustard makes a space cosy, comfortable and attractive.

Orange

Similarly to yellow, orange works really well with shades of brown. It’s a classic 1970s combination and is increasingly popular as mid-century design is more celebrated. More and more we see 1970s styles, such as macrame, become widely featured in our homes. Why not bring on the colour too?

You can approach the combination of brown and orange in a number of ways.

Firstly, paint your room mainly off- white, but have one pastel orange feature wall or chimney breast. This gently incorporates orange while still allowing your brown furniture and wooden flooring to take centre stage. Elio is a great shade for this. The warmth and energy of the orange is there, but it’s not too much. The paler orange links brilliantly with the earth tones of brown, but it still captures the sunny uplifting vibe.

Alternatively, you can show your bold, tropical tastes with orange. Go all out and paint one or more walls a rich, stimulating shade of My Island. A colour as deep as brown can absolutely take the vibrant shades of orange and not be drowned out. This rich orange gives hints of terracotta, hibiscus followers and sun drenched holidays. My Island is bright and it works harmoniously with the dark wooden floors or mid-century furniture.

My Island breaking the seas with this simple but effective colour blocking. 

If you want a touch of the bold, vibrant orange, painting your ceiling doesn’t get much bolder! If you keep the walls a neutral colour with an orange undertone, the ceiling will pop. A colourful person needs a colourful house, after all.

Navy

Navy blue and brown is a classic, elegant and masculine look. There’s a reason it’s timeless, and that’s because it works.

There are so many ways to include the two colours in your home. A inky, midnight blue, such as 2AM, combined with a rich chocolate brown sofa or floor are both strong enough to match each other while neither overshadows the other. The warm brown tones contrast with the cool tones of the blue, but together they work beautifully.

2AM adding depth and dimension to @soph_eddie kitchen/dining area. 

Emphasise the elegant feel with floor to ceiling navy walls, and rich mahogany furniture completing a period look. Keeping the ceiling white balances the space, but you can still have a rich, warm and masculine room. Adding more white to the space, such as only painting a blue feature wall will lessen the intensity, if that’s more your vibe.

Adding a lot of white, however, will give a nautical feel. Navy blue is literally inspired by the Royal Navy uniforms and is perfect for coastal properties. Elevate the classic look by pairing with seagrass rugs, classic stripes, and wooden panelling.

Navy blue works brilliantly with an exposed brick wall. The industrial, raw, unfinished surface juxtaposes with the elegant navy blue. You can accessorise with plants for an on-trend space.

Red

Red and brown work together beautifully, but can be overwhelming if not done carefully.

The Old Corset Factory complimenting the exposed brick and wooden features in @1930s_semi_charmed_life bedroom.

Heritage shades of red, such as The Old Corset Factory work especially well in period homes. The high ceilings of the Victorian and Edwardian homes mean they can take the warm, bold tones of the red. This, combined with deep wooden floors or antique furniture creates an inviting, traditional room. Keeping cornicing, ceilings and skirting boards white will tone down the intensity.

  

 

 


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