You’ve just moved into your beautifully renovated home, now it is time to decorate – yay! However, you may be finding it difficult to match the newly installed hardwood floors with your antique dressers, chests, and tables and you are at your wit’s end trying to bring the rooms together. Luckily, BLB Custom Building has a few tips and tricks for incorporating different wood and how to maintain cohesiveness throughout the space.

Step 1: Find the wood “foundation”

To begin, find a wood piece within the room and use it as your “foundation.” The foundation will serve as a guide when selecting various furnishing and fixtures for the space and should incorporate a dominant wood value. We suggest narrowing your selection down to light, medium, and dark wood values and using the hardwood floors as the “jumping off” point as they are typically the largest wood piece within a space, however, you can certainly use wooden hutches, cabinets, or tables as well!

 For the Colonial Remodel project, while the original hardwood remained, the homeowners decided to refinish and stain – providing an excellent “foundation” as a reference when selecting other finishes – such as the butcher block countertop and barstools.

Step 2: Analyze the undertones

Kitchen renovation - BLB Custom BuildingWhile the wood certainly does not need to match, they should complement each other. Wood can be characterized by warm, cool, and neutral tones – with warmer undertones including hints of red, orange, and yellow and cooler undertones including hints of green, blue, purple, and gray. Reference back to your wood “foundation” – is the piece warm or cool-toned? If the dominant tone is warm, stick with other warm woods to assure aesthetic consistency. Above, the Kitchen Addition and Renovation project included various wood values within the countertop floors and floating shelves – however, the homeowner’s stuck with warmer undertones to maintain cohesion. 

Step 3: Mind the grain

If you are struggling to find the right wood pieces, try matching the natural grain patterns. Additionally, different grain patterns can add some texture to the space; however, remember that too many grains can seem cluttered and make the space look too busy.

We recommend accentuating the grain of one piece, such as the large, vertical grain of the floors, and complimenting the floors with a softer, smaller grain pattern, such as the barstool legs. Additionally, the horizontal grain of the butcher block countertop provides a wonderful contrast while still minding the overall look of the kitchen.

Step 4: Add a buffer

To break up the grain differences between a dining room table and the hardwood floors, play around with funky, eye-catching rugs – which serve as a design element and buffer item between your wood pieces. Adding a buffer will help dilute the different colors of the wood and can enhance the tones selected for the room. Rugs are also the perfect solution if you are hoping to add a bit of contrast to the space.

For example, this decorative rug adds a perfect buffer between the warmer floors and lighter dining room table, while also complementing the other warm tones of the kitchen.


BLB Custom Building is a Design-Scope-Build company where we believe in collaboratively working hand-in-hand with the designer and homeowner – contact us today to discuss your next project! Our qualified team of professionals, partners, and subcontractors can help transform your space into the ultimate dream home.


Photographs by Kate McNamara, Freebird Photography