How To Nail The Mixed Metal Look

Two phrases you hear all the time are “it’s all about the details” and “it’s all about the mix.” I agree with both statements in regards to decor. So let’s mix up the details with mixing metals.

You have probably been mixing things up for a long time in your home. You may have an antique family heirloom mixed with your more contemporary stuff or a piece of modern art hung over a vintage flea market find. People are not buying complete bedroom or dining room suits like they use to…you get the idea.

Trying to create the perfectly, imperfect interior can be tricky when you think about it too much, but in reality it’s really not that hard. It’s the juxtaposition of objects that creates interest and a bit of tension. This is where the “mix” comes into play. If you’re looking to mix things up a bit, maybe this post will give you some inspiration.

More and more we are seeing mixed metals in the home, especially the kitchen and bath. Let’s look at a few ways to embrace this new “trend” which I think is here to stay. Mixing metals will keep your spaces looking fresh and interesting.

Phase One: Mixing Metals for Beginners

If mixing metals in your kitchen or bathroom really makes you nervous consider taking a more subtle approach.

  • Stay in the same color family but mix your finishes. Think of mother nature. There are a trillion shades of green living together in harmony. The plants are different shades, textures and species but they are all green and work together beautifully. The powder room has shinny silver sconces, a brushed nickel faucet and the hardware on the chest has a pattern that is both brushed and shinny. They all play nicely together but don’t come off as “matchy matchy”.

  • The same concept works in the kitchen. Stay in the silver family but vary the finish. There is a good chance you have at least one stainless appliance. If not it is included in the list below of kitchen elements that you could mix and keep in the silver family but vary the finish.

  • Brushed Stainless Appliances

  • Hammered Silver prep sink

  • Shinny pulls and knobs

  • Faucet could be shinny or matte

  • Vent hood of mix of both


Phase Two: Mixing Metals For The Design Commitment Phobe

Image via Addison Weeks of their Lane collection designed in collaboration with Charlotte interior designer Barrie Benson

Image via Addison Weeks of their Lane collection designed in collaboration with Charlotte interior designer Barrie Benson

If you are ready to try mixing colors of metal in your house, but are still a little unsure, take baby steps. Change elements that can easily be switched out if you change your mind.

  • Such as cabinet hardware

  • mirror

  • sconces

    Start in a small bathroom. In the image below, Nashville designer Sarah Bartholomew mixes metals effortlessly. The soft gold mirror and sconces are hung over a polished nickel faucet.

Another example of mixing metals.

How to Mix Metals

Phase Three: Mixing Metals For The Full Blown Mixologist

After working your way through phases one and two you are probably ready to become a Metal Mixologist. Now that you are ready to throw caution to the wind and mix away, how can you be sure you won’t create a look that is chaotic and unintentional. It’s really not that hard. You are just going to apply a little common sense when taking things to the next level. Just make sure that when you throw a new “color” metal into a room you repeat it somewhere else. Also keep “like” things (like cabinet hardware) in the same metal.

The beautiful kitchen below is a perfect example of well mixed metals. The lighting is in the soft gold tones which is also repeated on the stove. The dark metal hardware is complimented by the black in the stove and the polished nickel pot filler looks beautiful over the stainless stove top. This kitchen not just beautiful, it is warm, inviting and packed full of charm.


Try mixing some metals in your house. You can do it! Thanks so much for reading.