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White walls and wood floors are a timeless combination

June 19, 2014

wood floorsWhen you rent a new apartment or make a down payment on your first condominium, chances are you'll inherit a living space that the landlord or previous owner has painted in white. Don't rush to judgment - white or off-white walls are beautifully complemented by wood floors. If your new digs have high-quality floors like those in Anderson's Antique Walk collection, you may want to keep your walls just the way they are.

Real estate agents frequently advise people selling homes to paint walls white so that prospective buyers will have an easier time picturing their own furnishings and accessories fitting the space they're inspecting. The theory is, if you decide to buy, you can always change white walls any color you desire.

But why switch? Traditional white may not be for everybody, but for those looking for something both classic and stylish - or for apartment dwellers who aren't allowed to paint their walls - white is a hue that goes with any accent color. It has a clean, brightening effect on any room, particularly those that lack a good stream of natural light.

There's also no color that brings out the warm luster of wood tones in floors, wall trim and interior doors better than various shades of white. Even if you don't have these architectural elements, there are ways you can add wood into your home design that will bring out this timeless decorating style.

Adding wood features
By carefully layering your wood furniture and accessories in different shades and wood species, you'll create an attractive panorama in any room of your home.

One way to add wood to your living space is to line the walls with bookshelves, as featured in Elle Decor magazine. If you have hardwood flooring, so much the better - you can match the wood tones in the shelving to your floors for an integrated look. Not only do books create great decor on their own, but set into a tall, continuous line of shelves adds the subtle brown variations and visual texture against the simplicity of white walls.

Wood furniture such as geometrically designed mission-style furnishings stands out beautifully against white walls. While mission has a decidedly masculine quality, the simple design lines offer a mix of rusticity and elegance that will suit a variety of tastes. On the other hand, if most of your furniture is upholstered, add wood with a side table or a rocking chair to bring out the best in your white walls.