Is Brown Furniture Back? Yes! Here’s How to Style It


In a world dominated by bright, airy rooms, brown furniture has become synonymous with dated. Heavy. Clunky. Something best painted over, donated or given away to the highest bidder at a yard sale. But it doesn’t have to be that way—and four designers are ready to prove it. They’re big believers in the way a few pieces of dark wood furniture can add depth, richness and soulfulness to a space, making it the sort of place you never want to leave.

First, let’s get on the same page: What is “brown furniture?”

It’s a phrase thrown around a lot, and generally, we’re talking pieces made out of solid, dark wood, like walnut, teak, rosewood and mahogany. For years, light tones have dominated the market, but Society Social founder and creative director Roxy Te Owens says that’s all starting to change: People “are beginning to crave layered, ‘homey’ interiors—spaces that mix a variety of textures, patterns and colors, vs. minimalist spaces that feel un-lived in.”

These pieces—even if you’re staring down a chocolate brown leather sofa you don’t know what to do with but can’t live without (it’s just so comfy!)—can be key to giving your space character.

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