How To Create A Cohesive Looking Home. Even If Your Homes Currently A Mismatch Of Furniture.



If you’ve been collecting things for your home and trying to pull it together into a beautiful interior, but you’re just not quite getting to that point of wow then read on..

Unfortunately all over the internet we get sold the idea that if you buy beautiful things you love, you will create a beautiful looking home. 

In reality beautiful things don’t guarantee a beautiful interior, and while it does help, its most likely you have a mix of furniture that you’ve been gifted, bought at various stages, as well as the new things you love.

If you’ve ever heard yourself say “ if only I could buy that…” or “if only I had that budget“ my home would be amazing then you’re in luck because actually a beautiful interior might be closer than you think.

So how do you pull all of this mismatched (or semi-mismatched) furniture together into a cohesive (or consistent looking) interior that looks designed?

Well, it’s not some magical thing that only designers can pull together. Its actually pretty logical.

Things look cohesive when there is a level of sameness in the room. Now I’m not talking matchy-matchy furniture in all the same wood finish, that’ll look intensely boring.

What I mean is a fine thread of sameness throughout your rooms. Here are some of the most common ways to do it.

  • Carrying a continuous flooring finish throughout the home
  • Having a consistent colour palette
  • Having a consistent mix of styles throughout your home
  • Repeating certain patterns through the home, it could be a flooring pattern that also is referenced in the patterns of the bathroom tiles and in some of the furniture detailing too as an example

Sound overwhelming? The easiest way BY FAR is having a consistent colour palette run throughout your home. Sound even more overwhelming?

It doesn’t have to be.

Here are my 4 simple steps for creating a cohesive colour scheme at home.




1) Get Clear On The Colours You Absolutely Love

Until you know for certain your colours it can feel super overwhelming picking colour for your home.

I put together an exercise which is the deepest I know to gaining absolute certainty over your interior colours

If you haven’t signed up and received my interior design paint guide yet. Download it now, and do the exercise. This exercise will make all the decisions in the following steps that much easier. You can signup to get it here.

Done it? Ok. Now before we move on for this exercise let’s say you tend to love these types of colours…


colour ideas


2) Work Out The Existing Base Colours Of Your Home

The second step is to look at the fixed existing colours in your home. For instance. What are the colour undertones of your flooring, trim, and any other major fixed elements like kitchen cabinets etc that you’re just not willing to part with right now.

Each will have it’s own undertone of colour. If you’ve looked at the white paint chips before, you’ll know what I mean by this. White can be a greeny white, a bluey white, a warmer yellow based white.

You want to apply this idea to work out the undertones of your other fixed elements in your home so that you can match the other paint colours in your home to complement what you’ve got, rather than clash with it.

For instance, do your deep brown wood floors have a slightly orange (warm colour) undertone to them? What about the granite counter top? Take note of these undertones now.

Is there a general theme of colour undertones? Like the wood on this credenza for instance.

Gio Ponti on 1st Dibs


3) Create A Cohesive Colour Scheme Around Your Existing Colour Undertones

Now you’re going to take the base colours of the fixed elements of your home, and use some basic rules of colour to make them look good.

I like to find a middle point between the colours you love (found in the first exercise) and the colours that work with your existing fitted elements. Use the basic rules of colour (below) to find this middle ground



Here are the 5 basic rules:

1) Keep it within the family – earth tones with earth tones, jewel tones with jewel tones, pastels with pastels… you get the idea.

The wood is a deep rich colour you like dark blue toned interiors  so the below interior would be an example of keeping it in the family of deep rich intense colours.


An Indian Summer


2) Keep colours with their buddies – and by that I mean, if the they are side by side on the colour wheel. You can combine 3 to 4 colours, sometimes more when they’re next to each other.

So your floor has a warm orange undertone then you could look at having other warm tones in the room like reds, pinks, yellows, purples. Or buddies of your favourite colour which is cooler and tends to balance nicely the warmness of the undertones of the wood. Like the blues, greens, purples. The image below is a good example of this.


domaine home


3) Opposites attract – and by that I mean combine colours across from one another on the colour wheel. What is particularly good, is to pick one of the colours as a pale colour (from the centre of the colour wheel). Then choose its opposite colour as a darker colour (from the outside of the colour wheel).

Blue is opposite orange on the colour wheel so imagine a deep chalky blue which will complement the undertones of the floor and make it look even more beautiful. This is often my favourite type of colour co-ordination as it’s easy to balance between warm and cool colours and always looks good.


Patricia Goijens


4) Threesomes work but I prefer two – colours that form a triangle on the colour wheel, also work well together. Pick one of the colours, as the main colour for the room. It will set the overall vibe. With the main colour chosen, use different versions of that one colour to add variety. Then, the other colours work as accents to that colour. The accent colours can be more bright/bold and should be used in small doses. Two out of the three colours is the easiest to pull off successfully.



So if your floors have an orange undertone you could do green as your main colour on your walls and have a few orange or magenta accents. Or blue as your main colour and yellows and pinks as your accent like this striking hallway.



5) We all get our fair share – for multicolours to look good and not crazy, you are best to keep them as accents. And in even doses.  A background of neutrals for most of the space, helps give you some relief. That neutral could be any tone of white, grey, (or somewhere in between).

Say you love grey as your neutral. You could paint your walls a warm grey or white to match warm orange undertones of your floors or a cool blue grey or white to complement your floors (opposites attract). Then have a myriad of bright multi colours in the rest of your room (just remember to keep them in even doses. Here are two examples.


Shop Sweet Things


Architectural Digest


To see examples of the 5 basic rules in action check out my full article here.

**Note: All warm colours, or all cool colours in a house tends to make it feel either too hot or cold to live in. Ideally you want a balance of cool and warm colours in your rooms**

Ok, got an idea of the colour mix that’ll work for what you like, and the colours your stuck with?


4) How To Actually Pick A Cohesive Colour Scheme For You

Ok, now it’s about putting it all together. I’ve got a basic training wheels formula for you to use to actually picking your colour scheme but it needs some explaining (which would make this post e-nooor-mous!). However I just released it in my latest webinar which you can check out below (colour scheme starts minute 14:20).



It really can be simpler than you think to pull together a cohesive looking home that’s not boring. If you’re liking the content, please share it. This was hours of work to bring you the most comprehensive article that covers exactly what you need to creating a cohesive looking home. So I really hope you use it, apply it, and share it with those who need it.

Big hugs and lots of love,


P.S. If you want to learn how to create yourself a stunning interior then check out my Interior Design For Beginners Ecourse. It’s open for enrolment for only a few weeks. With no other chance to get in again until 2016. And a limit of only 20 spaces which are already starting to sell out. It’ll take your home from none to done in 6 weeks. Learn more about it here.


Published by: Rach Bryant


  • Joan

    July 15, 2015

    What can I do about a very small kitchen 5ft by 5 ft.

    • rbadmin

      July 15, 2015

      Hi Joan, that is small, I can see why you’re not sure what to do, but don’t worry there are some tricks you can use. For small spaces to feel bigger you have a few routes. One is that you go really bold, detailed, and incredible so your eye gets distracted by what’s going on inside and doesn’t notice the size so much. The other is to keep the colour palette really tight so it all kinda fades into the background, and add details like mirrors to extend the visual space, as well as beautiful details with a few key pieces to entice the eye away from the size. Stunning light fixtures are good for that, same too with plants and beautiful decorative items that capture the eye.