Accent Furniture and How to Use it

Accent Furniture and How to Use it

Contributed by Beni Restea

Real Estate Agent

If you’re thinking about adding a bit of flair, color, and personality to your home, or maybe you’re starting from scratch, accent furniture can be your key ingredient. Besides comfort and functionality, our homes should match our style, express something about us and be uniquely ours. Accent furniture will add warmth, personality, and character to your home’s interior design while reflecting your personal style. We can’t all be professionals at interior design, but with a few simple guidelines you too can put some sparkle into your home with just a few accent elements.

What is Accent Furniture?

In interior design, regardless if it is applied to a home or an office, accent furniture can make the difference between a bland-looking room, with no personality and charm, and your room. When thinking about accent furniture, to give you a better idea of what it means, try comparing it to accessories. Even the best, most elegant outfits can look dull without the appropriate accessories like a belt, some exciting shoes, or a purse. It’s the same with interior design. The most elegant and extravagant designs can look bland if they are not complemented with accent items.

Accent furniture isn’t used for its functionality. Their primary role is to add color, texture, and drama to your decor. It stands out in any room, draws the eyes, and complements the room’s general decor. You can use it anywhere, and most pieces of furniture can be accent items in a room.


How to Use Accent Furniture

The most important thing to understand about accent furniture is that, as we mentioned above, accent furniture is not essential to the room’s function. While a bedroom’s focal point will always be the bed, accent furniture is necessary from a design perspective. It can also enhance the room’s primary function when used correctly while also adding vibrancy, drama, and definition and complementing the rest of your decor.

Add a Splash of Color

The most crucial aspect of accent furniture is color. The main decorating rule is the 60-30-10 rule. This refers to the color scheme used: 60% for the main color, 30% for the secondary color, and 10% for the accent color. When you’re decorating your home, try to pay attention to this rule as much as possible. Otherwise, a room may look too crowded or too plain. Find the middle ground, and you should be fine.

Whether you’re starting from scratch or redecorating your home, set up a color scheme for each room or the whole house and adhere to it. The main color should be the walls and the necessary pieces of furniture for each room (bed, couch, wardrobe, kitchen cabinets, etc.). The secondary color can be the flooring, carpets, one wall, draperies, etc. The accent color should be the nonessential furniture in the room (artworks, an armchair, throw pillows, lamp, flowers, candles).

Pro tip: To choose the color for your accent furniture, you should look at what works best with the main and secondary colors. Use a color wheel and figure out the complementary colors you need.

Style it up

Once you figure out which color you want, define your style and research items that fit best. Whether you like modern, contemporary, traditional, French country, rustic or coastal, accent furniture will make it stand out. When you already have the bed, wardrobe, and vanity, you might need nightstands, a reading nook, a mirror, shelves, or photographs. These don’t serve the room’s function, but they can enhance the room’s role, comfort, and even functionality.

When choosing an accent piece, look for something that stands out, a bold design that complements the rest of the room and defines your style. You might also want to take into account what else you might need in the room. For example, if you like to increase the comfort levels through Hygge decorating tips aside from throw pillows that are perfect accent elements and blankets, you might also need more storage space. Trunks and baskets have plenty of room and can also serve as coffee tables. Now, if you have a coffee table, you could also look into a comfortable armchair for your reading nook.

Pro tip: Based on color, the armchair would win in an accent item match as the basket or trunk can be a similar color to the flooring. The armchair can have a bold dark green color, and you can add a soft rug with a splash of green that will further solidify the color scheme.


What to do Before you Start Shopping?

A few things need to be done before you start browsing every furniture store within a mile radius. The following steps need to occur before purchasing any eye-catching items that fit your style and color patterns.

Pay Attention to Proportions

The first things that need to be measured are the rooms. The last thing that you want is to add too much furniture to your room and make it look crowded. A crowded room is neither stylish nor personalized. Too much drama doesn’t work anywhere, not in your life and neither in your room. This is why an oversized accent element might draw too much attention and fail to complement the rest of your decor.

Also, consider that if you intend to purchase an accent chair, the other furtinture pieces should be within four inches of the accent chair. While accent items don’t need to respect the design, color, or shape of the rest of the furniture, a Chesterfield couch doesn’t work with a slim-legged chair or side table. Bulky furniture won’t allow accent elements to work as accents if they are too small.

Pro tip: A coffee table should be 2/3 the length of the couch it is paired with, and wall art should be 4/7 of the wall’s size.

Take a Second Look

Before you start your shopping list, look at the furniture that you currently have. If there are pieces of furniture that no longer fit your style, consider refurbishing them before you throw them away. If an old coffee table or a bar cabinet, based on size and functionality, might still fit, consider throwing a fresh coat of paint that works with your accent items. Including it in your new interior design idea won’t only add personality to your home while also saving you some money, it won’t create more waste.

There are several ways through which you can sustainably refurnish your old furniture. Especially old wooden items with a history and a sturdy structure should not be thrown away if they can be salvaged.

Pro tip: In a modern styled living room, an old bar cabinet will be a backdrop for everything else. It can work as a splash of color if combined with throw pillows, rugs, painting, etc., while also adding a much-needed contrast for a black and white living room.


When decorating your home with accent furniture, you should always look beyond the simple, beyond the functionality, and think about pieces that will enhance every room. These accent elements will add personality to your home while also serving as an excellent focal point. Even if your whole house is white walls and wooden floors, you can bring inspiration, excitement, and flavor into your home through accent furniture.

If you feel inspired to start decorating a whole house from scratch but don’t yet have an empty house to let your creativity run wild, contact real estate agents near you, and they’ll find you a blank canvas in no time. There’s nothing more inspiring than an empty house that you can do anything you want with. Find your dream accent furniture and use it to accentuate the best parts of your home.