What interior colors match with natural oak finish?

Updated February 21, 2017

Oak is a common type of wood for interiors in American homes. Oak is strong, has a distinctively open grain and wears well. You'll often find oak floors or oak furniture in American homes. A natural oak finish is a suitable shade for interiors; it's light, slightly golden and showcases the wood nicely. Finding other colours to match it is simple.

Light Yellow

Light shades of yellow bring out the best aspects of a natural oak finish.These shades are already evocative of sunlight, so such shades bring out the sunny aspects of oak's natural finish. Light yellow in a room with a naturally finished oak floor or lots of oak furniture is a sure-fire way to create a bright, cheerful, sun-filled environment. Avoid dark shades of yellow such as butter yellow or sunflower yellow as these colours could easily overshadow the light tones of the natural oak finish.


Shades of cream such as light tones of beige and oatmeal colours will complement the neutral tones of the natural oak finish. This will create a light environment that possesses a certain freshness that will complement any decor style from minimalist modern to a rustic country style. The bright, neutral tones are almost evocative of sitting on a sandy beach on a bright, sunny day.

Dark Browns

Dark browns, when paired with a natural light oak finished, give you the best of both worlds. These shades naturally complement the faint, light brown hints in the oak. However, the darkness of the brown creates a contrasting dynamic so that both shades emphasise each other innately because they're so different. This colour scheme can look as dramatically modern as you like, or the extremes of colour can look old-fashioned, somewhat reminiscent of Tudor-style panelling.

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About the Author

Lane Cummings is originally from New York City. She attended the High School of Performing Arts in dance before receiving her Bachelor of Arts in literature and her Master of Arts in Russian literature at the University of Chicago. She has lived in St. Petersburg, Russia, where she lectured and studied Russian. She began writing professionally in 2004 for the "St. Petersburg Times."