The Best Paint Colors to Complement Medium Oak Woodwork


While most shades of regular oak have blondish hue, medium oak has a darker color. Medium oaks have a richer color, a combination of numerous warm shades of light brown, red and golden orange, producing a final color that resembles the outside of an almond. Selecting paint colors for medium oak woodwork should be a pleasure as several colors complement this remarkable shade.


  • Even though medium oak wood is made up of a palette of different colors, one of the main colors of that palette is brown. Thus, you can paint the surrounding walls or woodwork around medium oak woodwork any shade of brown, and it will effortlessly complement the natural wood tones. For example, you can go for a more understated look and use a lighter brown like cafe au lait or sand, or you can go bolder with colors like chocolate brown or coffee brown for a more dramatic effect. Brown is a shade that can look striking without looking dreary.

Reds and Oranges

  • What makes medium oak wood such a suitable shade of wood for interiors is that it has such a warm welcoming color. Part of what makes the hue of the wood seem so warm is the presence of red tones to the color. Accentuate this by painting the surrounding walls and selecting pieces of furniture in tones of red, orange or bronze. For example, reddish colors mixed with brown, like sienna, complement the medium oak naturally, or daring colors like cherry red or copper give the room a degree of vibrancy while looking harmonious with the medium oak.

Yellows and Creams

  • Medium oak wood has a diverse color palette; one of the colors that this palette includes to a tiny degree is the color gold. Emphasize this golden quality of the wood by selecting any shade of yellow to delicately complement the medium oak shade. For example, light yellows like butter yellow or satin yellow keep the room looking light and airy yet spotlight the golden aspects of the wood. More drastic shades of yellow, like mustard yellow or lemon yellow, keep the room looking lively while bringing out the golden tones of the medium oak.

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  • "The Keys to Color: A Decorator's Handbook for Coloring Paints, Plasters"; Dean Sickler, Sickler E. Dean; 2010
  • "House Colors: Exterior Color by Style of Architecture"; Susan Hershman; 2007
  • Photo Credit Chris Stein/Stockbyte/Getty Images
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