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What comes to mind when you think of ways to make a room feel more styled — meaning more pulled-together and designed? Perhaps hanging a fun piece of artwork or laying a beautiful throw at the foot of the bed. Here’s a technique you may not have considered: adding metallic pieces.

While a pop of gold, silver or rose gold can certainly add a feeling of luxury or glamour, it can also serve several other functions. Metallics can brighten a room, distract from a challenging room size and even create something extraordinary out of something plain or old. Here are 10 ways metallics can improve the styling in your home.


Nexus Designs, original photo on Houzz


1. Create a focal point. Metallics command attention, since their shiny nature draws the eye in. A metal piece is perfectly suited to serve as a standout feature or focal point in a room needing some focus.

Here, a plain bed and wall have been transformed into a shimmery design standout, thanks to the metallic headboard. Looking almost like a large piece of art, it creates a mirror-like feeling and adds a radiant glow to an ordinary space. The silver chandelier adds another metallic pop.


2. Transform a structural element. Some structural elements can be eyesores, with no easy solutions for removal — pipes in particular. For a quick fix, turn exposed pipes into a metallic design feature. Highlight your pipes with a copper finish for a styled industrial look. If you already have copper pipes in place, this is simple enough. If not, it’s a matter of replacing existing exposed pipes with more attractive copper ones.


Transitional Bathroom, original photo on Houzz


3. Warm up a cool palette. Cool colors like grays and blues are often found throughout the home, especially in the bathroom. One of the easiest ways to add a warm glow to a cool or neutral color scheme is to introduce a warm metal like gold, brass or even rose gold.

The gold hardware and fixtures give a subtle warmth to the gray bathroom seen here, while still keeping the overall feeling serene.

If your bathroom lacks hardware or other metal decorative accents, look to your faucets as an opportunity to add a metallic.


4. Add depth to a small room. Small rooms, such as bathrooms or powder rooms, can easily take on a seemingly larger feel with metallic paint or paper on the walls. The glow of metallic walls makes the room feel a bit more expansive and jewel-box-like rather than small and dark.


Marcia Prentice Photography, original photo on Houzz


5. Pull together a collection. If you have several objects of the same type in a metal finish, display them together as a collection. This can create a shiny decorative feature that adds an unexpected element.


A perfect example is the copper pots in this kitchen. Hung together, they’re showcased sort of like jewelry. If just one copper pot had been hung among several dark or gray pans, it wouldn’t look styled or curated. Shiny objects like other shiny objects; together they create a shimmery decorative element.


6. Glam up the ordinary. You can also transform everyday items into more styled versions by adding a metallic accent. Try taking ordinary wooden shelves and pairing them with brass brackets for a rustic glam look.


Oliver Burns, original photo on Houzz


7. Brighten a dark space. Metallics are the perfect partner for dark color palettes, because they appropriately brighten the space while maintaining the overall muted vibe of the room.

This hallway has been brightened with a silver metallic wallpaper, chairs covered in bronze fabric and gold fixtures. All have a reflective quality that soothingly balances the darker elements — the rug and dark-framed mirror — while brightening the space just the right amount. Using white or flat pale gray elements instead of the metallics would have seemed discordant and too stark a contrast.


8. Anchor a space. Hanging a light in the center of a space, whether it’s a room or an open area, will certainly anchor that space — in other words, define or mark the boundaries of the space below it. Hanging a polished or colored metal light, in a room with few or no metallic accents, will even further define that space as well as add a glamorous accent. This works so well because metallics catch the eye. So a metallic light fixture will easily draw the eye up and create a dramatic triangle over the space below it.


9. Add a pop of neutral color. Sometimes a room feels flat or needs an update, but you just don’t want to change the overall color palette. Metallics are a fantastic way to add enhance a room’s design without adding an obvious color. When you add a dash of silver or gold, you’re adding texture and shine, bringing a glam and layered look to your space while keeping the integrity of the existing color palette.


Arrow. Land + Structures, original photo on Houzz


10. Give your exterior a durable accent. When it comes to sprucing up the outside of your home, consider going for something durable and stylish. A metal finish can be a bit more resilient than the painted wood or flimsy plastic accessories commonly used as outdoor home accents. It can also bring shine and color to architectural elements, as seen here on this charming Chicago brownstone.