It might have been the rich red colour, the quality craftsmanship or the historical features that first attracted you to solid mahogany desks as the perfect finishing touch to your office. Whatever you were drawn to, once you have it you'll want to show it off.
Luckily, there are plenty of decorating tricks that ensure your new purchase will be displayed to its best effect. Read on to find out more.
Taking a home study as our example, desks, bookcases and chairs in this timber are instantly recognisable by their warm tone and deep red shade. Alongside the unusual colour, the other thing that makes mahogany stand out from other woods is its strength and durability, which can mean furniture made from it is something of an investment that will last for many years to come.
However, the striking colour teamed with the long life shouldn't make you feel as though you are locked into having one decorative scheme for your office for the foreseeable future, as mahogany is actually surprisingly versatile. Of course, the failsafe option is white, but even here there are many shades to choose from. Pure white will give your office a light and airy feel, while a creamy shade will allow your furniture to act as the main focal point while creating a clean and crisp space in which to work.
Yet there are far more colours to choose from that go well with mahogany, so don't stick to a neutral palette if you don't want to. Quality wooden furniture is often crafted to look like a style popular in years gone by, so purchasing a piece can give you a good excuse to go for a vintage design in your study.
With this in mind, don't shy away from selecting red for your walls. Although mahogany has a crimson tone, there's no risk of clashing if you place it in a room that has been painted a glorious wine shade. Indeed, the two tones will complement each other perfectly, and give the space a Victorian feel.
Other palettes that work well with mahogany include basil green, dash purple and peacock blue, but steer clear of yellow.
Mahogany often comes with a high shine finish, which adds light to a room and ensures the eye is always drawn to the stunning furniture. However, you should avoid also picking glossy paint and wallpaper, as this could potentially be overkill - particularly in a more confined space like a study.
There are plenty of flat paints available in all colours, so you can decorate your walls with a matt finish, which allows the shine of your furniture to really catch the attention of visitors. Satin is another option, which contains a hint of gloss but not so much that the finished room is overpowering.
When decorating a room, you should always consider all the elements, from the lighting and the permanent features, such as coving and skirting boards, to the movable objects like furniture.
Contrast is a great way of highlighting some things and drawing attention away from others.
Mahogany looks great in pale-coloured rooms, as it really displays the best qualities of this dark timber. Another benefit is that light rooms tend to appear larger and more airy, although you should carefully arrange your furniture so it doesn't look cluttered. Low contrast can still be a great option, though, and is more subtle, but take care to select something that works well against the reddish undertones of the mahogany.