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Wood with white or light furniture. These colors really bounce against the deep wood paneling, creating a feel both modern and clean. Yes, I know all of you with kids and pets are writhing. However, furniture in creams and whites can be functional if you go the slipcover route vs. typical upholstery.
Introduce bold pops of color. Notice how this arrangement includes three dark furnishings: two chairs and an ottoman, yet it feels incredibly bright due to the colorful rug, throw pillows and draperies.
Don’t forget to look up – and down. If your ceiling and base moldings are dark, especially with wood paneled walls and deep flooring, brighten things up with white or cream colors for both.
Let in the light. If there is anyway to maximize natural light, do it. Rid your windows of heavy drapery or blinds so the sunlight can spill in. Larger windows and skylights make a huge difference.