Brown leather furniture complements numerous decorating styles, from traditional to modern. A neutral color, brown can be worked into a wide range of color palettes. Maybe the best part, though, is that leather is durable and easy to care for, so you don't have to worry about the color drastically changing with use.
"Of course there are multitudes of stain-resistant fabrics available for upholstered furnishings, but, nothing really stands up to the durability of leather," says interior designer Kara O'Connor of Kara O'Connor Interiors. "It's wipeable, making it a favorite choice for families with kids and pets. Leather is naturally hypoallergenic, also making it resistant to dust mites and pet dander."
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As with all kinds of furniture, brown leather sofas are not all created equal, so you've got plenty of sizes, shapes, and colors to choose from. When it comes to picking what works for you, consider the color palette and overall vibe you're going for. If you are in the market for a leather sofa, here are a few of our favorites. Or, if you have an old leather sofa that you've inherited and want to make it the centerpiece of a room, let it tell you how to decorate around it.
"When decorating with browns, it's important to first notice the undertone of the brown you are working with," O'Connor says. "Deep chocolate browns pair well with a variety of colors ranging from autumnal colors like reds, soft yellows, and deep greens. When working with a saddle-color brown leather, I like pairing mauves, pinks, and softer blues. With all brown tones, selecting a nice neutral for the walls will help to ensure your space doesn't feel too weighted down. Creams and standard whites, like Benjamin Moore White Dove, offer a lovely backdrop to a variety of brown tones."
For more inspiration, here are 15 colors that will pair beautifully with a brown leather sofa.
15 Colors That Work With a Brown Leather Sofa
There's a lot happening in this living room designed by Liz Caan Interiors, but it all works together. The brown leather sofa has a rustic, worn-in feel, while the cerulean walls and zebra-print chair give the space a modern and eclectic vibe. Opting for such a bright shade of paint on the walls draws your eyes up and around the room, which works especially well with large windows like these.
2. Hunter Green
Earth tones provide a beautiful backdrop for brown leather sofas. Muted shades of green appear natural and organic, providing a cool balance to warm brown. If you don't want to do an all-over green like in this room by Emily Gates Design, you can go for an accent wall behind the couch.
Let the particular shade of your brown leather sofa determine the shade of pink you choose to pair it with. This cognac sofa blends beautifully with the warm pink wall behind it. A cooler chocolate brown, meanwhile, would look lovely with mauve. If you want to make sure your brown leather sofa doesn't look too heavy and serious, pink is one easy way to add a little lightness and whimsy.
Metallic shades of gold, copper, and bronze on accent furniture add a luxurious feel to a brown leather couch. The lamp, table, and other metallic accents in this room by Morgan Farrow Interiors give the light brown leather a luxe look. They also tie into the exposed metal frame on the couch to make everything feel cohesive. Don't be afraid to mix metals — these silver picture frames look right at home next to gold.
Like pink, peach lightens up brown leather, keeping it from looking too serious. In this living room, the team at Regan Baker Design chose soft, sorbet-like colors to accent the neutral walls and sofa. The peach wall art, pillow, and ottoman give the space a sweet, summery vibe.
Neutrals will always work, no matter what the rest of the room contains. This room by Mrs. Paranjape Design is full of creamy neutrals, with a nice burst of color provided by the blue chairs. Even without that splash of color, the brown leather sofa would settle nicely against the cream walls and stools. The earthy palette makes for an inviting environment to kick your feet up in.
7. Royal Blue
How beautiful are the blue walls in this room by Ryan Saghian? The paint color is a blend of royal blue and teal that stands out behind the leather Chesterfield sofa. The blue blanket and chair keep the color integrated throughout the living space, while the marble floor and area rug ground the room.
8. Brick Red
Some leather sofas have a masculine feel, and you can play that up by choosing traditionally masculine design elements for the rest of the room as well. Exposed brick, stone, or industrial elements will give you that vibe, like in this room by Zoe Feldman Design. If you don't have bricks but want to mimic the red color palette, you can go for an accent wall in burgundy or terra cotta.
For a neutral room that still has contrast, bring warm and cool colors together. In this room by Lindye Galloway, almost everything — from the gray floors and curtains to the white walls and brown leather couch — is neutral, except for a subtle pop of blue. Still, there's enough contrast to provide visual interest. The chocolate color of the leather is just different enough from the wood shelves to stand out, too.
Black works beautifully with brown leather. In this room by Jennifer Barron Interiors, the black wall brings out the warmth of the sofa, while the sofa brightens up the wall. The patterned area rug and throw pillows tie the colors together and give the space a cozy, lived-in feel.
11. Light Blue
A light blue wall is already a bold choice, and a matching, patterned statement ceiling takes it to another level — literally. The cool blue in this living room by Tiffany Harris Design brings out the warmth of the chocolate brown leather sofa, while the rest of the accents — double coffee tables, framed vinyls, and a surfboard — make the room feel personal.
12. Mint Green
This orange-toned leather sofa looks cozy, but the real star of the room is the mint green chair. Mint and orange-brown, plus a gold lamp with a pink shade, are an unusual combo, but in this room, they look like they were made for each other. Each piece feels strategically picked for comfort and nostalgia.
For a monochromatic palette, consider various shades of cream, beige, tan, caramel, or mocha. You can add these into the room in various ways, whether through wall paint or through furniture, textiles, planters, frames, and artwork. Also consider combining light and dark shades for contrast.
Darker shades of brown, like espresso, contrast sharply with white walls. You can also add shades of gray to the color scheme. Including some brown elements in a grayscale palette — like the sofa, ladder-shelf, and ceiling beams in this room by Kate Marker Interiors — creates a modern rustic vibe.
Accentuate the warmth of brown leather with bold maroon. Whether you choose to incorporate the color through paint, throw pillows, or a rug, this deep shade of red will add an instant dose of drama to your space. In this room above, the patterned area rug breaks up the brown of the furniture and floors, while a large plant brings extra contrast.
How to Style a Brown Leather Sofa
- Use your sofa as a blank canvas for bold colors and prints
- Echo the warmth of brown leather with lamps and fixtures in warm metallic colors like gold, bronze, and brass, or add contrast with cool silver
- Keep it neutral with layered shades of cream, beige, tan, caramel, and brown
- Offset the masculine look of brown leather with accent colors like pink, mauve, and peach
- Create an earthy palette by adding colors like sage green, dusty blue, terra cotta, and rusty red
- Repeat the brown color of the sofa elsewhere in the room (through blinds or shutters, a coffee table, wall art, etc.) for a cohesive look
- If your flooring and other furniture is also brown, break up the monotone with a colorful rug
- If you want to add color without painting an entire room, try an accent wall behind your sofa
Colors That Go With a Brown Leather Sofa
The best colors to pair with your brown leather sofa really depend on the overall vibe you're hoping to create. You can't go wrong with pairing brown with other neutral shades, but if you want a bolder color, try shades of blue, or a warm color like maroon or peach. Here's a recap of some of our favorite colors to pair with a brown leather sofa:
- Hunter green
- Royal blue
- Brick red
- Light blue
- Mint green