Mixing Painted Wood With Stained

January 22, 2013


Are you looking for ways to update your home’s stained trim and doors? Have you felt at a loss on how to work with your stained trim to refresh and update your home’s look?


Have you ever thought of painting your crown molding or baseboard white or cream and leaving your doors and windows stained?  I have seen quite a few beautiful rooms where both the stained trim and white painted trim are used together:


That room above is gorgeous, isn’t it? A modern, rustic look. It looks so cozy and comfortable as well as updated and fresh.


I think the new look may be the solution for a lot of homeowners that are tired of their stained look but do not want to paint all of the woodwork:

The most common combination of the two I see is a stained door and/or window with painted crown molding and/or baseboard:



Other creative ideas I have seen is painting the trim another color than white:


Or leaving just the door stained and painting everything else:


I think that dark stained doors work well with a painted trim, as long as the stain is consistent with the rest of the wood work in the room. For example, if you are mixing different wood materials (doors, beams)  the stain should be matched to look the same.


Do you have to repeat the same look throughout the home? If the rooms are open to each other, I would say yes, the baseboards, doors and crown moldings should be the same. If not, I would start with one room or a hallway and see how you like the look to determine if you want to continue in other rooms.


Do you like the look of the stained with the painted trim? Have you tried combining the two finishes in a room? I think we will be seeing a lot more rooms with the combination of the two!

I would like to thank Houzz for this amazing collection of pictures. Here is the link if you would like to see even more examples.

If you need decorating help in your home, contact me today.


  1. Kelly,
    What a great way to lighten up a space with lots of dark trim, without losing all the character of the stained wood – especially if the home is old and it still has original stained wood. I have an old house and all the doors and trim had been painted white, until the previous owner stripped the doors back to the original wood. The trim is all still white, and I think it looks great. Thanks for all the great photos to illustrate your point here!

  2. In the right context, this could be a great ‘in between’ possibility 🙂

  3. I saw it a lot when I lived in Toronto. There are lots of century homes that have woodwork throughout and homeowners would often paint the trim and leave doors and beams stained. It can be a very beautiful look. The only time I don’t love it is when there are too many wood colours trying to work together in the room. Great photos to illustrate the point Kelly.

  4. My living room has wood floors and ceilings. The doors, crown moldings, windows and fireplace are also stained. I am replacing the tile in my fireplace and would like to paint the fireplace off white. Will this look right with everything else stained?

  5. We’ve been in our house for 23+ years. Our baseboards, door frames and doors are stained. I would love to upgrade the doors to the (6) paneled style doors but don’t want to have to paint all my trim white. I’m wondering if I replaced the doors with an “off-white” ivory colored door and kept the stained trim, would this look okay?

  6. Do you have any photos of the painted trim meeting cabinet kick plates? Or in the 3rd photo where the bottom step trim meets the wall behind the small table. Not sure how to remodel these types of spots.

    • I do not have a picture Leann but I am pretty sure it is just a small molding piece that runs along the bottom to finish off the edge. Hope this helps!

  7. My kitchen and dinning room have the 90’s stained wood cabinets, crown molding, french doors, window, floor and wood inset in the dining room ceiling. I would like to add board and batten to just one wall of the dining room and paint it ivory but leave all of the other trim and wood in the room as is. The wall also meets with the hallway where the trim will remain stained. Will this look tacky or will it add special character? Would you recommend painting the baseboard on that one wall or leave the baseboard stained? Thanks, Carla

    • Hi Carla,

      I know it is not the answer you want to hear, but I want to be honest with you. I think adding white on one wall in the dining room, will not flow nicely with all of your stained trim and ceiling. I would instead embrace the wood trim and find paint colors that will make a statement and look Beautiful. Find a bold paint color you love for that one wall in the dining room and really make a wow with paint!

      • Thank you for the advise. I kept trying to figure out a way to make it work for the last year but kept hesitating because I couldn’t come up with a look that would complement the wood without painting all of the woodwork in the house.

        • I think you can make a fantastic wall using a dark paint color and hanging a great mirror or a gallery wall, etc. I had to work with the stained trim in my last home also. If you can’t change you just try to make it work another way.:)

Leave a Comment

Keep the conversation going! Your email address will not be published.