Espresso Color – What Is It and Why for Wood Furniture?

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Espresso is not just a popular morning beverage; it is also a common wood furniture color. If you want tables, cabinets, and chairs to look modern, chic, and bold, choose those with an espresso color. But what is espresso color, and why is espresso commonly used for furniture?

What is espresso color? Espresso color radiates reddish hues under direct lighting. It is similar to the color of dark coffee, from which its name was derived. The actual espresso hue of the furniture will be affected by the kind of lighting used. Its real color ranges between black and brown. Espresso is also sometimes mistaken for black because of its very dark brown hue. 

Why is wood furniture commonly finished in an espresso color? Furniture pieces look quite elegant when they have a deep, dark color. They also look neat as their dark color tends to conceal both dirt and grime. These are the reasons why most wooden pieces of furniture sold in the market have a deep dark brown color like espresso. 

Read on to learn more about what is espresso color and why espresso is commonly used as a finishing hue for wood furniture.

Also, take a look at an excellent piece of espresso-finished furniture, the Smuxee 31.5″ Round Coffee Table. This casual but elegant coffee table is durable and long-lasting – perfect for indoors or outside.

Click here to see it on Amazon.

Espresso Color – What Is It and Why for Wood Furniture?

Just think about the color of your favorite espresso coffee, and you will know what this color looks like. Its actual color is between dark brown and black. However, there are instances when espresso radiates hues of red if the furniture is under direct lighting.

So, what color is espresso? Espresso is actually a very dark brown color. It’s the reason why it is commonly mistaken for black. You’ll only see its true dark brown color if pieces of espresso furniture are under direct lighting. It is a deep dark brown color with warm undertones of red or gold.

The Kodiak Futons Phoenix Full Size Futon in Espresso Finish is a perfect example of such furniture:

Click here to see it on Amazon.

This futon is made of solid hardwood, 5% cotton, 42% leather, and 53% polyester. It also easily converts into a full-size bed without assembly required.

Espresso Is a Common Stain Used for Furniture

Espresso color in wood and furniture is a traditional and classic choice for many people. That is why a majority of wooden tables, chairs, sofas, cabinets, and shelves sold in the market up to this day have deep dark brown colors.

This color brings a touch of sensibility to your living room, dining room, and kitchen. It seems that espresso will never go out of style. In fact, espresso is a favorite color choice when it comes to refurbishing or remodeling furniture.

what color is espresso

Espresso Vs. Cappuccino

The term espresso was derived from a type of coffee called cappuccino in Italy. The word itself was borrowed from the 17th century Capuchin nuns and monks, who wore robes with red hoods. 

The Capuchin color is not really unique since its color is just red-brown. However, this term was used to call coffee beverages since they practically share the same color. Espresso, on the other hand, was considerably darker than red-brown and sometimes being mistakenly described as black.

The color of cappuccino is also traditionally used to stain furniture. Then eventually, espresso, a variant of cappuccino, was developed. Its deeper dark brown color became more popular than the original cappuccino color.

Color of Espresso

To revisit our earlier question, what color is espresso? Espresso emits shades of reddish hues under direct lighting. It looks like coffee in a cup with light creamer under direct light. Although its color lies between brown and black, it looks dark brown most of the time. Thus, it should not be regarded as pure black.

There are certain conditions when espresso sometimes looks black. If the furniture is placed in the washroom, the espresso-colored wood appears to look black. However, when placed in hallways and rooms where there is available sunlight, the brown tones and reddish hues of espresso will come out.

The Full-Size Cordova Espresso Frame is another example of espresso furniture that you can use in your guest room:

Click here to see it on Amazon.

It is a sofa that you can easily convert into a queen-size bed. Your guests will feel comfortable with its premium 7-inch innerspring modern futon spring. You can also add drawers in the frame for extra storage spaces.

Espresso Comes In Varying Shades

There are other names for espresso because of its varying shades. Sometimes, it is called chocolate or mocha. Manufacturers of paints and stains also have their own unique version of espresso. However, the basic hue of the color remains the same – the deep brown color that feels warm and cozy while still looking clean and contemporary.

In the furniture business, some pieces are described as black when they are really espresso wood furniture. In fact, espresso furniture is more common than black furniture. Lighting plays a significant part in display rooms on how the real espresso color is perceived.

The warmth of espresso comes mainly from its natural chocolate hues. Under direct lighting, the color radiates reddish hues. However, in any kind of light, it will always look like deep dark coffee with some traces of cream.

Benefits of Using an Espresso Color Finish for Furniture

The dark color of espresso has many benefits when used as a furniture color. Here are seven of the key benefits of an espresso stain or finish for furniture:

1. It Is a Neutral Color

Since espresso is a neutral color, it is very versatile. That means you can pair it with any kind of color scheme in your home. There is no difficulty in choosing colors that will match with espresso.

2. Espresso Is Practical and Convenient

Dirt and grime are not very noticeable in espresso furniture. This color hides the presence of dirt and grime, which are easily seen in light-colored furniture. That means espresso furniture will always look clean and tidy.

3. Espresso Is an Elegant Color

This color has been the standard color of classic furniture. The espresso stain makes furniture look classy and elegant.

4. It Can Balance the Color Scheme

Espresso can help in balancing the color scheme in a room. If black is too heavy, espresso can provide a lighter shade that will blend and balance other colors in the room.

5. Espresso Belongs to the Noble Colors

Espresso furniture has great decorative value because of the meaning of its color. It is a noble color that doesn’t require any additional décor.

6. Espresso Can Provide Balance

Espresso can provide a balancing element if you pair it with bolder and brighter colors.

7. Espresso Makes People Feel Cozy

Espresso is an edible color. It means that it has the color of chocolate and other sweet treats, which can impart a soothing effect. That’s why espresso-colored sofas are an excellent place to sit and relax after a hard day’s work.

color of espresso furniture

How to Use Espresso Color to Enhance the Ambiance

We’ve answered the question, ‘what color is espresso,’ now, let’s look at how to use and pair espresso wood furniture in your home. Espresso color can enhance a room’s ambiance in many ways. Below are four key ways to use espresso color in your home.

1. Use Dark Shades

If you want a room to be serene and peaceful, you can combine espresso furniture with deep or dark-colored floors. For example, a deep blue slate flooring with a rich espresso sofa will create an attractive color palate for a moody retreat.

2. Use a Monochromatic Color Scheme

If the space is small, espresso furniture tends to be more on the black side instead of brown. To create an intimate and cozy ambiance, bring out the monochromatic colors of espresso. Paint the walls and cabinets with different shades of espresso.

3. Add Cream and Ivory Colors

Mix espresso with cream and ivory. This classic minimalist combination will add warmth and elegance to the room.

4. Style with Gray Furniture

Combine espresso with gray. This combination will radiate warmth and serenity to any room. If you want a space in your home that you can use for solitude and peace, put in espresso furniture and partner it with some gray fixtures.

Types of Wood That Will Look Good with Espresso Color

Certain types of wood can look better when they are stained by espresso color. Similarly, these types of wood will also make espresso look better. Below, let’s look at espresso color wood or wood that looks great when finished with an espresso color.

1. Hard Maple

The best espresso stains are created in hard maple wood. Maple has just the right fiber density and color that can soak the espresso stain. The result is a rich stain that optimizes the espresso color.

Maple is lighter in color, which is why it is more accepting of the espresso stain. This color contrast makes maple the best wood for espresso stains.

2. Red Oak

Red oak has a natural vibrancy, but its grain is only slightly visible. Although staining this wood with espresso will make it a bit duller, the added color will give a unique look that many designers and homeowners want. When red oak is stained with espresso, the wood will have red overtones.

3. Cherry

Cherry is already dark but has a built-in luminosity. Staining it with espresso color makes it even plainer. But some homeowners want a simplistic look in wood that does not have visible grains. These types of wood are most compatible with modern designs.

See the below video for finishing espresso wood furniture:

Espresso Furniture for Your Home and Office

I’ve mentioned two excellent pieces of espresso colored furniture earlier. Now, I’ll list a few other espresso furniture favorites of mine that are available on Amazon. These pieces can greatly complement and enhance the style and elegance of your home.

1. Tiophome Piece Wood Counter Height Dining Table 6 with Storage Shelf

Click here to see this table on Amazon.

The Tiophome 6-Piece Wood Counter Height Dining Table Set with Storage Shelf offers a versatile and inviting space for dining. Here are the key features:

  • Counter Height 6-Piece Dining Set: The dining set features a farmhouse-style counter-height dining table with clean lines, providing ample seating for a large family. It includes 4 dining chairs and a bench, offering flexibility in arranging your space to suit your preferences.
  • Storage Shelf Design: The set comes with a built-in functional storage shelf under the tabletop. This shelf provides a practical solution for organizing and storing items such as dishes, books, and other essentials, keeping them within easy reach.
  • Long-lasting Solid Rubberwood: Crafted from solid rubberwood and premium MDF with acacia veneer, the dining set is designed for durability and longevity. The solid wood legs and long stretcher under the tabletop contribute to the set’s stability and functionality.
  • Multifunctional Bench & Chair: The bench serves a dual purpose, functioning not only as a dining bench but also as a shoe bench in your entryway, adding versatility to your home. The chairs are also suitable for a home minibar, making the set adaptable to various spaces.
  • Dimensions and Warranty: The dining table dimensions are 60x30x36 inches (L x W x H), dining chair dimensions are 19.5×17.3×40 inches (L x W x H), seat to ground height is 25.3 inches, and the dining bench dimensions are 39x16x24.6 inches (L x W x H). The set comes in 2 boxes, and a 12-month warranty is provided. Please note that the product’s color may slightly differ from the photo due to lighting or monitor display.

2. FANYE 5-Piece Counter Height Kitchen

Click here to see this table and chair set on Amazon.

The FANYE 5-Piece Counter Height Kitchen & Dining Room Dinette Furniture Sets is designed for contemporary style, quality, family use, and superior comfort. Here are the key features:

  • Contemporary Style: The dining set features a simplistic modern design with a sleek silhouette, finished in a warm espresso lacquer. It is refreshingly minimal and neutral, making it a versatile addition to your dining room, kitchen area, or home bistro. The accent wood grain detailing and gray burlap seating add a touch of sophistication.
  • Manufactured for Quality: Unlike other MDF-manufactured dining sets, this set’s frame and legs are crafted from 100% premium rubber wood for durability. The tabletop and hidden 2-tier shelving underneath are made from wood slabs with a resistant veneer to prevent wear and erosion from daily use. The base rubber pads attached to the legs help maintain balance and protect your flooring.
  • Perfect for Family Use: The dining set includes a table and four matching chairs, offering a functional and compact design that comfortably fits in small spaces while accommodating your family. The hidden bottom shelf provides extra storage space for keeping the tabletop clutter-free.
  • Superior Comfort: The wood chair set is designed for enhanced seating comfort, featuring a durable construction with thick wooden rails on the backrest. The chairs have a curved backrest and cone-shaped legs for both comfort and style. Each chair is reinforced with four spindles for stability and offers a place to prop your feet.
  • Assembly & Dimensions: The set is easy to assemble with clear manual instructions included. The table dimensions are 35.4”L x 35.4”W x 36.2”H, and the chair dimensions are 17.5”L x 22”W x 39.2”H. The tabletop has a weight capacity of 300 lbs, and the shelf has a weight capacity of 50 lbs.

3. Smuxee 31.5″ Round Coffee Table

Click here to see it on Amazon.

The Smuxee 31.5″ Round Coffee Table is designed with an industrial style, featuring a double layer design for ample storage space. Here are the key features:

  • Industrial Style Design: The coffee table boasts an industrial chic style that complements various décor styles. Its versatile design makes it suitable for holding items like coffee and books while adding a decorative touch to your space.
  • Double Layer Design: With dimensions of 31.5″L x 19.6″H, the coffee table features a 31.5″ wide table top and lower metal shelves, providing you with extra storage space for books, toys, snacks, and more. The double-layer design helps keep your home organized and tidy.
  • Stable and Durable: The coffee table is constructed with a wood-patterned table top and metal mesh partition, forming two layers of storage. The metal bracket adds durability and stability to the table, ensuring long-term use. The rust-proof effect contributes to the table’s beauty and longevity.
  • Large Usable Space: The two-tiered round design maximizes usable space in a smaller area, making it an ideal furniture choice. Whether placed in the living room, office, study, or reception room, it serves as a practical and stylish circular coffee table or sofa table.
  • Easy to Install: The package includes clear and complete installation instructions, making it easy for you to install the coffee table. With minimal time and effort, you can have a functional and beautiful round wooden coffee table in your space.

4. East West Furniture VAC-ESP Vancouver Dining Chairs

Click here to see these chairs on Amazon.

These espresso chairs have a stylish design, comfortable linen fabric seat, and sturdy structure. They are made of strong rubberwood, which can last for years. These chairs will also enhance the charm of your dining room with their classic design.

They have stylish legs and vertically slatted backs that will provide a comfortable sitting experience and ample support to your back. Asian solid wood or rubberwood is very durable. The espresso finish for these espresso color wood chairs enhances the grains and natural color.

5. Pergola 2-Drawer File Cabinet in Espresso and Chestnut

Click here to see this cabinet on Amazon.

This beautiful piece of espresso-stained furniture is a lateral filing cabinet made of poplar wood. This wood espresso cabinet would be an excellent addition to your office décor. The cabinet comes with an anti-tip mechanism that makes it stable, sturdy, and safe. It has a two-tone finish of espresso and chestnut, enhancing its style and elegance.

The drawers are lined with felt. They also have English dovetail and French dovetail structures. This cabinet has a weight limit of 200 pounds. Also, there is no assembly required, as it will be delivered completely assembled in a box.

Conclusion – Espresso Color

So, to recap, what is espresso color? Why is espresso such as common finish used for wood furniture? The espresso color is similar to the color of dark coffee with reddish hues under direct lighting. Its real color varies between dark brown and black. Sometimes, espresso is even mistaken for full black because of its very dark brown hue.

Different types of furniture with deep, dark colors look classy and elegant. Dark stains in wood, like espresso, also help in concealing dirt and grime in these pieces of furniture. That is why many pieces of wooden furniture in the market have dark colors like espresso.

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