The ultimate guide to choosing the perfect finish for your home.


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The ultimate guide to choosing the perfect finish for your home.

By emily.bailey

Monday, March 15, 2021

Popular hardware finishes | Schlage

Here is an explanation of each of Schlage's 11 finishes, as well as suggestions of knob/lever and trims that go best with each.



Popular Hardware Finishes and Perfect pairings - Schlage
Are you thinking about updating your door hardware? Then choosing the right finish is probably on your mind and you know how important it is to get it just right. It’s not quite as simple as saying you want silver or gold – although that’s a good place to start – so we’ve created a guide to our 11 finishes, along with recommendations for the Schlage door hardware and other décor that goes best with them.

What is the most popular finish for door hardware?

Each of Schlage’s different finishes looks beautiful in the right home. Among the most popular right now, though, are those that pair well with the hottest trends in home décor. That includes Matte Black, Satin Brass and Polished Nickel. Schlage Matte Black is known for its versatility. Its dark tones are reminiscent of wrought-iron details, making it a great fit for traditional homes. At the same time, it can look boldly modern in a more contemporary home such as one with minimalist or monochromatic décor.


Finishes with more of a shine, including Schlage Polished Nickel, have seen their popularity rise with the rebirth of Art Deco and Hollywood Regency styles. Those interiors are known for their glitz and glam, but real gold, silver and crystal are out of the budget for most of us. That makes these bright finishes ideal for capturing the look even when you don’t have a Hollywood budget.


Keep reading to see these popular door hardware finishes in action and to find more options that just might help you create the perfect look for your home.

Bronze-to-black tones

Door hardware - Finishes - Aged Bronze - Schlage

Aged bronze

Aged Bronze is an ideal finish if you have a more traditional home, especially one with style based on the Victorian Era or Arts and Crafts movement. It coordinates especially well with Victorian colors, such as burnt sienna and mustard yellow. But how does it also look so beautiful in Craftsman-style homes? The varying shades of brown in the knob or lever will complement the natural wood floors and paint colors – browns, yellows, greens – typically found in Arts and Crafts.

Recommended pairings

Aged Bronze lends an air of luxury to the Siena knob with Wakefield trim or Avila lever with Addison trim.

Door hardware - Finishes - Matte Black - Schlage

Matte black

Like we said, Matte Black has never been more fashionable. It caters to a modern look that takes style cues from Bauhaus homes, known for their streamlined, straightforward aesthetics. It also draws from homes of the Colonial Era, when wrought iron fences and fixtures made by blacksmiths were common. We think you’ll love Matte Black door knobs or levers if your space has grey tones in the paint or fabrics, geometric patterns and large windows, which can help keep everything from feeling too dark and crowded.

Recommended pairings

Matte Black is a stylish and daring choice best suited for the Bowery knob or Broadway lever with Greenwich trim. One of our favorite pairings is also the glass Hobson knob with Collins trim.

Door hardware - Finishes - Oil-Rubbed Bronze - Schlage

Oil-rubbed bronze

The Oil-Rubbed Bronze finish is suited for a more specific look and feel than some of our other, more versatile finishes. This one blends seamlessly into Mediterranean and Tuscan settings. The dark brown tones in the hardware couldn’t look more authentic and stunning than when paired with warm colors like wine reds or a marigold yellow. Oil-Rubbed Bronze is also a “living finish” that changes over time to give it a constantly evolving presentation. It looks its best in homes with stone accents and ornate details. Like Aged Bronze, however, it would also fit right in with a Craftsman-style home.

Recommended pairings

The Oil-Rubbed Bronze finish works with several styles, but it looks particularly charming on the Siena knob or Flair lever with Camelot trim.

Gold tones

Door hardware - Finishes - Bright Brass - Schlage

Bright brass

Bright Brass is common in older, Colonial homes, and especially in homes styled in the 1990s. The widespread availability of Bright Brass makes it easy to find and, therefore, easy to match with other hardware, fixtures and accessories. This finish will fit effortlessly into almost any house.


If you’re looking for vintage style, this one is for you, too. Bright Brass can give you that golden glamour of Art Deco, so it wouldn’t feel out of place in a home with ornate chandeliers and elegant style.

Recommended pairings

Get the classic look by pairing your Bright Brass finish with the Bell knob or Flair lever with Camelot trim.

Door hardware - Finishes - Satin Brass - Schlage

Satin brass

Satin Brass can be considered the “modern brass alternative.” It’s becoming one of the most popular choices for the home, especially for people who love gold tones but shy away from the high shine of Bright Brass. We love pairing Satin Brass with dark surfaces, such as a forest green door or dark purple walls, like Graham & Brown’s 2021 Color of the Year, Epoch. Those darker colors really make the finish stand out.

Recommended pairings

Satin Brass looks particularly great on the Georgian knob or Accent lever with Camelot trim. For a more unexpected, but no less stunning, look, try the glass Alexandria knob with Alden trim.

Door hardware - Finishes - Antique Brass - Schlage

Antique brass

The Antique Brass finish closely resembles the look of natural brass and has a warm look due to its brown and golden tones. Though Antique Brass stems from the Victorian Era, its high-gloss finish gives it a touch of the modern world. It looks great on any house with stacked stone – think stone fireplaces – and exposed wood.

Recommended pairings

The Georgian knob with the elegant Brookshire trim or the Flair lever with Addison trim are often finished in Antique Brass for a sophisticated look.

Silver tones

Door hardware - Finishes - Bright Chrome - Schlage

Bright chrome

Bright Chrome is inspired by the Art Deco movement of the roaring 20s, but just as it did a century ago, it can also transition into a more modern, minimalist styling. The smooth, mirror-like finish coordinates well with neutral-colored doors and walls. With its high shine, you don’t want it competing with bright colors.

Recommended pairings

Bright Chrome is often seen on the contemporary Merano lever or the Latitude lever with Century trim.

Door hardware - Finishes - Satin Chrome - Schlage

Satin chrome

Satin Chrome has a contemporary look and feel, and does its best in simple, understated spaces. Because it doesn’t stand out too much and fits with most styles, it is typically used in commercial applications. Don’t be tricked into thinking it’s institutional, though. You might be surprised by how well it coordinates with reclaimed wood as well as stainless steel kitchen appliances and grey paint tones.

Recommended pairings

Satin Chrome feels fashion-forward when paired with the Orbit knob or Elan lever with Century trim.

Door hardware - Finishes - Polished Nickel - Schlage

Polished nickel

Made from solid nickel, the Polished Nickel finish was inspired by the sophistication of the Victorian Era. The lighting in a room can change its color and appearance, so it does best in bright spaces. You’ll want to pair it with other reflective surfaces and glass, which is why it’s popular for kitchen and bathroom fixtures. If the high shine feels a bit overwhelming, don’t be afraid to mix and match this finish with one that’s more muted or with more gold tones like brass or copper. The lacquered look of the Polished Nickel finish makes it one of the easiest to clean, too.

Recommended pairings

Polished Nickel looks expertly paired with the Sacramento lever or Bowery knob with Greyson trim.

Door Hardware - Finishes - Distressed Nickel - Schlage

Distressed nickel

Distressed Nickel has a rustic vibe that is reminiscent of the Old World, which is why it’s often paired with traditional knobs and levers. Today, the finish can increasingly be seen in urban lofts across the globe and industrial modern spaces. That’s why it’s best paired with reclaimed wood, concrete and exposed brick. Because Distressed Nickel is tumbled during manufacturing to get the look, no two pieces are exactly alike.

Recommended pairings

Distressed Nickel looks particularly stunning on the Georgian knob or Accent lever with Addison trim.

Door hardware - Finishes - Satin Nickel - Schlage

Satin nickel

Satin Nickel rose to popularity first with Victorian design and then with the Mid-Century Modern movement. The finish looks great against dark colors like black, navy blue or grey where it can stand out from its surroundings. You can also pair it with bold, geometric patterns, bright solid colors and edgy, unconventional furniture.

Recommended pairings

Satin Nickel is an excellent finish for almost any piece of Schlage hardware, but is often paired with more refined styles like the Bowery knob or Accent lever with Camelot trim.

Are you feeling inspired? Use our interactive Product Selector to find the right door hardware for your home. We also have more ideas and inspiration for you at Pinterest and Instagram.