Woods that Match Well with Natural Pine

Thoughts on wood species that pair well visually with Pine. October 1, 2010

Which of the hardwoods do you think would match best with natural pine? Alder? Poplar? Birch with a slight honey stain? Cherry may not be a good choice due to the darkening with time. Also, the character of oak seems to clash.

Forum Responses
(Furniture Making Forum)
From contributor K:
It's all in the eye of the beholder. Are you talking about SYP? SYP can have lots of heavy grain. A wood without the heavy grain could work, like maple. No contrast there, though. I myself prefer contrast, so I would go with a dark wood. What is the project? It depends how it's used and where it is used in the project. Is it the main wood or just for accent? I rarely stain anything but red oak, and then only once in a while.

From Professor Gene Wengert, Sawing and Drying Forum technical advisor:
Aspen poplar (not yellow poplar, also called tulip poplar) can look a lot like some of the pines. However, within the pines there are quite a few variations. For example, SYP is heavy grained, as mentioned. What pine do you want to match?

From contributor N:
Soft white maple with a light stain will look similar to most pines. It will finish with a smooth surface like pine.

From contributor P:
How about cypress?

From contributor R:
With heavy grain as mentioned, my choice would be white ash, with a honey stain.

From contributor L:
Cypress will look like yellow pine. Basswood can look similar to pine if you are going to stain it.