Planted Tank Guru
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Contra Costa CA
If tanks and stands are different heights make the difference pretty obvious. A couple of tanks next to each other that are only an inch or two off look like "well, they almost match" :-(
But two tanks that are noticeably different sizes, look like "Hm, nice tanks, a big one and a small one" :-)
Similarly, if the lighting, decor and fish are almost the same, but not quite it is "near miss" :-(
But if they are distinctly different it is "Hey, neat, an African Rift tank and an Amazon tank" :-)
When possible the furniture should match. Or be really different, again, not an "almost matching".
Black stained or painted wood and black wrought iron have similarity (color) and difference (material) so could work together. Especially if the wood stand had the rustic/hardware showing (Simpson makes a series of cosmetic black brackets that would look great)
Cherry stained and Oak stained cabinets would not belong in the same room. Choose either the red or the gold, not both.