Oh, the task of choosing a living room paint color! Often the room where you spend the most time, the living room should be welcoming and soothing, while at the same time make a lasting impression. How do you find a color that prevents the room from being ordinary, yet one that doesn’t come on too strong? We’ll let you in on a little secret: there’s no right answer!
That’s right — the color that works for you may be far from ideal for someone else. Choose a color you truly love, as well as one that complements your decor. If you’re about to purchase new furnishings and artwork, your options may be broadened since you can pick the paint first and then select decor that fits with the color scheme. However you arrive at the living room of your dreams, know that there’s power in color. Try these options on for size!:
Choose a Bold Living Room Color
One approach to living room color is to go bold. There’s nothing like a vivid room. Take the orange space below, designed by Christian Leone. A bright orange hue works well with black and white pieces, not to mention items in a complementary shade of blue. [from Lonny]
A fabulous design choice that highlights vivid walls is to fill the room with retro eclectic decor. The green room below in the next featured space is a hodgepodge of styles, with a strong Mid-Century slant. As you can see, bright paint adds to the funky effect. [from Interior Result]
Or go for the unexpected. In the room below designed by Angie Hranowsky, intense powder blue walls are contrasted with berry-toned decor, such as a tufted sofa. Now that’s a unique color combination! [from Lonny]
Another way to make walls stand out is to downplay the color in the rest of the space. For example, a teal green room can be accented with black and white decor. When furnishings are neutral, the walls stand out all the more. Note how the deep golden hue on the coffee table bowl and lamp shades pops against the cool-toned paint, without fighting the impact of the wall color. [from Room Envy]
Dress Up a Soft Color With Vivid Accents
Sometimes soft and chic wins the race! Below we see a buttermilk room and a gray Henry Sofa from West Elm. These are not crazy color decisions, but the accent pieces pack a powerful punch. Bold hues on the painting, pillow and books really stand out against the room’s neutral palette.
Or go even bolder with bright seating and window treatments. In the next featured space, we see how a light ice blue room is catapulted to va-va-voom status with striking orange decor. [from Burnham Design]
Sometimes all you need is one vivid piece! In the room below, a deep blue Chester Tufted Upholstered Sofa steals the show, declaring its awesomeness against a subtle cream and white color palette. [from West Elm]
At other times, more is more! The city slicker hot pink side table from CB2 isn’t the only colorful accent in the next image. The gray wall paint and sofa are the perfect backdrop to the citrus and magenta decor, including a geometric rug and fire-orange blanket. Because sometimes you have to go all out…
Match the Living Room Paint Color to Your Seating
Here’s a seemingly obvious yet unconventional idea: match your living room walls to your couch. Really. An unusual choice, it can be surprisingly harmonious, as shown in the peach living room below. [from M. Design Interiors]
In this next space, mint green is the color of choice for half of the seating. Yet an orange armchair pops against the refreshing wall color. As it turns out, for some rooms, mix and match is the way to go. [from Mark English Architects via Houzz]
When you match a neutral paint color to neutral seating, the stage is set for bold artwork to make a statement. Below we see the Blake Sofa from West Elm, nicely offset by truly memorable paintings.
Does your living room need to have dynamically colorful accents? No! There’s no rule that claims neutral shades must be accompanied by standout hues. Sometimes repetition is a statement in itself. For example, the tetra slate loveseat from CB2 is powerfully present in a slate gray space:
Go With a Decorative Painting Strategy
Decorative painting, you say? Isn’t that reserved for the professionals? Not always! Hand-painted stripes are easy to create with the help of painter’s tape. The results can be quite interesting, especially when tone-on-tone paint is selected. Powder blue, anyone? [from KannCept Design, Inc. via Houzz]
Here’s another ode to horizontal stripes, this time in black and white. Create lines from floor to ceiling and watch as an accent wall becomes a conversation piece. [from Decor Pad]
If you have a chair rail or another mid-wall divider, try two-toned walls. They add character to a space and create an out-of-the-ordinary backdrop for beautiful decor. [from Burnham Design via Houzz]
Interested in going fancy? Try a specialty effect, such as the leather painting technique shown below. Decorative painting strategies can add texture and depth to a room, creating a one-of-a-kind feel. [from Riehl Designs, Inc. via Houzz]
For an extra special touch, achieve a decorative effect with wall-mounted accents, like the pink painted birds in flight, shown in the next space. Their eye-catching color is mirrored in the sofa’s bright pillows. [from Creative Influences]
Let the Glow of Another Room Complement Your Space
Sometimes your living room walls may not be the surfaces that need to stand out. Let walls of an adjacent room make a big statement, as shown below in a space designed by Rafael de Cardenas. Who needs jewel-toned living room paint when a hot pink wall in the next room can inspire an entire space full of rich decor? [from Architecture at Large]
See the light gray walls of the living room in the next space? See the soft peachy glow in the doorway of the adjacent room? See how this glow is heightened by the peach rose in the framed artwork over the couch? The room below designed by Caroline Robert shows why matching your paintings to the walls of a nearby room is a great decorative trick! [from Lonny]
We end with a black and white living room motif inspired by the stripes of the dining room, which can be seen through the doorway. This space designed by Colleen Locke is a perfect example of a color scheme that continues from room to room. [from Lonny]
Isn’t it nice to know there are options? Seriously! Whether you’re ready to repaint the entire room, jazz up your space using the current color or make a big impact with an accent wall, you can create an unforgettable living room using an option that works for you. One tip: let your decor help you decide! Look at the items you’ve purchased over the years. Their color may give you a hint about the hues that delight you.