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Do you like decorating with color? Or do you prefer neutrals? I enjoy so many room types. I feel the beauty of rooms with mostly neutral tones and a serene organic look…and I also feel so happy when I see rooms with fun little pops of color…as well as rooms full of color!
Maybe you know you’re a tried-and-true neutral fan or a color-for-life fan. Or, maybe you’re like me and like BOTH, so which one should you choose for your own home?
The good news? You don’t have to choose! In my own home, I like to include color, but always strive for an overall sense of calm. I sometimes have a little more fun with color in certain rooms and then move on to a room with a calmer palette. I also give myself the freedom to change things according to my desires!
There really are no rules, so if you love the color but see your favorites on the “not to do list” in any given year, or someone says the style what you like the most will be a passing trend, don’t. to worry!
Ultimately, your style should be whatever YOU and your family love for your home.
If you’re like me and want to add more color to your home while keeping the overall feel simple and calm… here are some inspirational rooms along with my design observations and takeaway tips!
This room uses a lighter muted wall color with fun pops of color! The color was brought through the furniture with the cabinet painted sky blue and the fun chairs painted orange. Accents like a bouquet of cheerful sunflowers, green and white patterned pillows and chair cushions, and an orange blanket that wraps the room.
The use of neutral elements as well as the eclectic mix of baskets and pottery bring a feeling of natural calm. Whitewashed wood floors keep the whole space light and airy. The connected piece is a bright and bold blue, but with white panels underneath.
This space brings spring green with the muted green and white patterned wallpaper, dried hydrangeas, a pile of springy beach towels, and landscape artwork. Simple off-white wall trim and wooden floors keep the atmosphere calm. Natural texture was introduced with straw hats hanging from simple white hooks and the large woven basket! A little extra pop of color comes with a blue ribbon on one of the hats. I love how this simple touch pairs the color with the neutral texture. Adorable!
This cheery space uses white paneled walls with bright turquoise painted wood flooring. Braided rugs with colorful stripes, a cheery chest of drawers painted a similar color to the floors, rows of fun, colorful books, and a green and white patterned chair. The color has even been subtly introduced on the white bedding with a blue scalloped border.
This kitchen has been one of my favorites for a while now! I love the soft, understated blue/grey cabinetry – it adds a splash of color while keeping a distinguished, serene tone. Another trick for subtly adding color to a room is to incorporate warm metals! Notice the brass wall sconces, the copper pot and colander, the brass hardware and the lanterns. Greenery and a beautiful bright red flowerpot add cheer. The colorful patterns and accessories in the adjoining room make it an all-around living space that remains calm and comforting! HANDSOME!
You can certainly bring color with furniture, but for investment furniture, choosing neutrals can be a smart choice for flexibility and longevity. A neutral sofa has always seemed like a classic investment to me. My white slipcover sofa and leather arm sofa (above) have stood the test of time, we’ve had them for years! They made it easy for me to swap pillows or rugs when I want to switch up my look. A cheerful splash of color has been added with a less expensive piece (this tufted ottoman!) and of course the rug adds color and pattern.
If you just want to dip your toe into adding color, check out this kitchen. It’s mostly neutral, but they brought the same color repeated through blue upholstered bar stools, a blue painted island, and a blue accent backsplash behind the stove. There is even a touch of blue in the suspensions. You can certainly add more colors to this space if you wish, but repeating a few of the same color is an easy starting point!
A neutral backdrop can also give you complete flexibility to change your accent colors with the seasons! You can see some of the paint colors we used in our Craftsman home HERE, and more paint colors in our Seattle home HERE.
How do you use color in YOUR home? I’d love to see in our free Facebook community! You will be able to share your homes, like, decorating tips, and get inspired! Join us here.
I share more decorating tips in my books The Inspired Room, Simple Decorating, and “But Where Do I Put the Couch?” & Answers to 100 more home decor questions.
A calm house (while decorating with colors and patterns //// Dignified with a riot of colors //// Freshen up for spring: green and white //// My old laundry room with a green barn light
You’ll find plenty of inspiration in our galleries, I’ll share links to a few of the categories below:
Browse inspiration by color
Bedroom Inspiration Gallery
Kitchen Inspiration Gallery
How to Decorate: Find room-by-room inspiration (and browse posts in other categories)
Style advice (designer advice, style tips at home, how to find your inspired style, mood boards and more)
You can also search below for anything you’re looking for (just type in the box and click search!)