September in COLOR: Find Balance in Neutral Rooms

August 30, 2021 3 min read

September in COLOR: Find Balance in Neutral Rooms

By Shannon Kaye, Color Marketing Manager
September 2021

Most people fall into one of 3 categories for why they choose neutral palettes for their homes...

  • They're looking to sell their house soon
  • They're a little afraid to choose colors
  • They just love the calm feeling a good neutral palette can bring.

Regardless of your approach, a successful neutral palette can give your home and the people who live there a sense of serenity and comfort in a chaotic world.

We love a good neutral palette and have hundreds of calm sophisticated tones to prove it! But to keep such a quiet color palette from becoming dare we say, plain and boring, you need to have a few design tricks up your sleeve.

Here are some gorgeous rooms we love and three design techniques you can use to take your neutral room to the next level:

Create Contrast

Sophistication KM4565, Broken White KMW47

KM4565 Sophistication     KMW47 Broken White        


1. Create contrast with light, medium, dark

Start with contrasting tones for the main surfaces such as floors, walls, countertops. Here the walls are painted light with colors like KM4565 Sophistication and KMW47 Broken White while the floor is a medium tone and countertop is dark. Then choose accent pieces in the strongest contrast, like the black chair, patio lights, and table frame in the image above.



Zebra Finch KM4934Sun God KM5183Snow Globe HLS4304Persian Bazaar KM4412

KM4934 Zebra Finch            

 HLS4304 Snow Globe       KM4412 Persian Bazaar     


2. Create contrast with color

Accentuating one or two key elements with your favorite color, gives the impression that your whole room is 'in color'. Choose an anchor piece like this island painted KM5183 Sun God or the inside of the glass cabinet, which here is painted KM4412 Persian Bazaar.

If that feels too 'permanent' look to colorful accessories, like the rug and fruit bowl, which can be changed out any time.


Show Off Your Shapes

           Feather Stone KM4578Seaweed Wrap KM4946Poodle Skirt Peach HLS4302

KM4578 Feather Stone         KM4946 Seaweed Wrap        HLS4302 Poodle Skirt Peach


1. Feature existing architectural elements

This deep dark porch creates contrast with the design tip we just mentioned- adding one great color. It also shows off the elegant arch with a deep contrasting neutral that draws the eyes into that gorgeous front door.


Ghost Town KM4579

KM4579 Ghost Town

2. Choose pieces that have beautiful shapes

If your space doesn't have a lot of interesting built in detail, choose furnishings or accent pieces with interesting lines and shapes. This industrial feels more inviting with curvy chairs and playful pendant lights.


Layer Texture and Pattern

KM5787 Parisian Cashmere

1. Add texture with natural elements

The straight lines of the pergola mimic the house's siding to create sense of place. Surrounding the area with plants and rustic stone balances the space with soft lines and contrasting texture.


Tungsten KM4572

KM4572 Tungsten 

2.  Mixing patterns creates a layered look

Adding a mix of patterns and textured materials creates a lived in look that feels inviting even when it's new. Notice the button tuck pattern on the sofa is echoed in the diamond pattern of the throw blanket. So good.



THE essential COLOR SET $12.99

To help you choose the best paint colors for your next neutral room, purchase THE essential COLOR SET, a fandeck with 100 of our most popular home colors with a range of white, tans, taupes, and grays we think you'll love.


Bare Pink KM4464Treasure Seeker KM5597Abbey Road KM4586 



 And for unique painting tips and DIY projects like this simple color blocking technique to define living and dining spaces, check out our How-To blog.



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