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