Choosing Colors for Rooms: 4 Tips to Help You Decide

Choosing colors for rooms doesn’t have to be overwhelming. To make it easier for you, I’ve put together four questions you should ask yourself when trying to choose colors that are right for your home. After each question, I’ve also included a few color ideas. These questions are just to get the ball rolling. You’ll also want to check out my post on Uncovering Your Design Style. The more you know about what you like, the easier it will be for you to make design choices that fit your lifestyle and personality.

Choosing Colors for Your Home

1 How are you going to be using the room?

  • Neutral colors are great for family rooms
  • Yellow is a cheerful, lively color that works well in kitchens
  • Reds are the most popular for dining rooms
  • Blues and soft tones are relaxing in bedrooms
  • Greens help to bring the outdoors in and can also be calming
  • Black and white add drama and elegance

Choosing Colors for Rooms: Cabinets painted in a cheery yellow brighten up a kitchen.

Better Homes and Gardens

2 What kind of atmosphere do you want to create in the room?

  • Calm and relaxing – cool blues, soft greens, aquas
  • Cheerful and energetic – yellow, orange (orange is very powerful, use with care)
  • Cozy and inviting – red, warm tones
  • Dramatic and elegant – black, purple, deep colors
  • Clean and crisp – white
  • Laid back and casual – neutrals, warm tones

Choosing Colors for Rooms: The soft blue on the walls is the perfect backdrop for creating a soothing and calming bedroom.

Better Homes and Gardens

3 How much natural light does the room get?

  • Almost no natural light – Whites and lighter colors will reflect whatever light is available.  Dark colors will absorb light and make the room feel even darker. 
  • Limited natural light – Yellows and cheerful colors will brighten things up. You can also use whites and lighters colors to reflect more light.
  • Lots of natural light – Blues, greens and deeper tones can be used liberally. Use reds to warm it up and make it feel cozy.

Choosing Colors for Rooms: Neutral colors in a family room are relaxed and casual.

Pottery Barn

4 What words would you use to describe your personality?

  • Relaxed – neutrals, green, blue
  • Sophisticated – deep purple, black & white
  • Cheerful – yellow, orange, bright colors
  • Romantic – pink, lavender, creams
  • Friendly – red, yellow

Choosing Colors for Rooms: This traditional dining room is decorated in the most popular color for dining rooms, red.

Martha Stewart

Choosing colors for your home doesn’t have to be scary. Asking yourself a few simple questions will help you to narrow your focus on colors that will work best for you and your home.

To help you even further, I created collections of the favorite colors of top designers. You’ll find some fabulous colors from which to choose!

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    enjoyed reading this article very much, I need to seriously start thinking the paint color I want to paint my basement this summer; this post has helped Peggy! (I might use natural colors)

  2. 7


    I’ms still here and writing new posts every week, Rosalie! Happy to answer your question. The door doesn’t have to match the trim; you can use an accent color on it. If you like the color it is now, then leave it as is and just do the trim. :)

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