Warning: You'll be picking up the paint brush after this.
It's one thing to fall in love with a paint color in a photo. It's another to put it into action. Here to help, these designers take the guesswork out of picking the perfect paint to make styling your home easier than ever.
Experimenting with deeper, darker shades can be intimidating, but a rich, complex blue can make even small spaces feel vibrant and full of life (especially better than dingy whites can). "The only colors I think people should paint their walls are blue, white, black, or pink," says designer Mat Sanders of Consort Design. "Think of them as neutrals."
Taupe is a popular color, but designer Abby Wolf-Weiss specifically recommends pale taupe for its unmatched versatility. "Find one with hints of grays and pinks in it," she advises, "which flatters any room and any person." A shade like Behr Marquee Ballerina Beauty (MQ3-08) needs just one coat application for expert, uniform coverage.
White's flattering cousin is another favorite color of Wolf-Weiss: "I used cream for the living room walls of a woman looking for some glamour," she says. "The color brought the room to the next level – and will do the same to any other room in need of a similar luxurious update."
Try this move ASAP: "I love to use powder blue in a high-gloss finish on the ceiling, with a creamy white wall in eggshell," says Sarah Magness of Magness Design. "The combination creates drama without overpowering the furnishings." Who can resist a sky-blue ceiling?
Neither overtly gray nor green, this soft, sage-like color is a go-to for Karen Vidal of Design Vidal, who painted the back wall of these plaster open shelves to offset the display of white ceramic pieces. The color itself is "rich, but not overpowering," she says, "and balances well with the dark wooden mousharabi doors below."
"Grays work for anyone who doesn't want white paint but likes a neutral, clean color for the walls," says Laurel & Wolf designer Kimberly Winthrop. "Behr Marquee Statuesque (MQ3-23) looks great in almost every space – it's not too blue, it's not too brown. It's just right." The grays in the Behr Marquee line create a chic, pristine impact after only one coat application, and they're also easy to keep spotlessly clean.
This neutral brings out any understated furnishings in the most flattering way. "My go-to color is a warm, smoky taupe," says Tom Stringer of Tom Stringer Design Partners. "It's a universal color for both traditional and contemporary interiors, and a great foil for light neutrals and cool grays."
Stylish and comforting, soft grays not only work beautifully on walls, but also on trims and crownings around the room. "It adds a slight hint of color, but it's still neutral enough to complement the rest of the space," according to Laurel & Wolf designer Jessica Today. Just don't forget your pops of color!