Adding Colorful Home Decor to a Room
Feb 11, 2019
One of the biggest style trends of the moment is color, color, and more color. Rich hues, saturated pigments, and bold jewel tones have burst onto the scene in a big way. After years of gray-and-white minimalism dominating interior decorating for the last few years, this new color boom is an exciting time for design. A brave color choice is one of the quickest and most effective ways to add visual interest to your interior design. But where do you start?
How to Add Colorful Home Decor to a Room
It doesn’t mean you need to totally ditch the neutrals that have been serving you so well. You can balance them out with just a few pops of color. When you consider switching up your color game, the first thing that comes to mind is usually a trip to the paint store. While that’s a valid option (and we think you can never hoard too many paint chips: so inspiring!) it is a huge amount of work and a bit of a commitment.
If you’re still easing your way into the home renovation projects, we think that there are some simpler, less labor-intensive ways to add color to a room without having to break out your masking tape and drop cloths. If you’re craving colorful home decor and need a little help to get started, check out these easy-to-implement ideas.
Add pillows and throws
Soft accessories and textiles are a classic way to give your room a color injection. That’s because it’s such a fun, low-effort fix and something you can change up as often as you like.
Cushion covers and throw pillows are available at all kinds of price points and in a rainbow of colors and prints. If you’re crafty you can even make your own: it’s such a simple project. Throws and blankets are another way to up the color quotient in the room, while also adding interesting textures and an extra bit of cozy comfort, too.
With the current trend for all things artisan and retro, hand-knit or crocheted blankets are having a shining moment. If you don’t know a knitting needle from a crochet hook, keep an eye out at estate sales and thrift stores: you might get lucky with some ‘70s-fabulous afghans.
Choose or create a piece of statement furniture
If you want a bigger change than a new batch of cushions can provide, think about investing in a showstopper piece of furniture. Maybe it’s a brand new couch in your favorite color, or maybe it’s time to reupholster a faded armchair in a brilliant, exciting fabric. A really colorful piece of statement furniture can become a focal point and anchor the rest of your design, allowing you to layer more color from there.
Not ready to overhaul your sofa quite yet? A lower-budget option is to add a lick of paint or lacquer in a bold shade to brighten up an old wooden side table or stool, something you already have or a piece you’ve picked up at a yard sale.
Refresh your curtains or shades
Another textile-based color solution is to choose some new curtains, shades or blinds. Conventional wisdom often advises homeowners to stick to simple neutrals for window treatments, but they’re a natural place to add an impressive punch of color. Think bold primaries in thick, sumptuous fabrics: maybe a deep indigo blue or vivid mustard. Saturated reds of all shades are perfect for a colorful moment and would look incredible as floor-length drapes.
If you’re not sure you want to invest in all new curtains, there’s a quick and affordable shortcut available to anyone with a sewing machine and the ability to sew a straight line. Try adding a bold border to your existing neutral drapes. You’ll gain an immediate color infusion for the cost of a couple of rolls of ribbon.
If you’re wondering how to incorporate color into your living room or bedroom in 60 seconds flat, here’s your answer. Adding framed art creates an instant focal point and if you choose something with strong, exciting colors, you’ll immediately energize the whole space. Bold, oversized pieces are taking over, a departure from the longstanding “gallery wall” approach.
If “art” sounds intimidating and don’t want to spend a huge amount, don’t stress. You don’t need to visit a gallery or auction house. Just frame a splashy wallpaper panel or fabric remnant, hang it up and stand back.
Looking for something a little different? Tapestries are big right now and can be sourced almost anywhere. For something one-of-a-kind, it might be time to go digging in the attic. That ‘70s vibe we have happening now means that Mom’s old macramé is suddenly cool again. Weekend weaving workshops (say that three times fast) are popping up all over the place, so if you want to make your own colorful textile masterpiece, why not sign up?
Go beyond metal and clear glass: lamps and lighting fixtures are a beautiful and effective way to work in a little extra color. For example, a pair of zingy orange ceramic lamps will add a jolt of energy to any room. If you’re happy with your lamps but still want to push the boundaries, why not try out a new lampshade? Simple fabric or paper shades can totally transform the look of a lighting fixture and the whole room. Nestled onto a bedside table or hanging from the ceiling, the right light can brighten up your living space in more ways than one.
Paint or wallpaper the inside of your bookcases
If you’re wondering how to add accent colors to a room in an unexpected and understated way, this hack is for you. Style your shelves by adding some interest inside your bookcase. It’s much easier than painting a whole wall but offers maximum impact. You can choose one great shade, or go for contrast with a few curated colors.
If you’re going for a bit of a boho look, you can even mix and match paint and wallpaper patterns for a charming and eclectic finish. You can also give contact paper, self-adhesive vinyl wallpaper a try. It’s so simple to apply; you can give your bookcase a makeover in minutes. While there are plenty of chic, modern contact papers on the market these days, for those who aren’t afraid of a little kitsch factor, you can there are some cute vintage rolls still hanging around online marketplaces.
Don’t be afraid to choose something really bright and eye-catching, as you’ll only get peeks of it above the books and behind your knickknacks.
Invest in new carpets or rugs
Your floor occupies a large visual space in any room, which offers you the opportunity for big impact. If you’ve been thinking about replacing your carpet, why not get a little brave with your color choice? The trend for saturated color extends to floors -- and it’s just getting started.
For the truly intrepid, bold, bright patterned carpets is the way forward. If you’re not in the market for a whole new carpet just yet, or if you’re not completely sure how much floor color you can live with, there are options. Carpet tiles are growing in popularity. They’re easy to put down, and easy to replace, and you can even mix-and-match for a fun color-blocked effect. For those with hardwood or tile floors, area rugs are another quick, low-commitment way to add extra interest to your floor space. The right rug can be a shot of instant color and really tie the room together.
Learn more about our Flooring America carpeting options and brands.
Paint a Door
Choosing a new, bright paint color for your front entrance door can give the whole house a shot of vibrancy. It announces your intention to lead a colorful life to the whole neighborhood and sets the tone for what they’ll find inside. The same philosophy holds true for interior doors: why stick with plain white or wood when you can create an exciting transition from one room to the next with just a little paint? It’s less work than repainting a whole room, and may have an arguably bigger impact on how the space feels.
Green counts as a color, and houseplants add a breath of life into any room. Bonus points for colorful blossoms, too. Whether you choose a large potted tree to liven up your living room, a little row of African violets in the kitchen, or a rack of ferns in the bathroom (they love the moisture), bringing nature inside is an instant color upgrade.
If you’ve got a black thumb, never fear. Fake foliage is here, and these fabulous fakes are better than ever. Often, you get what you pay for with artificial plants, but now and then you’ll get lucky: everyone’s favorite Swedish big box store has been doing some pretty impressive and affordable faux greenery lately.
Another tip: fake plants tend to look their best in places where live plants would struggle: think dark corners and high shelves which are tough to reach for watering. Finally, if you don’t want to commit to plant care or a regular plastic-plant-dusting routine, a bouquet of fresh flowers is the ultimate low-stakes pop of color for any room.
Color can be an intimidating subject for a lot of homeowners. It certainly feels safer to stick with quiet, muted tones that can’t clash with each other. If that’s your style, own it! Color is color. But if you’ve been craving something a little more intense, now’s your time. Don’t worry too much about what’s on trend or what “goes together”. Have fun, be playful, and let yourself explore whatever colors make you happy. Experiment with colors and styles with My Design Finder to see what tickles your fancy. Now, get out there and get colorful!