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How to select natural colours for your home


When selecting natural paint colours to match your beige fabric wingback chair, you may be concerned that the overall effect will be too bland.  There is a skill in selecting natural colours in a way that will look comfortable and stylish.

The good news is that neutral colours are often the building blocks of some of the best interior design.  It can create a calm feel to a room, which can form the foundation for bolder choices elsewhere.  Selecting the perfect natural colours will first reflect your style but must also respond to the light in your home.  Responding to such nuances will have a transformative impact on your room, making them feel spacious and inviting – and therefore, homely.

Traditional neutrals

The timeless combination of everyday neutrals is best seen in classical interiors and will look as if they have been there forever.  You will feel an overwhelming sense of calm in this environment, with its grey-green undertone.  These traditional neutrals are perfect for rooms looking out into the garden, as they create a connection between inside and outside your home.

You can choose to layer traditional neutrals with white paint and wooden floors, with stripped back woodwork to get the best out of the room.  If you want to add to the sense of space, use satin paint on the ceiling as the light will reflect and draw your eyes upwards.

You would choose traditional neutrals if you were seeking a relaxing effect.

Red-based neutrals

Maybe the cool tones of traditional neutral colours may leave you feeling cold.  You may want the warming effect of pinkish-red undertones instead.  If you have a room that gets little light, then you can bring some much-needed cosiness with the use of these neutral colours.  They are also the perfect partner for organic materials such as linen, wood and stone.  If you have only the slightest hint of pink in the paint, making it more off-white can create an almost halo effect in your home.

Yellow-based neutrals

Yellow-based neutrals are easy to live with.  They offer a delicate hint of colour to a room that can add freshness.  If you have a sunny room and you want to make the best use of the natural light, then these yellow-based neutrals are your perfect choice.  The more connection you wish between the indoors and outdoors, the creamier the yellow you should choose.  To make the most of this look paint woodwork white to give an impression of depth to the room.

Contemporary neutrals

If you find traditional neutrals too severe, then you may want a more modern look.  The use of these neutral colours gives a laidback feel – a real sense of home.  The shades tend to be on the grey spectrum but with some warmth of lilac as an undertone.  If you are feeling brave, you can go for a much darker shade of grey, which can add a touch of drama.  Mixed with pure white paintwork, this is particularly effective in a hallway.

Architectural neutrals

Think of your minimal city space – add in some bright walls – but then tinge this with a slight hint of black.  The black pigment adds some softness to what would otherwise be a stark space.  You can use bright white paint for drama – and maybe a steely blue for the floor – to draw on that industrial feel that is popular in the city.  If this all feels a little too severe for you, try using these tones in your bathrooms – with some powerful lighting to add drama.

Easy neutrals

If all these choices feel too decisive – and you are not one to commit to set design – then easy neutrals might be a better choice for you.  This is the compromise colour scheme, or the Goldilocks colours, as they should be known. They are neither too cold, nor too warm – they are not too subtle, nor do they add too much drama – and they graduate somewhere in the middle of light and shade.  These easy neutrals are the perfect choice if you are looking for a Scandinavian look and you have plenty of wooden furniture.

Choice and personality

The many shades of neutral paint offer the opportunity to bring character to your home without being too fussy.  You may not want to make a statement but instead, create a mood.  These neutral colours are far from boring, and you can bring so much personality to your home with the right choices.

Edward Sloane

Edward is the managing director of Sloane & Sons Stylish Chairs. He is an expert in quality, comfortable upholstered chairs.


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