14 Charming Ways to Decorate with Pastel Colors

Add a calming softness to any space with a pastel color palette.

bedroom with mint green walls

Adam Albright

Not quite neutral, but far from bold, pastel colors offer the best of both worlds—they infuse a room with softness while adding a hint of color. And if you think a pastel color palette is reserved for kids' rooms and Easter decor, think again. These delicate colors are versatile enough to work in a range of spaces, from spa-like bathrooms to modern home offices.

Whether it's a soothing shade of lavender, a vintage-inspired dusty pink, or a refreshing mint green, these pale shades can look sweet and whimsical in one room while adding elegance and timeless sophistication to another. Incorporate pastel tones through paint colors and patterned wallpaper, or use it as an accent through tile, textiles, or furniture.

To inspire your next home decorating project, we're sharing our favorite pastel colors for every space in the house.

01 of 14

Pastel Pink Home Office

home office with pink walls white desk and black chair

Joyelle West Photography

A warm shade of blush pink fills this home office with bright and inviting energy. Paired with crisp white trim and a muted pastel rug, the wall shade offers a delicate hint of color that doesn't overwhelm the small space. The plush velvet chair upholstered in a luxuriously deep shade of gray adds color contrast and ties in black gallery wall frames and curtain trim detail.

02 of 14

Violet Bedroom

bedroom with blue upholstered bed, white and blue bedding
Jay Wilde

Violet walls usher in a calming feel in this modern bedroom. The pastel color's cool undertones reveal a hint of gray, providing an almost-neutral backdrop for a matte black wall sconce, minimalist side table, and monochrome art prints. A platform bed upholstered in a deep indigo velvet accents the walls with a more saturated shade, offering a clever design trick for how to build a pastel color palette with depth and contrast.

03 of 14

Rustic Lavender Dining Room

rustic dining table in room with lavender-gray walls
Jay Wilde

Pastel might not be the first thing that comes to mind when designing a rustic space, but the two create a charming blend of casual and sophisticated in this dining room. Lavender walls are an unexpected color choice that instantly draws attention and helps highlight the home's exquisite historic molding details. The cool pastel shade softens the visual weight of a rustic farmhouse dining table, while a brass sputnik-style chandelier brings in a modern edge.

04 of 14

Pastel Bedroom Accents

bedroom with white nightstand and yellow headboard

Kat Teutsch

A butter-yellow tufted headboard makes a cheery statement in this bedroom. The pastel color is just saturated enough to pop against a light gray wall and crisp white bedding, and the warm yellow hue brightens the room without disturbing the light color scheme. An abstract piece of art in a simple white frame ties in the yellow headboard and juxtaposes it with its complementary color—a bold turquoise blue that injects the room with energy.

05 of 14

Mint Green Bedroom

bedroom with mint green walls

Adam Albright

Mint green walls set a soothing tone in this modern bedroom. A serene and relaxing shade, this pastel color is an excellent choice for bedrooms and bathrooms. A unique marble headboard pulls in the cool wall tones, while touches of bright orange infuse the space with a burst of energy. Pale pink pillows and rug accents complete the pastel color palette and show that you don't need to use bold, saturated colors for a vibrant and colorful room design.

06 of 14

Pastel Living Room

sky blue and lavender living room
John Bessler 

A tufted sectional upholstered in pale blue fabric is the epitome of elegance in this sophisticated living room. The pastel color is repeated in the window treatments that are lined with lavender trim—a shade that's also used on throw pillows, a framed canvas, and a large amethyst crystal displayed on the glass coffee table. Warm white walls complement the soft color palette and a seafoam green wallpaper covers the ceiling for a sky-like effect that accents the high ceilings.

07 of 14

Teal Bedroom Accent Wall

teal bedroom wall with pink light

Better Homes & Gardens

A creamy teal accent wall, blush pink pendant light, pale yellow duvet, and light blue sheets infuse this modern bedroom with a trendy candy-color theme. The various pastel colors in this space have varying levels of saturation and intensity, which is an easy way to make a pastel color scheme look elegant instead of kitchy. The bold blue-green color of the accent wall highlights the simplicity of the other pastel shades around the room.

08 of 14

Pastel Purple Living Room

living room with lavender purple walls

David A. Land

Pastel purple walls are a delicate base for a bold color scheme of golden yellow, bright fuchsia, and saturated orange in this eclectic living space. Instead of using a pastel color as an accent, use it in the place of a neutral such as beige or gray to intensify a color palette. Whenever you use multiple bold colors in a room, incorporate one unifying item—such as an abstract painting or patterned area rug—that features all the colors to bring the space together.

09 of 14

Brass and Dusty Pink

pink and white bathroom
Annie Schlechter

Color blocking adds modern flair to a vintage-inspired color scheme of dusty pink and antique brass in this bright bathroom. The pastel pink backsplash creates a sense of height and highlights the unique vanity design. The warmth of the mirrors, wall sconces, and other brass hardware ushers in old-world charm, while white wall and floor tile maintains a contemporary balance. A distressed peach-toned runner rug adds a touch of sophistication as a more visually interesting alternative to a classic bath mat.

10 of 14

Pastel Green Bedroom

pastel green seafoam bedroom with black frames on wall

Adam Albright

Seafoam green makes a splash in this calm and serene bedroom. The pastel color in the patterned comforter, throw pillows, and artwork above the bed sets a relaxing tone. A simple white bedskirt adds softness and dresses up the bed frame, while a collection of framed wall prints mimics a headboard and introduces deeper shades of blue. A weathered wood nightstand brings in an element of warmth to break up the light pastel hues, while a striped rug adds comfort and a contrasting pattern for visual interest.

11 of 14

Mint Green Wood Paneling

blue chair in front of green wood wall

Greg Scheidemann

Instead of removing outdated wood paneling, turn it into an accent wall with a coat of pastel paint. This light mint green tone refreshes the wall while exposing the wood grain and some of its rustic charm. Botanical-theme artwork highlights the natural theme and a jute rug adds a textural element.

12 of 14

Pastel Blue Wallpaper

living room with pastel blue wallpaper

Greg Scheidemann

A pastel blue wallpaper adds a hint of color and subtle pattern to this light and bright living room. The softness of the wall covering provides a soothing backdrop for the oatmeal-colored sofa and warm white curtain panels, creating a cozy gathering space. Decorative accents such as a mint green table lamp, striped purple throw, and painted wicker baskets bring in additional pastel shades to further the soft color theme.

13 of 14

Cool Pink Bathroom Vanity

bathroom with light pink accents and patterned walls
Nathan Schroder

A pale pink bathroom vanity stands out against a backdrop of gray and white geometric wall tile. The neutral floor-to-ceiling tile allows the vanity to take center stage while providing visual texture. A leaf-print wallpaper on the opposite wall introduces darker shades of pink and gray for a cohesive color scheme and dramatic depth. For an unexpected touch, an aqua blue stool enlivens the bathroom and brings in a bright pop of playful color.

14 of 14

Pastel Blue Cabinet

blue dresser with frames and lamp

Kim Cornelison

Pastel furniture is an easy way to incorporate a lighter hue into your home without going as far as painting the walls. If you're not set on a color scheme, test it out by painting a cabinet or dresser rather than the whole room. Here, a pastel blue cabinet with intricately carved details brightens up a medium-gray wall, instantly enlivening the whole vignette. A pair of framed abstract prints repeat the blue and gray color scheme for a cohesive look.

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