How to Decorate with Jewel-Tone Colors for a Bold, Gorgeous Home

Vibrant jewel-tone colors add drama and personality to any room. See our expert tips for decorating with these hues and the best paint colors to nail the look.

After a decade dominated mainly by crisp whites and cool grays, jewel-tone colors are bringing bold, beautiful shades back into our homes. These rich hues, derived from precious gemstones such as amethyst, emerald, ruby, and sapphire, provide a dramatic and colorful alternative neutral color palettes.

Erika Woelfel, vice president of color and creative services at Behr Paint, credits some of this renewed craving for color as a reaction to time spent mostly at home during the pandemic. "When we couldn't seek adventure through travel and socializing outside the home, we looked to bring a little adventure inside," she says. Woelfel also notes the influence of popular TV series such as Bridgerton, The Crown, and The Queen's Gambit, which showcased deep, dramatic colors in their costuming and set designs.

Regardless, jewel tones have become a popular style that brings moodiness to rooms all around the house. "Jewel tones work well in any room in which you want to create warmth, drama, or a bit of unexpectedness," says Alabama-based designer Dana Wolter. Because of their depth, these hues offer color that doesn't feel excessively bright or overwhelming, she says.

How to Decorate with Jewel-Tone Colors

dining room home decor blue chairs black table
Annie Schlechter

Jewel-tone colors include variations of red, yellow, green, blue, and purple that range from mid-tones to deep, saturated shades. Embrace a striking, colorful look with these expert tips for decorating with jewel tones.

1. Go bold with big doses of color.

green couch living room gray walls
Greg Scheidemann

When decorating with jewel tones, "you have to do one of two things: use sparingly as an accent or fully commit," says interior designer Janelle Burns of Dallas-based architecture and interior design firm Maestri Studio. If you choose the latter, bring in jewel tones on major elements such as walls, upholstery, area rugs, and cabinetry. Then repeat that formula throughout your home. Burns says that if you incorporate bold color in just one room, it will feel disjointed from the rest of the house.

2. Swap in small accents.

colorful artwork tequila straws alcohol
Jay Wilde

Alternatively, you can start small with jewel-tone accessories that are relatively inexpensive and easy to change up. San Diego-based interior designer Susan Spath suggests adding bursts of color through pillows and artwork. "Pillows allow you to add colors into your space that are fun and bold but stop short of a huge statement," she says.

Tabletop accessories are another simple way to try out jewel tones. "If you love jewel tones but don't want to change up your current furnishings and decor, then use them for all your hosting and entertaining needs," says Sara Barney of the Austin interior design studio BANDD DESIGN. "Setting the table with these gorgeous colors is a surefire way to wow your guests and make the setting feel luxurious."

3. Combine several jewel tones into one palette.

bedroom blue velvet headboard next to table
Jason Donnelly

Because most jewel tones are similar in color value, they work well when paired together. Opt for dark, rich shades to avoid an overly jarring look. "The deeper the jewel tone, the less they'll compete with another, so pick your favorites and go for it," says Chicago interior designer Brynn Olson. Her favorite combination is mixing jewel-like shades of blue, green, and gold. Barney suggests mixing warm and cool jewel tones, such as emerald green with magenta, for a high-contrast look.

4. Apply jewel tones with intention.

Living room with blue seating and TV
James Nathan Schroder

"Bold colors draw your eyes, so you want to make sure you dress up the room appropriately," says Hannah Yeo, color marketing and development manager at Benjamin Moore. Look for areas you want to highlight, such as your front door or the kitchen island, and use jewel tones to make them a focal point.

For a surprise of color, Roger Higgins of the Nashville design firm R. Higgins Interiors prefers to apply jewel tones in pass-through spaces as opposed to main living areas. "We like to use jewel tones in transitioning spaces, powder rooms, wet bars, or a room meant for entertaining that can hold the weight of a more dramatic color," he says.

5. Highlight jewel tones with shiny accents.

wallpapered bath with bright green vanity
Jeff Herr

Yeo says that reflective surfaces such as mirrors, glass, and metallic finishes are a natural complement to jewel tones, helping to play up the glam look. However, this isn't the time to experiment with mixed metals. To let the jewel-tone colors take center stage, Barney suggests sticking with a single finish, such as gold or silver.

Best Jewel-Tone Paint Colors

Try these designer-favorite paint colors to dress up your home in jewel tones.

Admiral Blue M520-7, Behr

Woelfel calls Behr's Admiral Blue "a deep blue reminiscent of sapphire." Try it on walls in an office or bedroom for a cozy feeling. Warm neutrals or equally rich shades of green and gold make beautiful accents.

Brushed Clay, Magnolia Home

This ochre hue from Magnolia Home by Joanna Gaines is reminiscent of the yellow-orange color of citrine. Nashville interior designer Jessica Davis of JL Design says it's "perfect for color blocking on walls, a kitchen table, or wooden chairs."

Cascades SW 7623, Sherwin-Williams

dark teal living room
Marty Baldwin

"Cascades by Sherwin-Williams is my absolute go-to for a deep, moody jewel-tone paint color," Barney says. "I've used this deep teal color for walls, bathroom vanities, and kitchen cabinetry." Pair it with rich wood finishes and brass accents for a luxurious look.

Crushed Velvet 2076-10, Benjamin Moore

Crushed Velvet is a rich shade of raspberry that "adds a punch of energy and fun," Yeo says. Try it as a backdrop for your gallery wall or on the front door to give guests a warm welcome.

Inverness SW 6433, Sherwin-Williams

Higgins loves Inverness from Sherwin-Williams for "a gorgeous, deep green." He recently used it on a wet bar, pairing it with white marble and an antique rug. Pale blue and coral accents beautifully balance the dark green.

Ming Jade 2043-20, Benjamin Moore

Ming Jade is Olson's choice for a crisp, bright jewel-tone color that "packs a serious punch of playfulness." Because of its vibrancy, it works best as an accent among other subtler shades. Use it to paint over a bathroom vanity or a dresser with a fun color.

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