Decorating in Blue
Creating a Blue Color Scheme
See how to use blue in a color scheme.
Quick Color Scheme
One of the easiest color palettes to create is to combine white with one other color. Here, a navy blue accent wall provides high contrast to the surrounding white walls and decorative trim. Patterned throw pillows throughout the room pull in both navy and white and also incorporate colors found in the artwork hanging above the headboard.
Soft blues and pale greens work together to make this small living room feel large. Although many people tend to stray toward neutrals to open up tight quarters, colors in soft hues like these can also do the trick. The barely-there blue on the walls lends a subtle backdrop for a mix of prints on the furniture, draperies, and accessories.
Better Ways to Use Blue
Blue is a classic color, but that doesn't mean it has to be boring or stodgy. Here are three creative ways to use blue in your decor.
Add color through accessories and accents to amp up any room. In this classic white kitchen, a blue brick backsplash above the range and a trio of soft blue chairs along one side of the island introduce color to the elegant space. The hues also complement the cool tones featured in the countertops and vent hood.
Classic Meets Contemporary
Bright splashes of color and patterns can help modernize traditional spaces. Patterned blue chairs flank this living room’s fireplace and help to set off the hearth as the room’s main focal point. The bold hue is also featured elsewhere throughout the room in solid blocks of color, such as on the lampshades and throw pillows.
Although singular in hue, a monochromatic color palette can have multiple dimensions. Using one color in a room creates a sleek, sophisticated look, but including a few variations on the featured hue will boost character. In this cool blue living room, vivid shades of sky blue pop against blue-based neutrals.
Clean & Classy
Light blue, brown, and beige create a sophisticated palette. In this living room, the white trim and ceiling combine with light wood floors to keep it feeling airy.
A bright blue wall is the perfect complement to unique furniture marked by geometric shapes and unique designs. The rest of the room is kept simple with a white bedspread and a white door frame, which leads into a modern white bathroom.
A smattering of blue accents adds liveliness to an otherwise cool color scheme in this sitting area. Solid colored blue draperies offer privacy without weighing the space down, while blue-and-white striped chairs add dimension and contrast against the all-white walls, trim, and area rug.
Since they’re both primary colors, pairing red and blue is an easy, no-fail decorating strategy. A large piece of vintage artwork, featuring fire engine red and robin’s egg blue, served as the color inspiration for this dining room. A bold blue tablecloth helps to calm the warmer tones found in the striped rug and cherry wood dining set.
White and blue stripes give this guest room a nautical feel, while large leather headboards add texture to break up the wall. The lattice-like pattern on the throw pillows also provides dimension and contrast against the bold stripes.
Bold patterns in a soothing color palette give this dining room dimension without looking overwhelming. The patterned wallpaper has a similar graphic impact as that of damask, but reads more youthful and contemporary and has an Art Deco influence. The blue and red Oriental rug adds a splash of contrasting color that keeps the room from looking washed out.
A navy-and-white rug, featuring a motif of concentric rectangles, steals the show in this large master bedroom suite. The rug's graphic pattern complements the sleek lines of the modern furniture. Bold accessories in colors such as coral and chartreuse emphasize the rug's deep navy hue.
Serene & Stylish
Muted blue walls and dark wood furniture blend to create a harmonious backdrop for this master bedroom. Minimal accessories and decor create a relaxing atmosphere that’s reminiscent of a day at the spa. A bold orange throw at the foot of the bed adds a splash of contrasting color to prevent the monochromatic space from looking washed out.
Soft blue walls are the perfect complement to this master bedroom’s modern style furniture and minimalist decor. Although the bedding and most of the other accessories throughout the room are also blue, a variety of textures and subtle patterns prevents the monochromatic color palette from looking boring.
A blue painted island adds a splash of contemporary style to this classic kitchen. The island’s soft hue complements slate gray countertops and stainless-steel appliances and accessories.
Calm, Cool, Collected
In this master bedroom, cypress wall paneling adds a rustic touch to white painted furniture and abstract artwork. Steely blue accents, such as the bed skirt and throw pillows, echo hues featured in the painting above the headboard and also play off the cool undertones of the wall paneling.
Accentuate the Positive
A blue accent wall adds a splash of personality to this master bedroom suite. The blue wall calls attention toward the dramatic, custom-designed headboard. Patterned throw pillows introduce contrasting and complementary colors to give the accent wall even more oomph.
Orange & Blue
A dark four-poster is highlighted by orange bed linens and subtle blue walls in this elegant yet modern bedroom. Blue and orange are opposite each other on the color wheel, making them complementary colors. The pair creates a dynamic color scheme infused with vibrancy even when the shades are lighter, as they are in this bedroom.
Blue Faux Bois
Accent colors and patterns can add dimension to a basic palette. Here, blue faux bois wallpaper, a modern leaf motif on the bedspread, and pops of yellow bring a fresh face and a trendy twist to a classic blue-and-white color palette.
Worlds of Inspiration
Draw color inspiration from just about anywhere, from maps to rugs to children’s artwork. Soft blue walls, reminiscent of the sea and sky, served as the inspiration for a giant map mural in the bed alcove of this child’s bedroom. The mural’s light blue and soft parchment color palette are repeated in the bedding and elsewhere throughout the room.
In this spa-like bathroom, soft blue subway tiles and a painted blue vanity allow for a serene start to the day. Pairing blue with crisp white in a bath gives the space a clean finish. The color combination can lean cottage with the addition of the vintage inspired beaded-board vanity; or, with sleek surfaces and fixtures, it can take on a contemporary vibe.
Crisp blues and leafy greens are ideal for outdoor decorating, particularly in seaside locations. And from the blue-painted floorboards to the striking royal blue upholstered swing, this colorful porch recalls the ever-changing colors of its nautical surroundings. Leaving the furniture white allows the bold blue hues and playful patterns to shine.