9 Retro Colors That Are Making a Comeback in Home Design

kitchen with green cabinets and wood floors
Photo: Werner Straube

Certain colors from the past evoke comfort, familiarity, and joy. Bring that warmth into your home with a palette inspired by retro color trends. These nostalgic hues are back in style with a modern twist.

01 of 09


Sofa and armchair by coffee table in living room
Adam Albright

This dusty pink-purple is straight out of the '80s, but it's back on top of current color trends. Today's mauve brings a sophisticated sense to living areas, dining rooms, and more. Opt for saturated, dusky shades over wispy pastels to give this color a modern edge.

02 of 09


bedroom with clay beige walls blue and white striped rug
Granen Photography

The crisp, cool neutrals that dominated the past decade are giving way to a familiar favorite: beige. Popular throughout the '90s and early 2000s, the warm, sandy tone is now bringing nostalgic comfort to today's interiors. Combine beige with dusty blues or rich clay tones for an easygoing, nature-inspired color scheme.

03 of 09

Denim Blue

master bedroom dark gray blue painted walls
Adam Albright

Familiar as a well-worn pair of jeans, this shade of blue harkens back to traditional interiors, and it's trending again today. Paint walls denim blue for timeless appeal and liveable, understated color. In bedrooms and bathrooms, it creates a soothing atmosphere ideal for relaxation.

04 of 09

Earthy Green

kitchen with green cabinets and wood floors
Werner Straube

Consider this today's answer to the avocado green of the 1960s and '70s. Deep, earthy shades of green are sprouting up all over, but they're especially popular in kitchens as a dramatic cabinet color and in bathroom towels and accessories (like this Better Homes & Gardens Solid Waffle Fabric Shower Curtain, $24, Walmart). Select a hue with plenty of gray mixed in for organic color that reads as a neutral.

05 of 09


bright yellow corner wall and curtains
Brittany Ambridge

The groovy style of the '70s brought vibrant colors like yellow into our homes. Fast forward a few decades, and shades ranging from buttery yellow to rich mustard are cropping up again throughout our homes in big and small ways (like in this Better Homes & Gardens Decorative Throw Pillow, $13, Walmart). For a fresh twist, amp up the intensity with a vibrant shade of lemon or citrine.

06 of 09

Warm White

white farmhouse dining wood candelabra plate display
Nathan Schroder

Warm, antique whites remind of old farmhouses and cozy country cottages. These softer shades are starting to regain prevalence over bright, pure whites that have been popular over the past several years. Look for white paint colors with subtle undertones of red or yellow to give rooms a warm, inviting atmosphere.

07 of 09

Mint Green

kitchen with wooden cabinets and light green island
Kritsada Panichgul

Mint green was a must-have color throughout the first half of the 20th century, when it frequently popped up in kitchens and bathrooms. The soft pastel was historically juxtaposed with jet-black and bright white for sharp contrast. To put a modern spin on this nostalgic color, pair mint green (like this Better Homes & Gardens Embroidered Botanical Pillow, $18, Walmart) with soft whites and wood tones for a fresh, natural look.

08 of 09

Pastel Pink

pink bathroom walls double white vanity gold pulls oval black mirrors
Wall paint color: Ballerina PPG1183-1, Glidden. Adam Albright

During the 1950s, pastel shades of pink were splashed across all sorts of surfaces, including bathroom tile, sinks, bathtubs, and more. While today's version of this trend is less all-encompassing, powdery pink is once again popular in bathrooms. Combine the paint color with modern black accents to temper pink's sweetness.

09 of 09


bright red living room
Joyelle West

Red was a go-to paint color during the post-war period as people sought to create brighter, more cheerful homes. In contemporary spaces, it provides dramatic color that still feels classic. Go with true red for a punchy accent, or veer toward deeper shades of burgundy for a luxurious feel.

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