Blue Like You've Never Seen Before

This living room shows how using bold color can instantly modernize a space and completely change the tone. If you're ready to go big with color in your decorating, take a cue from this room's fearless approach to color, and you'll be on your way to success.

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Everything In This Slideshow

  • 1 of 10

    Cure with Color

    This once dark, wood-paneled library needed an update to make the space feel inviting and fun. The solution: plenty of smart design tricks and paint; lots of blue paint. 

  • 2 of 10

    Commit To It

    Painting all the walls, trim, and built-ins highlights the architecture, and the chosen color energizes the room. 


    To achieve even paint coverage, the designer, Liz Caan, applied a base layer of sealing primer tinted with the wall color before rolling on the final coats of blue. 

  • 3 of 10

    Pick Your Palette

    Although the colors are bold, the overall palette is limited to blues, greens, blacks, and whites, rather than a whole rainbow of colors.

  • 4 of 10

    Marvelous Metallics

    Gold and brass accents help break up all the color in this room while adding some needed shine. Incorporating white and black also helps to relieve the eye so the room stays chic, not cluttered.

  • 5 of 10

    Keep Scale in Mind

    When dealing with multiple patterns and colors, scale is important. Here, a small, geometric pillow combines with a large zebra print and thin chevron motif. Changing the size of patterns helps to balance out the color and impact of the pieces so they can all work together instead of competing against one another.

  • 6 of 10

    Color Relief

    Even in a bold color palette, neutrals have a place. Incorporate neutrals in subtle doses so they don't seem jarring. Here, beige curtains and a gray rug provide visual relief. Apply the same trick to patterns: work in solids and more subtle patterns (like the barely noticeable plaid on these armchairs) to balance bold strokes.

  • 7 of 10

    Creative Color Combos

    Lime green chairs are the perfect complement to the room's blue walls. The bright green color gets noticed without stealing the show. Although the coral pillows deviate from the room's color palette, they look right at home because they pick up on colors in the artwork above the mantel. By detouring from your color palette in a spot or two, you'll create rhythm and help the eye move around the room. Pick up on a cue already in the room to choose your out-of-palette hue, such as a color from a piece of art or an accessory.

  • 8 of 10

    Add In Accessories

    Accessories in fun, quirky shapes tone down the room's originally traditional feel. By keeping the accessories consistent with the room's palette, the pieces feel like they truly belong in the room instead of being randomly plucked off store shelves.

  • 9 of 10

    More Ways to Do Blue

    Can't get enough of this classic hue? Here are three more ways to decorate in blue.

  • Next Slideshow Living Room Design Ideas

    Living Room Design Ideas

    Decorating a living room has never been easier with inspiration from these gorgeous spaces. Discover living room color ideas and smart living room decor tips that will make your space beautiful and livable.
    Begin Slideshow »
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