Neutral Living Room Color Ideas

living room
Neutral colors can be the perfect base for any living room. Find ideas here about how to design and decorate your living space with warm neutral paint colors and furniture to bring your personal style to the room.

Perfectly Blended

Mix cool neutrals, such as silvery blues and grays, with warmer browns and tans to create cheerfully pleasing living room designs. This neutral living room decorating idea uses blues and browns to achieve a pretty balance. Though used minimally, pretty blue accents appear as unfussy patterns that contribute water-music notes, which subtly further this room's nautical leanings and counterbalance the room's weightier brown furnishings and architectural details.

Neutral colors range from the lightest of beiges to the richest of grays. See how to use neutral colors in your home decorating. Plus, learn how a neutral color scheme can be brought to life in any room.

Decorating with Neutrals

Watch and learn how to put together the perfect palette of neutral living room colors. Neutrals aren't just gray, black, white, or beige, they can also be colors from the color wheel that are tinted with white or black along with another color to create a new hue. 

Neutral as a Base

Incorporate light and dark contrasting details to boost a neutral living room's appeal. Use a rich beige as a neutral paint color for the living room. Showcase deep-tone walls with white or creamy painted woodwork; outfit wood floors with tone-on-tone patterned area rugs; and hang a silvery chandelier above a weathered log table. Placing dark against light and light against dark lets individual elements shine, which in turn directs attention around the room.

Neutral Plus Color

In a living room where neutrals reign, choose a single high-impact hue and strategically place and display it in fetchingly unexpected ways. In this neutral color living room design, cream, medium brown, and white combine for a peacefully pleasing backdrop that could have taken a turn toward boring without the addition of look-at-me splashes of aqua that pop up as a faux-leather chair and a sculptural glass chandelier.

Brown Living Room

If you like your living on the quiet side, use finely finished antiques in varying shades of brown to compose understated but still attractive harmonies. The subtly shifting wood tones make neutral living room furniture feel as if it's been assembled over time. Let the finishes and their undertones be your guide when adding in lighter or darker browns as solid lampshades, leather ottomans, and patterned fabrics.

New Classic

Turn the tide on traditional and transform classically neutral living rooms into captivating scenes. Use shades of beige for this warm neutral living room idea. Upholster antique and vintage furnishings in casual linen fabrics and fashion-forward patterns. Neutral living room furniture with classic profiles say timeless, while the newly added textiles promote original thinking. Weave in refined and rustic accessories to underscore your personality-infused design vision.

Be Adaptable

Bold citrus hues and sassy retro motifs make a living room appear livelier than its neutral bones initially suggest. That's the biggest advantage to neutrals; they're flexible shades that partner with most colors and decorating styles. Look beyond this room's bold touches, and you'll note that the room's stone-shaded perimeters, the focal-point fireplace, classic window treatments, and modern furniture could stand alone but could work equally well with a beach-inspired scheme or forest-and-field hues.

Pick Partners

Brown tones are perfect neutral living room colors. Opt for one light color (such as linen) and a deeper tone (such as cocoa brown), and you've got a versatile palette that will create simply striking living rooms. Here, brown shows up as patterned pillows, a striped area rug, and nailhead trim and welting on upholstered furnishings. Variations of the hue repeat as metal tables, distressed patinas, and fine furniture finishes to fashion a calming, collected look.

Play with Pattern

Look beyond accent and upholstery fabrics when incorporating pattern into neutral living room ideas. Remember that paneled woodwork, wire coffee tables and magazine racks, woven blinds, and natural materials contribute patterns ranging from geometric grid designs to abstract striations that beautifully complement a room's other images and motifs without causing a space to feel busy.

Build Character

Longing for a life's-a-beach life? Use navy blues, sandy beiges, and wave-cap whites to create a neutral living room that will satisfy your seaside yearnings until your budget allows a move to the shore. White is an easy neutral paint for living room decor. Placing white furnishings and accessories against white walls creates breezy and cheerful backdrops that handily highlight coastal colors and beach-combed treasures.

Go Gray

Build welcoming and modern neutral living room ideas around a gray scheme. When appearing as deep-charcoal walls, the hue adds a layer of warmth that partners nicely with sleek chrome sconces, zinc-top tables, and wood furnishings with distressed and silvery driftwood finishes. Keep the mood bright with linen-upholstered sofas, white area rugs, and naturally neutral window shades.

Turn Up the Shimmer

Mirrored and metallic surfaces bring panache to neutral living rooms. Modern living rooms benefit from the addition of chrome furniture and lamps and cool-looking mirrors. Love classic? Introduce gold or silver frames, gilded furniture finishes, and polished-brass accents. If transitional design is your thing, opt for furnishings and framed mirrors with galvanized steel, zinc, and black iron details.

Mix It Up

Create comfortable conversation groupings comprised of sofas and chairs upholstered in complementary, but not matchy-matchy, textiles. Since most neutrals play well together, you can mix (or switch) them whenever the mood strikes. This living room's stone fireplace inspired an organically neutral palette that blends limestone and charcoal grays with off-white, black, brown, and russet hues.

Monochromatic Neutrals

A soothing symphony rendered in bright white and barely-there grays, this space with neutral living room colors steps quietly while housing noteworthy details that supply interest at every level. The lesson here? Choose similarly colored accessories, like shaggy area rugs, galvanized-metal tables, shimmering silver and glass vases, distressed geometric mirrors, and tone-on-tone patterned draperies that contribute remarkable textures and distinctive forms.

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