Choosing a few winning wall color combinations for your home is really the backbone of your design scheme. No matter how neatly organized your throws, cushions, vases and artwork are, if your color scheme is off, nothing will work.

Your wall and furniture paint color combinations should be the first choice you make when planning your design, as this will have a ripple effect on everything else.

Interior paint color trends come and go and, naturally, we love them, but there are some color combinations that just always work. One of the biggest questions we get asked is how to decide which colors go well together.

And the answer is: you have to choose colors that complement each other. We’ve compiled this guide to some of our favorite fail-safe combinations, so you can understand why they work and replicate them yourself at home.

1. Soft pink and dark orange

A bold living room with pink, orange and red wall decor using chalk paint by Annie Sloan in shades of Antoinette, Barcelona Orange and Emperor's Silk

(Image credit: Annie Sloan)

Doesn’t it just remind you of dreamy sunsets? Pink and orange are warm, comforting and inviting, and combined in this creative color block wall design, they really pack a punch.

“My best recommendation for combining colors is to combine a pastel color with a muddier color. The trick is to blend each shade with the darkest, dirtiest color and vice versa so that your piece is layered,” explains Melanie Thomas, interior designer at Melanie Thomas Design. (opens in a new tab).

In the living room idea above, the soft pink pastel walls contrast beautifully with the dark orange, so the colors enhance rather than fight each other.

2. Black and white

Bathroom with black and white zigzag tiles from the floor to the bath panel on the wall

(Image credit: Adelina Iliev)

Monochrome is such a classic color combination. Whether your decor is traditional and elegant, or contemporary and sophisticated, there really aren’t many styles or rooms where monochrome doesn’t look great. As the ultimate balance, black absorbs light while white reflects, creating a perfectly harmonious and easy-going room.

We love the bold geometric shapes created by the dramatic patterned tiles in this bathroom idea, but even using white walls and black accessories can also have the same effect.

3. Hot Pink and Forest Green

bedroom with pink walls, green headboard and lilac bedding

(Image credit: Yes Colours)

Generally, colors that face each other on the color wheel go well together – and a pink and green combo is a perfect example. This color combination has become so popular over the past few years and we’ve seen it used everywhere, from living rooms to bedrooms and kitchens.

The soft shade of pink in this bedroom idea above might be a little too soft on its own, but the deep forest green on the bed helps add depth and ground the scheme for a fun and vibrant space. , but mature.

4. … or plaster pink and olive green

Green kitchen cabinets with peach walls and marble splashback

(Image credit: future)

Take those same colors and tone them down for an easy going pink and green scheme for everyone. You can update your kitchen easily and inexpensively with colorful kitchen cabinet paint – and choose a contrasting shade for your walls like this kitchen idea.

Plaster pink and olive green both have a more natural, organic and earthy quality to them, which makes the scheme more soothing and tranquil.

5. Mustard and Gray

Mustard yellow velvet king size bed with storage by Danetti in a gray bedroom

(Image credit: Danetti)

“Wall color combinations work best when the main color is accented with a brighter, warmer or more intense color in some way. This provides visual interest and contrast, which not only amplifies the accent color, but also flatters the base color in a room,” says Andre Kazimierski, CEO of Improovy. (opens in a new tab).

Gray will always be a great base color. It’s an inherently cool shade, so it works especially well when combined with warmer colors. The mustard bed in the gray bedroom idea above is a perfect example.

6. Rust and Sage Green

bedroom with terracotta paneled walls and olive green bedding

(Image credit: Coat)

As our lives are increasingly spent indoors and on screens, we all crave open spaces and the calming effects of nature more than ever, and that includes colors.

The rust and sage green color combination is earthy, warm and relaxed, elegant and refined, but doesn’t take itself too seriously. It is suitable for a living room or kitchen as well as for a boy’s room.

The natural textures used in the image above – from the wood paneled wall to the linen fabric and wool rug all amplify that natural, soothing and somewhat rugged feel.

7. Powder pink and midnight blue

Kitchen diner with herringbone floor, Critall style doors, dark blue Shaker style kitchen with light pink island and blue velvet sofa

(Image credit: Katie Lee)

Following the classic rule of mixing warm and cool colors, blue and pink are always winners. This open kitchen idea pairs a deep midnight blue sofa with a soft and subtle dusty pink island for a fun and friendly yet uncluttered space.

8. Cobalt Blue and Fire Orange

A living room with blue wall paint decor and orange velvet sofa furniture

(Image credit: Chris Snook)

Now, this one might not be for everyone, but if you like bright, vibrant colors, electric blue and power orange can be a joy to behold. This is dopamine decorating at its finest and is sure to bring a burst of energy every time you walk into the room.

9. Candy Red and Pink Lipstick

lounge area with pink armchair and red storage unit

(Image credit: Ligne Roset)

A pink and red combo is making waves in the fashion world – vibrant dresses and bold patterns, it’s a fun and confident statement combination – and we’re seeing it seep into our interiors too. Seemingly breaking all the rules with two bold warm hues, this pairing shouldn’t work, but somehow it does.

We love how it’s used in fairly small doses in the storage unit and armchair to create a statement that can be easily picked up and moved around if you change your mind.

What are the most powerful color combinations?

The most powerful color combinations work by making an impact in a room for all the right reasons. How we perceive color is a personal thing, so the most powerful combinations will be different for everyone.

But in general, the most powerful couples include a high level of contrast. From black and white bathrooms to dusty pink and midnight blue kitchens, from mustard yellow and gray living room ideas to cobalt and orange bedrooms, the greater the difference in hue, the more striking the look.

What are the three best colors that go together?

Along the same lines, the top three colors that go together will vary depending on your personal preference. But here are some of our favorite color trios:

  • Teal, dusty pink and yellow
  • Sage Green, Rust Orange and Cream
  • Forest green, mustard yellow and black

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