How to choose a color palette: essential tips!

How To Pick A Color Palette

Posted on by Walls by Me

How To Pick A Color Palette


Stark white walls, floors that badly need a touch-up, lighting that’s barely functional, and the knowledge that you can’t do much without risking your deposit…apartment living can easily make you feel like you’re out of options. However, turning that cookie-cutter space into your dream abode doesn’t take much. Today, let’s look at the first step – picking a color scheme that works best for you.

If you pick a color palette that suits your taste and brings out the best in your living space, most of your decor woes will cease to exist. In many ways, color is the foundation for your home’s ambiance. It can make a room feel cozy or spacious, highlight a piece of furniture, or help everything blend into one cohesive composition. It can add warmth or keep things cool, and can decide how organized, structured or dynamic a given space feels.  

Despite their wide-ranging contributions to your home’s interiors, colors don’t pressure you to be a design expert. With some basic understanding, you can easily pick a color palette that gives your apartment the flavor you have in mind. Read on for some quick and convenient tips!

How To Pick A Color Palette That Wins Everyone Over

A light colored couch with four sections of different wall patterns behind it

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Go With Your Gut

When you embark on your mission to choose the right color palette, the first step is always the hardest. Where exactly do you start? Well, the good news is that just about anywhere is fine! Have a favorite color or color pairing that you would love to see more of? Feel like warming up your space with earth tones, or adding some teal coolness to a specific room? Go with whatever your gut tells you. There’s a way to make every color choice and pairing look fabulous, so don’t worry too much about making the right decision.

A selection of fabric samples and paint cards

Build it from the ground up

Are you thinking of picking a color scheme with a mix of dark and light tones? Or have you chosen a single color and aren’t sure what to combine it with? Here’s a shortcut that many experts recommend – arrange the tones from dark to light, starting from the floor. This is basically how things happen in nature, with darker shades appearing at the ground and easing off into a pale sky blue as the eye moves upward. The same principle works very well in home interiors. Try it out!

Blue seating and pastel throws in a room with light geometric walls

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Do The Math

Love bold colors but have no experience with them? An easy rule of thumb that you can follow is to divide your palette into dominant and supporting colors. Apportion 60% of the visible area to the main color, wallpaper is a great way to do this. Next, look into supporting hues that can balance the setting. Use this ‘counterweight’ for your upholstery, drapery and similar surfaces that make up 30 percent of the visible area. The remaining 10 percent can be used by accent colors, say in the form of cushions, lighting fixtures, wall art, and so on.

A light colored, whimsical bedroom

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Take Inspiration From Something You Own

You don’t have to search far and wide to pick a color palette that works for you. Get inspired by a carpet, painting, or even an outfit that you love! The perks of picking a color scheme from a well-composed image or print is that the legwork has already been done. Your decor simply has to match or complement the colors in question, and you’re good to go. You can use our peel and stick wallpaper and murals for this purpose. Find a design you love, and use it to drive the rest of the setting.

A child’s bedroom decorated in bold colors

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Don’t Reinvent The Wheel

You may be sick and tired of all the advice about using the color wheel to pick your color palette. While you don’t have to follow everything to a tee, knowing a thing or two about complementary colors can save you a lot of time. Colors that are diametrically opposite each other on the color wheel are known as complementary colors. Blue and orange, red and green, yellow and purple – you get the gist. These hues tend to work well together, and can help ensure that bright colors don’t get too overwhelming in your décor.

A blue dresser against a wall featuring a black and white geometric design

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Add Contrast

If you want to pick a color palette with different shades of the same color family, consider adding dark neutral hues for contrast. You could introduce black cabinetry to a red-toned kitchen, or dark wooden furniture to a dining space composed of bright yellow and orange tones. These dark colors will add character to your space by enhancing your main color palette and keeping things from getting monotonous.

A bedroom featuring light neutral colors

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Don’t Dismiss Minimalism

White, gray, beige and other neutral shades are just as much a part of the color spectrum as brighter hues like red, blue and green. Monochrome or neutral-toned spaces don’t have to be boring. You can add texture to liven them up, or introduce light pastel hints to warm things up or cool things down. Use a fabric or shiplap textured peel and stick wallpaper to spice up your pared-back, off-white room. Or pick a whimsical pastel wallpaper with a floral, geometric or abstract design to create a subtle accent wall.

Ready to have fun with color? Our fabulous peel and stick wallpaper collection makes it easy for you to pick a color palette that you and your guests will love. Get started by exploring our latest designs, and order a sample to find the best fit.