When settling into a  new place, picking a color palette has to be one of the most intimidating tasks that stands before you. Furniture is much easier to change up and doesn’t require as much coordination from room to room as color does. As such, the following guide should help you in picking an appropriate color palette for your home.


Q: Where do I start painting?

A: Deciding where to start painting your home isn’t an exact science. You have a couple options to choose from. Option 1 would be to start with your living room, presumably the biggest room in your home. Living rooms are generally an open space, so you can more easily coordinate adjacent rooms to match the living room. Option 2 would be to alternatively start with the room that you envision with the boldest color. That way, you at least know that the adjacent rooms will be colors that are less bold.

Q: What color(s) should I use?

Happy woman paint wall at home.

A: Deciding what color to paint your home is a big step. Neutral colors are automatically easier to pair with than warm or cool colors, so picking neutral colors will make assembling the rest of your color palette easier on you.

Q: I’ve decided on the color for my starting room. What’s the next step?

A: After you’ve decided on your starting room, paint adjacent rooms with similar colors. This is a safe way to ensure that colors won’t clash when you’re transitioning from room to room. If one room (or multiple rooms) are visible from a room, make sure the colors work together. This is a good reminder since we can often think of doors as separations between spaces. However, unless doors are opaque and/or are shut all the time, you will be forced to see the color of one room from another, and it will not be aesthetically pleasing if they don’t work together. This is especially pertinent when working with an open-space floor plan.

Q: How do I pick the color palette when painting two separate floors?

A: If you have two floors, you can pick a different color palette for each. Doing so doesn’t just create an different atmosphere when you’re on the first floor versus the second floor. It also makes the project of selecting a color palette for your home less intimidating. Since one floor usually isn’t visible when you’re on the other, you don’t have to worry as much about the colors clashing.

Q: What about stairways and hallways?

A: Keep these spaces as neutral as possible, sticking to colors like white and grey. Again, keep in mind the rooms adjacent to these spaces. If you decide on anything other than white, make sure the color flows from room to room.

Q: I believe I have a color palette. What now?

A: Bring home some sample colors and, on a blank sheet of paper or floor plan drawing of your home, paint these colors side by side and take a look at the palette as a whole.  There should be a sense of cohesion among the palette as a whole.