Navigating paint colors for small spaces can feel daunting. After all, how do you balance personal preference with buzzy 2023 paint color trends? Whether the goal is a moody mudroom or a vibrant lounge, here are designer-approved paint colors, tips and takeaways for transforming small rooms into stylish jewel boxes.
It’s all about the accents.
The color: Sherwin Williams’ Jasper
The tip: All white will never go out of style—just remember to bring those other color elements in. I will never tire of a dark and moody strong hue.
—Hillary Stamm, HMS Interiors | Manhattan Beach, California
Add luxury with jewel tones.
The color: Benjamin Moore’s Salamander
The takeaway: A deep, jewel-toned green helped this bedroom space feel cozier—especially against the white headboard and carpet. At night, it’s the perfect, moody hue.
—Kathleen Walsh, Kathleen Walsh Interiors | New York, New York
Venture to the dark side.
The color: Benjamin Moore’s Soot
The takeaway: Just because a space is on the smaller side, doesn’t mean you can’t take risks. Where some may flock to lighter shades, one of my favorite applications is grounding a room in a darker paint color and pairing that with neutral accessories and details to really make the room pop.
—Leslie Murphy, Murphy Maude Interiors | Memphis, Tennessee
Go all in on color.
The color: Benjamin Moore’s Peony
The takeaway: There’s a tiny (like, 7 feet by 7 feet) living room in Nob Hill, San Francisco, that I painted bright magenta pink. We committed fully to color—from the walls to the sofa to the floral rug—and in doing so, it gave this small, not-very-sunny hosting space such a vibrancy.
—Noz Nozawa, Noz Design | San Francisco
Embrace nature’s vibrant side.
The color: Benjamin Moore’s Very Green
The tip: We have had incredible success with jewel-toned greens in small spaces. Because it relates back to nature, green is bright, without being overwhelming, while exuding vitality.
—Emilie Munroe, Studio Munroe | San Francisco
Be strategic with color pairings.
The color: Farrow & Ball’s Carriage Green No. 94
The takeaway: Using a dark green paint color in this small bathroom allowed us to blur the lines of the room and made the room feel more expansive, since it’s harder to see where the corners come together. We paired it with a creamy tile to keep it from feeling overly cavernous.
—Virginia Toledo, Toledo Geller | Franklin Lakes, New Jersey
Use color to bridge rooms.
The color: Farrow & Ball Studio Green (No. 93)
The tip: I used an emerald quartzite throughout a recent kitchen project and wanted to complement the green as much as possible. Farrow & Ball Studio Green (No. 93) ties to the green and black stone in this small breakfast nook.
—Elisa Baran Tréan, Elisa Baran, LLC | New York, New York