No matter what your aesthetic is, there's a palette to help you achieve your dream oasis.
Design-wise, bedrooms are often a forgotten space for many people—if guests never have to see it, the decor falls pretty low on the priority list. This may mean that anything that lands in the room is an afterthought and nothing is cohesive. One of the easiest ways to tie everything together though, and instantly give it that designer touch (without the designer budget), is to establish a bedroom color scheme. Sticking to two, three, or even four colors in a space not only looks good, but it also helps create a calm, serene vibe, because let's be real—a room with a rainbow of random colors is fun but not exactly relaxing!
To help you find inspiration, we gathered some of our favorite sleeping quarters with unique and classic color combos done right. You'll find a variety of design aesthetics, plus ways of incorporating pops of color beyond paint. Scroll on to discover designer-suggested bedroom color schemes.
Navy, Rust, and Gray
For a bedroom with cocoon-like vibes, choose a darker wall color like this room's deep blue paint, selected by designer Ali Henrie. The shade, which is Benjamin Moore's Knoxville Gray, works well with warm accents, like the rust-colored linens, wood nightstand, and the vintage equine-themed artwork that, according to Henrie, inspired the room. (The horse's chestnut coat clearly informed some of the hues in the space!)
Red, Rust, Creams, and Black
They say you shouldn't paint a bedroom red, but no one ever said anything about incorporating smaller red accents. Designer Ginny Macdonald did just that in this room, and it works because of the creamy white paint color and drapery to help neutralize the palette. The vanilla base (and we mean that in a good way!) means you can switch up the small pieces easily, so if you're over the red, you can easily switch it out and experiment with a new color.
Yellow and Gray
U.K.-based designer Pandora Taylor chose to highlight happy yellow in this bedroom color scheme but tempered it with neutrals. Sunny curtains and a lemony coverlet are paired with a foliage-inspired, gray wallpaper by Sandberg and creamy, scalloped headboard with golden trim. Doing this maintains the space's serene, sophisticated aura and prevents the room from skewing too juvenile, which sometimes happens with yellow.
Blue and Pink
Designer Pandora Taylor coated this other bedroom in a soft pink color (Light Peachblossom by Little Greene), and balanced it with a dark blue headboard and light fixture, and powder blue textiles. The blush bolster pillow features a navy blue fringe that ties the palette together.
Blue, Burgundy, and Brown
An out-of-the-box color combo is this sky blue, burgundy, and brown palette showcased in this guest bedroom by Ryia Jose, the designer behind Kin & Kasa and former Real Simple Home star. She DIYed the entire space—from the panel molding, wallpaper, ceiling beadboard, and chair rail down to the bed upholstery, lamp shade, and curtains! The calming blue colors (Waterloo and Blustery Sky, both by Sherwin-Williams) are given extra warmth thanks to the brown shades of the upholstery, vintage kantha quilt and art, and jute rug.
Related: Check Out Our 2023 Real Simple Home!
Peach, Teal, and Green
The peachy-pink hue of this bedroom offers a warm, calming glow, and the natural textures in the space, like the jute rug, wood ceiling planks, and woven roman shades boost the laidback, casual atmosphere. In this bedroom's color scheme, dheerier colors like teal via the coverlet and green, by way of the custom bench from The Inside, prevent the room from looking one-note.
Lavender, Gray, and Black
Lavender is probably one of the dreamiest colors, making it perfect for a bedroom. If drenching a room in the shade is not your jam though, use it on a focal point, like how designer Christina Kim did in her own bedroom with this lavender headboard. The pale shade, according to Kim, is "modern, soft and a little unexpected." To enhance the room's relaxing ambience, Kim installed a neutral wallpaper. "It's a soft gray grasscloth from York Wallcoverings that I used to make things feel more cozy. Grasscloth is great to take the echo out of a large room." Smart! The black campaign nightstand is (ironically) the bold pop of "color" here—it's technically a safe choice but it still makes a statement because it contrasts against the other muted colors.
Green, Peach, and Rust
A wallpaper mural is another way of communicating your bedroom color scheme. The gorgeous one shown here in this room designed by Clara Jung of Banner Day Interiors is from Schumacher, and it really drives home the mostly-green theme of the space. The foliage depicted introduces a peaceful, natural element, and the velvet, emerald green bed from CB2 grounds the room. To break up all the green though, peach and rust-colored decorative pillows serve as accents. (Fun fact: Jung is another Real Simple Home alum!)
Blue, Dusty Rose, Creams, and Yellow
After dousing her primary bedroom in this chalky blue paint (Debonair by Sherwin-Williams), Emily Henderson was a little concerned it was too much of a good thing. So to balance it out, she worked in other colors through soft goods, like the cream bedding, dusty rose throw, and golden yellow decorative pillow. Oversize art, a giant paper pendant, and skylights help break up large expanses of blue too.
Blue and Yellow
This guest room proves your sleeping quarters can be a serene retreat and a happy, upbeat, colorful haven. Designed by Abbie Naber of a Naber Design, the cheery room was inspired by Palm Springs. "We included vintage lights and nightstands for a touch of warmth and imperfection, and chose bright color hues for our linen bedding," says Naber. While the sunny sheets could be considered bold, the gray headboard and light blue wallpaper from Hygge & West mellows out the brightness.
Green, Blue, and Neutrals
Here's a low-lift, high-impact idea: If you're not totally opposed to the idea of repainting, but don't want to do the work of an entire room, brush a new color onto just the trim and molding of your space, like how designer Katie Davis cleverly did here. The soft green (Rockwood Jade by Sherwin-Williams) is a fresh pop against the white walls. Davis layered in some blue accents, like the antique lamp and striped Pottery Barn quilt, along with warm, brown neutrals like the wicker lampshade, woven window treatment, and decorative pillow. Ultimately, the room has plenty of color but it's not overwhelming.
Pink and Green
Once again, if you'd prefer not to do anything to your walls when you're thinking of a bedroom palette, you can totally still work in some color through other means. Green and pink are the main stars of this bedroom's color scheme by Katie Davis, but they're highlighted through the drapery pattern and beautiful headboard.
Blue and Orange
Natalie Papier of Home Ec. (the third Real Simple Home designer on this list!) technically created this space for a friend's young daughter, but the colors are so captivating and delightful that any adult would be thrilled to hit the hay in a room like this. While the zingy orange accents are on the more daring side, she maintains the room's cozy atmosphere by opting for a saturated blue shade on the ceilings (Revel Blue by Sherwin-Williams) and a matching graphic wallpaper from Belarte Studio. Orange and blue might seem like they'd never work in a real life setting, but they do and art theory can explain why: Blue and orange are completely opposite each other on the color wheel, but this means, counterintuitively, that they're actually complementary colors.
Purple, Yellow, and Peach
This little bed cove was carved out a walk-in closet that designer Hollie Velten-Lattrell transformed into a book nook, and she really pushed her purple color scheme in the space to create the ultimate dreamscape. The custom woodwork was painted a lavender shade with gray undertones (Brassica by Farrow & Ball), but the peach bedding and decorative yellow pillow breaks up some of the purple. (Hot tip: A small, gray kitten also won't hurt the color palette either!)
Peacock Blue, Black, and Burgundy
If you're going for a moody atmosphere in your bedroom, then take a cue from designer Elizabeth Young, who blanketed this room in a hand-painted wallcovering from Porter Teleo as a way to bring color into the space without a ton of bold pattern. It also adds a nice, velvety texture to the walls. The black doors and a wine-colored throw blanket elevate the room even further.
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