Thinking about Walls: Yellow

Yellow can brighten up a bathroom or kitchen, or make a bedroom seem extra sunny. But it is the most difficult paint color to get right. The wrong choice can make a room gold instead of yellow, or turn a space into egg yolks rather than lemon. If you want to bring yellow into your home, take these steps first.

Go lighter: Yellow dominates a room much more than you would expect. Whatever tone you want, choose one at least two shades lighter. The color strips available at paint stores make this easy. Don’t worry that it will be too light. Yellow reflects off every wall and the color naturally intensifies.

Test test test: Buy a sample of two or three possible yellows. Paint poster boards, one in each color, and try them close to each other. If one of the yellows has an orange or green cast, you’ll be able to tell thanks to the contrast. Choose the purest yellow you can find. Also, put the painted posters on every wall of the room and then see which works best. Yellow changes its mood depending upon the type of light, so check in daylight and artificial light.

Combine with white: Don’t be tempted to use too much yellow. Paint the ceiling white and don’t add yellow cabinets or furniture. Too much yellow quickly takes over a room. White areas help the yellow look brighter without becoming overwhelming.

Yellow can be gorgeous or a real problem. Doing your homework at the start will give you a space that uses yellow at its best.

2 thoughts on “Thinking about Walls: Yellow

  1. Hi! I just stumbled on your blog today. I love your dgesin style! You have literally inspired me to go to dgesin school! In the last year, I have found a passion in decorating. I stay up sometimes all hours of the night looking at magazines and searching blogs. Speaking of cabinets, I really want to paint my kitchen cabinets. My walls are a barn red. They were like that when we moved in and I kept them because they were kind of nice and I was pregnant. What color cabinets would go with red walls? Is white the only color? I love love green, but that would look like Christmas! What would you suggest? Thanks!

  2. Aremi,

    Thanks so much for the comment. There are so many cabinet color options you could pair with red walls; white is definitely not the only color. If you love green, you could paint your cabinets a very soft, subtle green. A pale yellow might be a good option as well. If you’re replacing your cabinets, you could try natural wood cabinets. Our best advice would be to go to your local paint store, and get their input, as well. Try out a few different shades of the color you choose on the cabinets to help narrow your selection down. You could come in to one of our browse nights to speak with a designer. Great question! Have a wonderful day!

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