Wood is a precious resource! These days we are mixing and matching wood grains, wood stains, and wood surfaces to further personalize our environments. The use of ‘Green’ wood building materials bring new twists to traditional trim, cabinets, and flooring. If you are lucky enough to have lots of wonderful wood surfaces in your home, here are a few things to consider when you choose paint colors for your walls. Wood colors are warm and complex by nature. They contain various tones of yellow, red, orange, green, and purples within the grain. We cut, stain, and polish wood to bring out a rich dimension at both ends of the light and dark spectrum. To compliment wood choose paint colors from a warm palette or a cool palette. Choose a course. If you choose a warm green, then go for warm reds, warm yellows, warm blues, etc…if you choose a cool red, go with cool greens, cool yellows, cool neutrals—you get the picture! Use our Trend-Proof Palette and color process to decide the look you want.
Why is it important to choose a temperature course? Because in a room full of wood, wood is the lead in the play and paint colors are the supporting cast. This way you are controlling the ambiance. Shifting from cool to warm paint colors on walls competes with the wood. Determine the warm or cool paint colors that make the wood look richer and determine the level of contrast you want. Contrast also has an important role in color relationships. When you are choosing paint colors, the level of contrast between colors is just as important as the color itself. Devine Color has colors that create contrast without conflict so you can adjust the depth of colors to your taste without fear of making the “wrong” statement. After you go through our color process, write down the paint colors that are lighter than the lightest wood in the room, and paint colors that are darker than the darkest wood in the room. Stay away from colors that are “the same” depth.
If you are looking to paint warm wall colors next to wood trim surfaces, it is very important to choose a warm wall color that truly creates the desired effect you are looking for—warmth. If the wall color is too similar to the wood color, the wood can disappear. If the wall color has an unexpected undertone that clashes with the wood, the space can feel tense.
The yellow walls above have a green undertone giving the color its mustard look. (Please forgive me if you can’t see the green. Computer screens distort color and therefore it is hard to adjust the pictures to reflect the “actual” color.) Because of color similarities, you can see that the wood trim blends into the wall.
A lighter yellow than the wood with red undertones creates contrast the trim and harmony with the rest of the wood surfaces. For this look try Devine Maple, devine Straw, devinegreen: Chicken or Poppy. Devine has warm neutrals in our paint palettes that deliver the same effect. Take a look at Devine Peanut, Devine Custard, Devine Filbert, Devine Macadamia, devinegreen: Persian, Impala, Siamese.
Deeper warm colors compliment and sharpen wood surfaces with high contrast. Take a look at reds and oranges such as Devine Blush, Devine Dust, Ginger, Spice, devinegreen: Sarsaparilla, Orangutan, or Lobster.
You can contrast wood by painting the walls with cooler colors. These would typically be considered blues, purples, and greens. Even our cool colors and cool neutrals have an innate warmth to them that compliment wood. For this look try Devine Pecan, Devine Bison, Devine Cocoa, Devine Mocha, Devine Hazelnut, Devine Roast, Devine Green Tea, Devine Bavarian, devinegreen: Persian or Jasmine.
When you paint walls in-between wood trim, consider the amount of wall you are actually painting and do the math. If you haven’t already, read CAN LIGHT COLORS LIGHTEN A DARK ROOM . This article talks about our Devine Math on walls to help you decide how light or dark (the depth) a Devine color can be on your wall.
This dining room has little wall space between windows. Painting a richer color on the wall “mats” the view and features the wood. Try devinegreen: Sarsaparilla, Clover, Toucan, Jay, Devine Cabernet, Devine Bordeaux, Devine Georgette, Devine Spice, Devine Denim, Devine Shantung.
There are also other featured walls that can afford color drama when surrounded by open spaces and rich wood color. Once you decide on the paint colors you want and the color temperature you want to do, then the sky is the limit! The possibilities are endless and personal.