Interior Trim Colors

There is a whole world of interior trim colors - other than white.

Are you ready to try something new for painting your home? Then let's explore the different color options!

When it's time to choose interior paint colors, most homeowners spend a lot of hours choosing the right paint color for the walls, but completely ignore the woodwork in their homes.

Violet trim in a purple-based room color scheme

"Ignore" is another way of saying they paint the doors, windows and trim white by default, without even giving it a second thought.

But did you know that sometimes it makes more sense to use an accenting interior trim color?

Let's study the following rooms where the woodwork has been painted a decorative, non-white color.

Maybe this will give you some ideas and reasons for painting your own home differently than everybody else!

Examples of Decorative
Interior Trim Colors:

Let's start on the "safe" end of interior trim color options - off white and cream.

Even though they are almost white, these shades look much less harsh and stark than pure white, especially when paired with dark wall colors such as navy blue or deep red:

Warm cream trim color with deep red walls

But even mid-tone wall colors can benefit from cream and off-white shades used on the woodwork, if you want the result to be softer and warmer, like the color scheme of this reading room in the photo below:

Off white trim with sage green walls

In a historic home where surfaces look old, pure white trim will look out of place - it will scream "fake" and "plastic" in the period setting.

For a more authentic and coherent look, choose interior trim colors that look somewhat old, too. For example, antique white, old lace, weathered white or even beige would make much better choices.

Weathered white trim in a historic home

See how organic this gorgeous antique woodwork looks painted in beige, even in the context of such bright, trendy colors?

Beige antique woodwork paired with bright yellow and pink wall colors

And your home doesn't need to be Victorian for beige trim to work!

Sometimes the architectural detail in a home makes enough of a statement on its own, even without a contrasting color to set it off:

Beige trim in an 80s home

Here's an example of a beautifully executed monochromatic palette, also featuring beige woodwork.

In this case, a darker shade of beige was used on the trim to give a sense of structure and definition to the light neutral room:

Beige woodwork in an all-neutral room color scheme

And it doesn't take long to figure out why the owners of this kitchen chose beige for painting the woodwork.

The kitchen cabinetry already has this color, so continuing with it seems only natural.

Notice how the beige trim embraces the entire kitchen area and creates a sense of flow:

Beige trim in an open concept kitchen area

But enough about the neutrals! Now let's see how "real" hues can also make successful interior trim colors.

Take a look at this light yellow trim example: the unusual color was chosen to bridge the saturated yellow cathedral ceiling with the warm brown wall color:

Light yellow trim between a bright yellow ceiling and brown walls

Here, the trim looks light enough to appear conventional, but the yellow color creates a warmer and cozier color scheme in the room:

Yellow trim paired with warm green wall color

In the photo below, the yellow trim works as part of the monochromatic paint color palette:

Example of light yellow trim and deeper yellow wall color

And this is another example of light yellow trim in an all-yellow room color scheme:

All-yellow paint and decor example

Here, the yellow on the trim is a darker shade than that on the walls, to bring forth the woodwork in an unexpected way:

Darker yellow trim with lighter yellow wall color

This butter yellow trim helps envelope the room in warmth and support the rich wall and furniture colors:

Butter yellow trim in a rich, warm colored decor

A deeper yellow sets off this beautiful front door and lowers the walls in this foyer space, welcoming all who enter with its warmth and comfort:

Deep yellow front door in a hallway painted in different shades of the same hue

This earthy yellow shade works well as a trim color within this rich analogous kitchen color scheme:

Mustard yellow trim in an earthy kitchen color palette

When choosing interior paint colors for a simplistic decor, the mantra should be "less is more".

Here, the wall color of the front room has been used for painting the woodwork in the adjoining back room.

The result is clean and simple, and the choice of colors gentle and calming:

Peach colored trim in a minimalist decor

Imagine the window and trim in this room painted white!

It would have broken the flow of the monochromatic color palette in this room and added yet another element to a space that's already rich with texture and detail:

Apricot colored trim in a monochromatic room theme

But let's turn up the heat even more with our unusual interior trim color ideas!

Here you can see a bathroom with a bold orange window - that's how easy it is to make a statement even in a most boring room with just paint and color:

Orange bathroom window against apricot colored walls

In the example below, the trim color repeats the wall color of the adjoining room, connecting the spaces while also allowing variation:

Orange-red trim with tangerine-orange walls

Here, the red doors serve as a focal point in this richly colored and decorated living space:

Red double doors in a richly colored and decorated rooms

And in this kitchen, the light pink trim color really adds to the gentle, romantic, shabby chic vibe:

Pink trim in a kitchen/dining area

The pale pink crown molding and window provide a delicate but sufficient contrast to the salmon colored wall paneling in this monochromatic bedroom:

Light pink trim in a romantic all-pink bedroom

But pink trim is not only for feminine themes!

The living room below is a good example of how even such a stereotypically girly color can be incorporated into an earthy and grounded decor:

Dirty pink trim in an earthy room color scheme

Now in this case, the decorator chose to paint the trim the same deep pink as the walls, to allow the furniture and wall art to be the main focus:

Deep pink trim and wall color with contrasting decor elements

And who would have thought that purple could also make a valid interior trim color?

But the decorator was clearly able to pull it off in this modern bedroom design:

Purple trim with same color walls in a modern style bedroom

Tinting a pure white trim paint with a bit of the wall color is a great and easy way to color coordinate your paint palette, as you can see here:

Blue walls with blue-tinted trim create a flowing paint color scheme

And in the following example, 2 close shades of light violet were used to set off all the woodwork in the room against the pale lavender wall background, giving the architectural detail even more definition:

Lavender color woodwork with pale violet walls and yellow furniture and decor

In this bold colored room, the trim is painted several different colors - some to match the walls, some to add to the color blocking effect going on:

Multi-colored trim in a room painted in a color blocking style

See what a difference it makes when you use a trim color that's related to the walls?

The effect is more flowing and harmonious than pure white would have been:

Dusty blue walls with pale blue decorative trim in a classy decor

Whenever you use a non-white color on woodwork and put some extra thought into the overall paint color scheme, your effort never goes unnoticed:

Non-white trim shows extra thought put into the paint color palette

Non-white interior trim colors are also another great way to add variety to your room color scheme, rather than only with accent decor elements:

Green walls and aqua blue trim in a bathroom

If you have really beautiful doors, windows and other woodwork in your home, consider non-white interior trim colors to highlight those features. This is especially true if the woodwork is the most special or interesting part of the room.

For instance, the carved baseboards, doors and window trim are obviously the star of the show in the photo below, and have been accentuated with a contrasting color. The beautiful woodwork now looks like a jewel in a frame:

Turquoise blue walls with deeper color woodwork in a living room

Here, the decorator wanted to minimize the paint color palette, while still keeping some contrast between the walls and windows:

Green walls with tinted window trim in a dining room

And this is another example of how a green-based color scheme can look varied and interesting when you use a few different shades throughout the room:

Different shades of green used on the walls and woodwork

The blue and green paint color combination looks serene and provides enough color to support the all neutral furnishings and decor in the room below:

Blue and green paint color combination in a living room

And here, a little tropical paradise was created indoors by using an aqua-green paint color palette:

Aqua green paint color scheme in an island themed breakfast corner

The chartreuse trim in the following example "marries" the two very different wall colors and brings out the yellow-green tones in the live plants:

Chartreuse trim with clay colored walls

The round window makes a statement on its own, so the homeowners chose to paint the trim a darker shade of the wall color rather than a contrasting white, to keep the focus inside the room, on the sitting area:

Yellow-green walls, window and trim in a dining room

Sometimes pure white can be an intruder. This room has a deep and saturated color scheme going on, without a hint of white anywhere. Introducing white to this decor would have only added one more color to an already complete palette, and would've looked totally out of place and irrelevant.

Instead, the decorator re-used one of the existing colors and created a room color scheme that flows. Notice how the room seems to continue past the windows into the green yard? White trim would have interrupted this effect:

Emerald colored woodwork with green faux-finished walls

Here you can see again how the green trim color blends beautifully with the muted greenery outside, bringing the nature in and almost making it part of the room:

Earthy green paint color palette

The cool brown trim in the living room below adds to the rustic look and feel of the space, and doesn't clash with the view outside:

Cool brown woodwork in a rustic decor

Rather than lightening up the yellow and orange color scheme with white trim (and making it look more youthful as a result), the decorator chose brown for the trim to ground it and create a more adult, autumn-inspired palette:

Brown trim with yellow and orange wall colors

In this bathroom, the brown painted trim is mimicking stained wood, coordinating well with the textured walls and country-theme decor:

Dark brown trim mimicking stained wood in a rustic bathroom

Here, the brown woodwork is helping keep the room color scheme earthy and uninterrupted:

Brick colored walls and brown trim create uninterrupted flow

And a similar example with even darker trim:

Espresso colored woodwork with medium brown walls in a living room

The dark brown trim is adding necessary punctuation and structure to this all-neutral formal dining room:

Dark brown trim in an all-neutral room adds structure and punctuation

Here, the blue and brown combination creates a perfect amount of contrast and definition in this minimalistic room decor:

Blue and brown paint color palette in a minimalist decor

And in this case, the brown windows are echoing and adding to the geometric decor in the room:

Example of how brown paint and decor can work together

The geometry of the windows is apparent even without white trim, so it was omitted in the photo below:

Brown accent wall with same color trim

This kitchen features black windows and brown ceiling beams, to reinforce the unusual mix of traditional and modern styles used alongside each other in the same space:

Black and brown trim color with warm neutral walls in a kitchen

And finally, look how stunning this choice of color is!

Each area has the trim repeating the wall color, keeping the focus on the space rather than the individual elements within it:

Black, blue and green walls with same color woodwork

As you can see, there are plenty of reasons to choose non-white interior trim colors.

Plus, non-white colors are often more practical - they don't show dirt and wear as much.

And don't worry, if you paint your woodwork blue and start having withdrawal symptoms, you can always go back to white!

Paint Color Cheat Sheets
Paint Color Cheat Sheets

See Also:

Tuscan Paint Colors

Tan Paint: How to Dress It Up

Gray Paint: the Color of Sophistication

Explore Paint Colours for Your Home


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