Modern Colour Schemes: 10 Lighter Shades
That Complement Contemporary Interiors

While some shy away from too much colour, a splash of something a tad different can transform any space. Using different tones is all about unleashing your personality and getting creative, but where on earth should you start?

Colour swatches
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Charlotte Grainger
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August 5, 2017

 

Well, in case you haven’t heard yet, summer 2017 is all about light and bright shades. That means that it’s time to say goodbye to your blank canvases and hello to something a little more interesting. What’s more, there are loads of modern colour schemes that complement the minimal, Scandi inspired home. In short, you’re certain to have your pick of all the tones.

So, if you’re struggling for some interior design inspiration, you’ve come to the right place. Let’s take a look at some awe-inspiring room schemes and how you can use light colour features to really breathe some life into them.

Rose

Feminine and sophisticated, the rose tone is an under appreciated one. This colour just oozes relaxation and harmony, which is why it could very well be the ideal tone for your home environment. When you used well, this particular one can create a zen-like atmosphere in any space of your abode.

Aptly using this colour is all about finding the right balance; the last thing you want is for the tone to dominate an area and create a sugary sweet aesthetic. Hence, you need to include some darker, contrasting colours to complete the interior.

 

Via That Nordic Feeling

 

While rose may not be one of the most popular paint colours for living rooms, here’s cold hard evidence from That Nordic Feeling that it can work well from time to time. A statement wall in this tone is a risky yet bold move and it can seriously pay off.

The use of a gallery wall here breaks up the monotony of the rose tone, providing a little white space. You should also note the use of metallic features here, which tend to work dazzlingly well with feminine tones.

 

Via Adairs

 

The same themes follow through into this next example of rose room schemes from Adairs. The black features contrast with the colour and create a finished complete look.

However, in this case, the backdrop of the room has been kept plain and simple, which has allowed the designer to pick out features in the tone. The medley of grey, rose, and white creates a soft summer centric style that everyone can appreciate.

Crisp White

There’s very little about the crisp white aesthetic that can go wrong. If you’re hoping to create a modern and at once minimal style interior, opting for the ‘blank canvas’ approach is certain to be the way forward.

There’s just one problem — at times, this colour choice lacks warmth and interest. So, what should you do? Well, as you will see in these next examples, it’s all about how you dress the space.

 

Via Stuff Dot

 

Natural daylight helps to reflect this look and bring a breezy, airy feel to the room. While you’re keeping your colour palette extremely plain here, be sure to experiment with your feature pieces. As Stuff Dot shows, a statement piece such as the dramatic light setting here, means that the room is still intriguing to look at.

And it’s not just about the lighting either. The deep colour tone of the flooring and popping green of the plant also serve to prevent this living space from feeling ‘cold’ or indeed ‘sterile.’

 

Via Interior Junkie

 

In a thoroughly modern living space like this one by Interior Junkie, it’s worth taking the time to include some variation in your materials. Introducing some metal, wood, and even brick to the space will give it an industrial chic vibe, which is very much on trend just now.

 

Egg Shell

While the name may not be the most inspiring in the world, you should never underestimate the power of egg shell. When you’re looking to uplift a space, this is one of the best modern colour schemes that there is.

Unassuming and yet approachable, the tone will help you to light up a room and create an inviting atmosphere. Take a look at a couple of examples here before you use this light and bright tone.

 

Via The Design Chaser

With its clean and crisp qualities, egg shell is a natural choice for the kitchen and dining room area of your home. However, you will likely want to avoid room schemes that over-use this tone; on the walls or even in their main features.

Choosing just one aspect of the space to highlight in the colour will help you avoid just this issue. In this example from The Design Chaser, the designer has used the shade for only the cupboard units and then added some complementary tones throughout the room.

 

Via Casinha Colorida

 

The use of a matt egg white paint here means that there is room to do pretty much anything you please within the space. Room schemes like this one from Casinha Colorida can be as experimental and different as you want them to be. What’s more, the deep black accent wall is a perfect contrasting, while not to OTT, element.

Mint

Who said that modern colour schemes couldn’t be fresh and lively? You don’t have to mute this one down — mint green is an altogether vibrant shade that deserves to be showcased in its own right. If you’re hoping to add a little va va voom into your home, you may just have found it.

 

Via My Scandinavian Home

 

Without a doubt, the kitchen is an obvious choice for room schemes such as this one, but you don’t want to send the colour into overdrive here. Instead, picking out the units in mint offers just the right amount of colour. The vibrant shade is enticing and gives a ‘clean’ vibe that suits this area of the home, as you can see in this example from My Scandinavian Home.

 

Via Design Ville

 

Moving into the living room, you may wish to introduce small accent pieces in this tone. Mint may not be a popular paint colour for living rooms, but that doesn’t mean it can’t play a part here too. The key here is finding a balancing tone, such as grey or black, to ensure that the space still has a sophisticated finish.

The green cushions, along with other accents shown by Design Ville here, work as thin slices of colour against an otherwise plain background. Notice how the tones aren’t exactly the same, and yet complement one another regardless.

 

Lemon

As uplifting as it is, few people warm to the colour yellow. There’s something about this tone that many find abrasive, which is why you don’t see it so much in interior design.

Despite this fact, there are ways that you can make use of the lemon tone without it dictating the rest of your design style. By including it as part of your modern colour schemes, rather than as the central theme, you might just pull it off in style.

 

Via Ideal Home

Including a lemon statement piece, such as the chair pictured here from Ideal Home, is a savvy way of bringing a little light to any space. The colour does not tend to work too well with an array of tones, but can look fabulous in a plain black or white space. Think of it as a minor accent, not the main event.

 

Via Paper & Stitch

 

If you’re feeling a little more daring in the lemon department, why not let it take over one of your main room features? You could include a bright feature wall, a statement furniture piece, or even some striking artwork. Needless to say, there are many utterly genius ways to approach this colour in your home, show by Paper & Stitch here. The key is not to be afraid to just go for it.

Lavender

Lavender is often shied away from in the interior design world, but there are ways in which you can find a room colour combination that works here. Within a contemporary home, these tones can work so long as you’re willing to use them in moderation.

 

Via Immy + Indi

Of course, the most obvious choice to go along with lavender is greys and whites. Make sure that you mix the colours up a little here so that it doesn’t appear to uniform and strict.

(The last thing you want is to have to stick to the scheme for years to come!)

In many modern colour schemes, people feel as though they need one strong and bold colour. However, in combining a few paler shades, the effect can be just stunning as you can see here from Immy + Indi.

 

Via Oh Eight Oh Nine

 

Much of the time, pretty, female-centric room schemes tend to fit the bedroom better than you may imagine. While you may not want to go for a full-on floral backdrop, including some flowers in vases that complement the purple tones may be enough to do the trick – just look at this example from Oh Eight Oh Nine.

 

Peach

Many moons ago, peach was the go-to colour for interior design. The problem with that was that room schemes could often look washed out and feeble; the lack of definition meant that they quickly looked outdated.

If you do fancy including some rich peach tones in your decorating, though, pairing them with a deep colour, like black or grey, will make all the difference. The two tones juxtaposition perfectly and create a dynamic, daring look.

 

Via Mad About The House

 

This elegant and striking look is ideal for a home study; it is all about focus. The dark and light room colour combination is enough to balance out the peach tone and transform the room. Including some bold features, such as the the lamp and chair, completes this visual, as shown here by Mad About The House.

 

Via FY Interior Designs

 

A similar effect can be achieved in the kitchen area. In this example from FY Interior Designs, you can see that the designer has used painted exposed brick as the focal point of the room. Black, grey, and brown make up the rest of the room, and yet each tone complements the other. Exposed brick has very much come back into mode in the last few years, but this is a new twist on a trendy, urban look.

Soft Lime

Much like the peach tone, lime green is a tricky one to use within your home or, as you will see, your bedroom. The secret ingredient that is certain to tie the entire space together is the conflicting colour. It has to be visually striking so that the room looks inviting and relatively masculine.

 

Via Steve Domoney Architecture

 

Lime and concrete may not seem like a typical combination, and yet Steve Domoney has shown it could be worth trying for yourself. The vibrant lime green backsplash in this industrial style kitchen really pops against the minimalist background.

 

Via Benjamin Moore

 

This next room from Benjamin Moore follows the same tone, however against a black background instead. Here, the dark tone works as a frame for the space, giving it definition and sophistication. What more could you want?

Bright Orange

Can you imagine some splashes of bright orange in your home? Yes, this fun and friendly tone is at the very heart of modern colour schemes and we cannot get enough of it.

Of course, you will want to use this one in moderation; sometimes less really is more. Accessorising with the tone against a rather plain background is the way forward. Here are just a couple of quirky examples.

 

Via Curate & Display

 

A simple shag rug could be enough to make a statement in your living room. This is an excellent way to use the colour tone in your home without it taking over the entire space. Notice how the cushion on the sofa mimics the tone here from Curate & Display. Small details like this are what make the look feel polished.

 

Via Office Snapshots

 

In the same respect, you can make use of modern colour schemes through your furnishings too – this industrial office from Office Snapshots shows just that. By keeping the rest of the room minimal shades of grey, the designer has constructed an effortlessly stylish aesthetic.

 

Grey

Grey works as a great base colours for many rooms in your home from the kitchen to the bedroom. Much like the white or beige tones, this one is all about variation and spicing things up with unique features. Don’t be afraid to work with a whole array of tones to make your ideal room colour combination.

 

Via Top Inspired

 

In the bedroom, you can easily use a little of the lavender tone and grey together. This is one of those modern colour schemes that won’t be going anywhere anytime soon. Using different textures and features in the space means that it’s never for even the slightest minute boring. Just a beautifully created space from Top Inspired.

 

Via A Sweet Afternoon

 

Finally, the wood and grey combo is one that you don’t want to overlook here. These subtle tones seem to work together to give a pale and relaxed vibe to any space. Use as many different wooden pieces as you feel; there are really no rules as far as this one goes!

 

 

So, what do you think? Which pale colour shades will you be using in your home?

 

Charlotte Grainger

Charlotte Grainger

Charlotte is a freelance writer living in Sheffield, UK. Her interests include gender issues, kittens and the Gilmore Girls. In her spare time, she also writes poetry and drinks copious amounts of red wine and coffee.