When decorating a living room, the curtain colors you choose can make all the difference in pulling the space together into a cohesive, stylish look. With so many options, it can be tricky to determine which shades and patterns will complement your existing furnishings and wall colors. Follow our expert tips to effortlessly mix and match curtain colors for a beautifully curated living room.
First and foremost, take stock of the current colors and textures in your living room before selecting any curtain fabrics. Scan the space for the boldest accent colors found in furniture, pillows, rugs, and artwork. Pay attention to the undertones of these shades–are they warm or cool tones? Identifying these dominant hues will provide a helpful starting point for choosing curtain colors that will tie everything together.
Select an Accent Color From the Room to Incorporate
Once you’ve determined the most prominent accent colors in the living room, consider incorporating one or two of those shades into your curtain palette. This provides harmony without directly matching your curtains to the furnishings. For example, if you have a navy blue sofa, bring in that same navy blue as an accent stripe or panel on cream curtains. Or if your rug has shades of rusty orange, use a similar burnt orange hue in the curtain fabric.
This technique ensures your curtain choice feels cohesive with the existing look, while still adding a new dynamic. The accent color provides that critical bridge that pulls the whole space together. When in doubt, opt for accent colors drawn straight from your living room’s decor.
Take a Contrasting Color Approach
Sometimes the boldest curtain color combinations come from choosing hues that contrast strongly with your current furniture and wall colors. The key is focusing on complementary color pairs that have a strong visual impact when combined. Classic pairings like navy and white, yellow and gray, or green and red never fail when it comes to dramatic living rooms.
Don’t be afraid to take color risks with your curtain choice to create an eclectic, artistic aesthetic. Pair rich purple curtain panels with lime green and orange throw pillows. Use bright yellow curtains to complement a deep charcoal sofa. The contrast provides bold definition between furnishings and your window treatments.
Best Contrasting Curtain Colors
Here are some of our favorite contrasting curtain color combinations for gorgeous living rooms:
- Navy blue curtains with burnt orange sofa and accents
- Forest green curtains with off-white walls and neutral furniture
- Mustard yellow curtains with a gray sectional sofa
- Brick red curtains with turquoise accent chairs or pillows
Match Neutral Walls With Curtain Color
For living rooms with neutral wall colors like off-white, beige, or light tan, matching your curtains directly to the exact wall shade can create a seamless, soothing look. The uniform color palette minimizes contrast for a calm, unified space. This works especially well in small living rooms, where too much contrast can feel busy and overwhelming.
To prevent a matching curtain and wall color palette from becoming dull, incorporate plenty of textures and patterns. Layer in accents like woven wood blinds, sheer panels, and textured pillows to add visual interest. This allows the neutral base to feel warm and enveloping rather than flat.
Curtain Color Ideas for Neutral Walls
- White or ivory curtains with off-white walls
- Beige linen curtains paired with light tan walls
- Cream patterned curtains complementing buff-colored walls
Use Curtains to Add a Pop of Color
For a bold, vibrant accent, use curtains in a dramatic color that contrasts sharply with your wall color and furniture palette. Typically, brighter, saturated shades have the strongest impact. Opt for red, emerald, cobalt, or magenta curtains to instantly enliven a subdued space.
When using curtains to add a pop of color, restraint is key. Opt for solid curtains in the accent hue paired with simple, neutral furnishings. Limit yourself to one statement curtain color so the room doesn’t become chaotic. And consider hanging your bright curtains outside the window frame so the wall color still shows through for balance.
Best Accent Colors for Curtains
- Citrus orange
- Lime green
- Crimson red
- Royal purple
- Turquoise blue
Use Light Curtains to Visually Expand Small Spaces
Strategic curtain colors can go a long way towards making a small living room feel more spacious and airy. Light and bright shades naturally open up and expand smaller rooms that can otherwise easily feel cramped or cluttered.
When dealing with a petite living room, steer clear of dark, saturated curtain colors like black, navy, or chocolate brown. Instead opt for soft neutrals like cream, very pale gray, and dove white. Sheer linen or lightly patterned lace curtains also minimize the visual weight of window treatments in small spaces.
Best Curtain Colors for Small Living Rooms
- Crisp white
- Dove gray
- Buttery yellow
- Soft champagne
Choose Energizing Curtain Colors for Productive Spaces
Make the most out of a home office or productivity nook located off of your living room by opting for energizing curtain colors. Bright shades of emerald, scarlet, turquoise, and yellow create an optimistic, cheerful mood. These stimulating colors encourage wakefulness and concentration compared to darker, sleepier hues.
Boost motivation in your work-from-home zone by pairing vivid patterned curtains with neutral walls and furniture. Keep everything else simple and decluttered so the eye is drawn straight to the windows dressed in your vibrant curtain print of choice.
Energizing Curtain Color Ideas for Productivity
- Sunshine yellow
- Grass green
- Sky blue
- Coral red
Choose Soothing, Neutral Curtains for Relaxation
For living rooms meant for rest and relaxation, consider using soft, neutral curtain colors to create a peaceful ambiance. Light beiges, warm grays, buttery yellows, and creamy ivories engender a soothing, welcoming feel. These muted earth tones encourage you to unwind and de-stress.
Pair your relaxing neutral curtains with cashmere throws, woven textiles, and softly glowing lighting. Avoid bold prints or stark contrasts for maximum tranquility. Instead, opt for subtle layering of natural linen and cotton textures paired with your neutral curtain choice.
Soothing Curtain Colors for Relaxation
- Warm sand
- Soft dove gray
- Buttery yellow
Consider Hiring an Interior Designer
If you’re struggling to settle on the perfect curtain color scheme for your living room, consider hiring a professional interior designer. Experienced designers know how to expertly analyze an existing space and choose colors that will unify the look and feel.
When meeting with potential designers, be sure to ask about their process for selecting coordinating colors and patterns. Many will create a mood board or digital rendering to give you a preview of their proposed design. Make sure to communicate your personal style and any color preferences upfront.
While hiring a designer requires an investment, their guidance can save you from expensive curtain mistakes. Plus, they handle all installation and styling details, saving you precious time and energy.
Most Popular Curtain Color Trends
Certain curtain color palettes stand the test of time as perennial favorites when it comes to living room window treatments. Currently, we’re seeing a revival of dramatic dark colors like inky navy, charcoal gray, and chocolate brown paired with cozy textured fabrics. For a more relaxed look, natural linen and cotton curtains are also widely embraced.
While trends come and go, choose classics with longevity in mind. Opt for muted solids over busy prints to avoid quickly dating your space. Seek timelessness over following the latest fad.
Timeless Curtain Color Classics
- Creamy white
- Warm tan
- Dove gray
- Navy blue
Take Calculated Color Risks
Don’t let color fears hold you back from selecting the perfect curtains to elevate your living room. While neutrals play it safe, calculated color risks often yield dramatic results. Introduce shades outside your comfort zone by limiting them to accents like curtains or throw pillows.
If still unsure, order fabric swatches online to see how colors interact with your existing furnishings. Many designer brands offer free digital visualization tools as well to preview options. Take bold risks to realize your dream living room.
With some forethought and strategic planning, selecting cohesive curtain colors for your living room doesn’t have to be an intimidating process. Keep the existing style and color palette in mind, and identify opportunities to unify the space through smart accent colors. Whether opting for vivid contrast or soothing neutrals, let your curtains enhance and harmonize with your furnishings.
Approach the process thoughtfully, but don’t let indecision stall you from giving your living room the stylish window treatments it deserves. Follow the expert tips outlined here, and you’re sure to adorn your windows with curtains that pull your space together.