Our Guide to Choosing Accent Colours

6th April 2020

Paint The Town Green

Accent colours in the home are extremely popular, and they are a great way to showcase your personality and bring a little bit more character to a room. But how do you pick the right colours and which walls make the best choice?

Here are our best top 10 practice tips for using accent colour throughout the home:

1. Make sure the colour you pick makes you feel good, regardless of trends.

A good starting point when trying to decide what colour to choose would be to learn a bit about colour psychology. Figure out how certain colours make you feel and decide what atmosphere you want to create. Are you looking for a colour that will give you energy in the morning so maybe going for a sunny yellow in your bathroom? Or do you want a relaxing, cosy atmosphere for the bedroom and will opt for a warm coffee tone?

2. Decide which wall you’d like to showcase.

If your room has great architectural features, an accent colour is a great way of showcasing them. Equally, the wall where your windows are can work too. A good way of deciding which wall to go for is simply walking into the room and noticing where your eyes are drawn – that will be the room’s focal point. In a bedroom, for instance, a great focal point is the wall where the bed is placed – a warm colour there would create a cocooning, comforting feeling.

3. Chose a wall and let it breathe.

Once you’ve decided on both the colour and the wall, make sure you ‘let it breathe’. An accent wall is supposed to be a feature for your room, a focal point, so avoid blocking it by placing any tall furniture such as cupboards in front of it, as it will lose its impact.

4. Bring it all together with other elements.

Create visual consistency throughout the space and try to bring the colour you’ve used for your accent wall to other elements of the room. Can you use the same colour in any of the soft furnishings or interior decorating accessories? Make sure to be subtle, and not overwhelm. A couple of nods to the accent wall are enough.

5. Don’t think it can only be a block colour.

When we think feature walls most of us think one colour. However, there’s nothing stopping you from being creative and playing with colour to create something different. What about stripes? Or a geometric pattern? Don’t be scared to try something different and express your personality in a unique way.

6. Play with the finish.

Now that you’ve decided to get a bit more creative with your accent wall, remember you can also play with the finish. Metallics are great to brighten up a room and give a dose of glamour.

7. You can pull off an accent wall in a neutral colour scheme.

The beauty of an accent wall is that it can work in any room, if it complements your colour scheme. If you’re more into neutrals, a soft earth tone like Paint the Town Green’s A Girl Called Johnny would work great as an accent in a room painted in Pictures of You or Just Like Heaven.

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8. Think about your other walls.

The best way to keep the room pleasant to the eye is to make sure you use similar tones, so you either go for warm or cold colours. While the feature wall will naturally draw attention, try to make sure the contrast is not too strong, and undertones of your accent colour are found in the other walls’ colour. For instance:

Neutral scheme:

A Girl Called Johnny accent wall, and Just Like Heaven or Pictures of You for the other walls.

Statement scheme:

Fisherman’s Blues accent wall, and Private Universe for the other walls; or Purple Rain accent wall and In the Clouds for the other walls.

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Bold scheme:

If you dare to go bold, Ruby for an accent wall in a hallway creates a fresh look paired with a strong white like White Ladder on the other walls. However, you will have to bridge the difference in tones here with other elements that pull the scheme together: a red chair or artwork would look great here! Another option would be to consider the door at the end of a long narrow hallway as the feature ‘wall’ element that can be painted red.

9. Look up! Consider the ceiling.

The ceiling is your fifth wall, and there’s no reason why you shouldn’t consider it for an accent colour. A low ceiling would benefit for a cooler shade to create the illusion of more space, while a tall ceiling painted in a warm tone will be pulled in and create a sense of cosiness. Paint the Town Green’s Powder Blue looks lovely on a bathroom ceiling and think of Night Swimming for an elegant living room with a tall ceiling, and walls painted in Private Universe.

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10. It doesn’t have to be paint.

An accent wall doesn’t have to mean paint. Think of it as an opportunity to create a feature, or focal point in your room, or as a white canvas that you can embellish however you want. Instead of paint you can also use a patterned wallpaper, or why not a collage of more than one wallpaper, if you’re feeling artistic? Tiles are great option for a feature wall, as well as beautifully styled shelves. What about a gallery wall covered in your favourite art or photographs?


Hopefully this provides plenty of ideas to get you going, but if you need some more help, come and talk to us in our showroom. We’d love to help and show you some of our work!

Here are some accent wall and colour schemes from our work at Paint the Town Green, to inspire you further.


Paint the Town Green offer an in-house colour consultancy. Our eco-friendly paints have the lowest possible levels of VOCs making them a better choice for you and the environment. All water based, they are odourless, quick drying and come in three finishes: matt, wipeable or eggshell.

For more information about our paints or for a decorating quote, please visit our showroom at 39a&b Allfarthing Lane or call us on 020 8871 0531.

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