Wood trim is a classic feature of many older homes. While some homeowners love the warmth and character it adds, others find it outdated and dark. If you’re struggling to love your wood trim, it could be that the wall color is creating a visual distraction for you. Choosing the right neutral paint color to go with your wood trim can not only save you the cost and labor of painting all that woodwork but add a special kind of beauty and warmth to your home that’s hard to replicate.
Contrast or Calm?
A great wall paint color will either contrast with your wood tones to help them stand out or calm them down so that they soften and blend. For example, a pretty beige might harmonize with orange-toned wood (similar hue families on the color wheel), whereas a soft gray-blue would offer more contrast and drama (opposite hue families). Both are beautiful, but they’re two completely different vibes. Generally speaking, when you’re staging or preparing a home for sale, keep large-scale color choices toned-down and harmonious. This is because it helps visually enlarge the space, and it gives potential buyers a more neutral canvas to envision the home as their own. It’s also what makes neutral paint a great choice for pairing with wood trim. *If you’re not planning to sell your home, you may want to explore more dramatic paint color options than you’ll find in this article.
This beautiful living room is a great example of a wall paint color that beautifully accents and contrasts with the wood trim. (Orange and blue are opposites on the color wheel, so it’s achieving the desired effect). Perfect for a homeowner who loves bright colors! If you’re planning to sell your home, however, this much contrast and drama are typically too overwhelming for buyers. Homeowners prepping for a home sale should opt for a more neutral, blended palette in order to appeal to the greatest number of potential buyers.
So stop fighting your wood trim…let me show you how to work with it by updating your wall paint color!
A Few Key Points Before We Start
And now…let’s take a look at which neutral paint colors can make that wood trim work for you!
Red Wood Tones
The warmth of cherry, mahogany, and other red-stained woods can add a lot of beauty and depth to a space. This red is more apparent in certain light, at times making the wood can appear a tiny bit pink or even a muted purple.
Neutral Wall Paint Colors to Update Red Wood Tones
Orange Wood Tones
Woods with orange tones may fall a bit more to either the yellow or red side of the color wheel, but their predominant hue is still in the Orange family.
Neutral Wall Paint Colors to Update Orange Wood Tones
Yellow Wood Tones
Yellow-toned woods are pretty obviously yellow. Sometimes they can lean a bit into orange, and in the right light, they may pick up flashes of green or pink. You’ll see this color wood a lot in homes that were built in the 1990s when “honey oak” was all the rage.
Neutral Wall Paint Colors to Update Yellow Wood Tones
A paint color’s hue family is NOT always obvious (especially when it comes to neutrals), but they all fall on the color wheel somewhere. Confused about hue family? We take ALL the guesswork out of it and teach you exactly what it is and how to find it in our Color By The Numbers™ online course. Learn more here!
Need a Little Color Help?
Whether you’re looking for a complete refresh of your space, experimenting with a new style, or just need a little professional guidance to help narrow down your paint color choices, we are here to help!