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How to Choose ColourYellow

Three Different Shades of Yellow

By 11/09/2009January 28th, 201725 Comments

I love the feeling of this interior from Elle Decor and the banana leaves which add fabulous drama to the room. Plus there are 3 different shades of yellow here!

A yellowy beige in the sisal area rugs, a fresh, clean yellow in the upholstered chairs and a fabulous sunset, golden shade for the drapery!  A beautiful example of a monochromatic colour scheme!

The only thing that’s missing is colour on the walls.  So if you go through the process of what to choose. . .

1) They can’t be a clean yellow to match the furniture because it would not work with the rugs and the drapes.

2) Can’t be the colour of the drapes because then it would fight with the clean yellow of the chairs.

3) The yellow beige of the carpets would not be fabulous with either the chairs or the drapes.

So I would paint the walls BM Rich Cream, not muddy, not too clean–the perfect backdrop for this happy and bright interior.

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Related posts:

Why is it so hard to choose yellow?

Monumental, Residential and Human Scale

Clean vs. Dirty Colours

The Secrets to Decorating with Yellow

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  • Marina says:

    Yes it is very fresh Maria!
    It adds some sunshine into your world … and I am definitely needing that today … its so cold outside!

  • Eliana Tomás says:

    i especially like the yellow of the curtains. i like details/touches in yellow in a house, especially if the room lacks natural light, like halls or badrooms (common in london flats).

  • Easy Does It Redesign and Consulting says:

    Yes – nice yellow choices. I am a fairly new fan of yellows. For whatever reason I used to shy away from them. You're right about the walls lacking color – I'm curious – What color would you recommend?

  • Chris says:

    Just out of curosity (and because I value your color expertise) what color or colors would you have painted the walls? Would you have stayed with the yellows? I ask because my living room is monochromatic in the browns…and I have tan walls with a chocolate accent wall…but I feeling a change coming…

  • K. says:

    I love the atmosphere of this room! I dont think anyone could ever feel grumpy or sad in there! Funny what a little bit of colour does to people! 😛

  • Ruthie's Renewed Treasures says:

    Very Cheey! I love the way the green banana leaves(?) are in the center of the room creating the balance and whimsy to the room! I think I would maybe paint the rooms the color of the sisal rugs? Maria, you tell us!

  • Rebecca Sherman says:

    I love monochromatic rooms, they're so sophisticated. What color would you have painted the walls in this photo — would love to know!

  • Between you, me and the Fencepost says:

    It is a great picture. The open door, the 'poofy' curtains. At first glance they look like they are billowing in the wind from the open door. Makes me want summer back or a holiday somewhere warm.

  • Haven and Home says:

    Love all three yellows, they all make me happy!

  • Jaime @ DOXA says:

    Monochromatic is my favorite approach to color! Tres chic;)

  • Karena says:

    Beautiful and it works so well! I love yellow, in all of it's glorious shades.

  • marty (A Stroll Thru Life) says:

    Such a sunny and cheerful room. I think every room needs a little yellow. Thanks for sharing. Hugs, Marty

  • Maria Killam says:

    For inquiring minds that want to know, I posted what colour I would paint the room 🙂 And thanks for the correction of the leaves being from a Banana tree Ruthie 🙂


  • Greet says:

    This is really hard to choose a colour for the walls!
    I would say a more beige colour! I think the BM Rich Cream is a sort of beige???


  • Tracy @ Comfort and Luxury says:

    Love this yellow room… and I'm comletely okay with white walls though I think I'd use a warmer shade. Lately, in my own home that has its share of yellow curtains and things, I've been loving Behr's Cottage White… but who's to say that it would work in this room… I'm just adding my two cents! ; )

  • Carol Ann says:

    I do not think you could be unhappy in this room, what do you think? I do not look good in yellow but I could live there very happy.

  • Sedona @ MyDivineDelights says:

    What a yummy happy room! It looks so summery! Doesn't the pop of green from the leaves just make it feel clean and fresh! Thanks for sharing that pic! I love when you walk through your color choice "thinking out loud" for us. Thanks!

  • Kate Smith says:

    Great suggestion. You always step right up with a great solution to every wall color question.

  • Rachel says:

    beautiful room, but it feels so unbalanced to me. My eyes are constantly drawn to the large green plant for relief from all that yellow!

  • VictoriaArt says:

    Love your choice, Maria!
    I could also see a watery blue green on the walls….
    Any thoughts?


  • Maria Killam says:

    Rachel, well you can tell what my favourite colour is! And that's why more yellow on the walls would be too much, rich cream is exactly what it sounds like, I just think cream and yellow goes together certainly in this sophisticated space!

    The reason why I wouldn't introduce a blue-green on the walls here is because it wouldn't relate to anything else in the room. You'd need to start adding that colour to the space to make it work!


  • Cristin says:

    great example!


  • Lauren says:

    love all the yellows combined! you make it sound so easy & straight-forward!!!

    love the curtains in particular- so rich.


  • maison21 says:

    what a delightfully cheerful and clean room. i wish more folks would embrace yellow, rather then being scared by it.

  • Lindsay says:

    I completely agree with you Maria, the walls should be painted in BM Rich Cream!

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