Be part of the Qanvast Trust Programme!Find out more
RM50K Qanvast GuaranteeRM50K GuaranteePersonalised RecommendationsExclusive PerksPerks
Find out more

Take Neutral-Coloured Rooms to the Next Level With These Tips!

March 10, 2022

Ideas for a neutral-coloured room you'll be partial towards!

We're now on Instagram! Follow us for more house inspo, tips, tricks and more…

Neutrals have always been a popular colour choice among homeowners renovating their homes. It's easy to choose white, beige, or grey tones for materials and furnishings because they're so easy to match, ideal for those who like to change up their home's decor frequently. However, there are many misconceptions about neutral as a colour that does not elicit excitement or can enliven a room.

Wira Heights by The Grid Studio
Save to Qanvast Board

View this project by The Grid Studio

Fret not! If you love what neutrals can do for a space and want to use them throughout your home, these design tips will help you create a lively and sophisticated look in your home using neutral tones.

1. Create contrast with light and dark neutrals

A well-designed neutral room requires depth and complexity, so opting for everything in the same colour family will result in a room that falls flat. Consider using contrasting neutral tones to allow individual elements in the room to shine.

Taman Maluri, Kuala Lumpur by RK Interior Studio
Save to Qanvast Board

View this project by RK Interior Studio

This living room demonstrates how combining light and dark neutrals can create a room that is far from boring. The juxtaposition of dark neutrals on the sofa, coffee table, and rug with light neutrals on the tiled floors, walls, and built-ins create an utterly cool and comfortable look without the need for a riot of loud colours.

2. Add a hint of shiny metallics for glamour

Decorating a room with metallic finishes is one of the most effective ways to bring a room's neutral colour scheme to life. When used sparingly, metallic finishes can add a flattering luminosity and make a visual statement in an otherwise plain space.

Happy Garden, Kuala Lumpur by IQI Concept Interior Design & Renovation
Save to Qanvast Board

Artwork, lighting fixtures, and decor items, such as those seen in this dining area, are excellent ways to incorporate metallic in an understated way. Even though these are minor details, they can still have a significant impact on making the room appear more luxurious and modern.

3. Play with textures

One important aspect to consider when decorating a neutral-coloured room is to incorporate as much texture as possible. Textures create interest and layers, which are important when bright/strong colours are out of the picture. You can incorporate different textures such as linens, suedes, velvets, wood, leather, or sheepskins to add instant charm to a neutral space.

The Maple, Sentul KL by PINS Studio
Save to Qanvast Board

View this project by PINS Studio

This Scandinavian style living room is the definition of elevated neutral, with tones and textures taking the space to the next level. The mix of textures from the throw pillows, rugs, armchairs, grand piano, and coffee table creates physical comfort while keeping the room from feeling one-dimensional.

4. Incorporate some design details

When your palette is this pared down, something has to provide visual intrigue. Consider adding design details such as a unique feature wall, ceiling beams, wainscoting, decorating columns or rounded furniture edges to add subtle but eye-catching visual interest to the room.

Anwill Project, Pinnacle, Sri Petaling by Anwill Design Sdn Bhd
Save to Qanvast Board

View this project by Anwill Design Sdn Bhd

This neutral-toned living room exudes personality through simple shapes and design details. The round elements in this room, such as the coffee tables that coordinate with the dining sets and the waterfall island in the kitchen, add a soft touch to the space. The living room wall is also adorned with wooden panels, resulting in a one-of-a-kind feature wall.

5. Break up the monotony with a pop of colour

In a room where neutrals reign, choose a single high-impact hue to liven up the palette. However, to not dominate the space, the colour needs to be carefully placed and in tune with the rest of your colour choices.

The Leafz, Old Klang Road by Wuuu Studio
Save to Qanvast Board

View this project by Wuuu Studio

The bright orange sofa is the focal point of this living room design, demonstrating how breaking the monotony with one colour can have a significant impact on the overall appearance of a neutral-toned room.

6. Enliven the space with some greenery

Another great way to bring a plain neutral-toned room to life (quite literally) is to decorate a room with some plants. Whether you go for a large, tropical-style centrepiece or a more subtle collection of succulents, plants provide eye-catching details that will distract the eyes into focusing on the plain neutral room. Plus, plants can improve your mood and purify the air.

Fera Residence, Wangsa Maju by Pocket Square
Save to Qanvast Board

View this project by Pocket Square

If leafy greens aren't your thing, try a bunch of dried flowers like the ones shown below, or some beach driftwood, to help zhush up a plain neutral-toned space.

Mu, Kuala Lumpur by Doubble Interior Associates
Save to Qanvast Board

View this project by Doubble Interior Associates

7. Experiment with lighting

Lighting is essential in any room, but it can also help to accentuate a neutral scheme. Artificial lighting, for example, has a warm hue that can intensify dark neutrals and add drama to an otherwise bare space. Meanwhile, sunlight can make a small room with light neutral tones appear larger and brighter.

design tips for neutral rooms
Save to Qanvast Board

Even though this reading room is covered in neutral tones, it still looks pleasant, rather than sterile. The wooden floors, white walls, and minimalist furnishing are not overly complicated or fussy, contributing to the space's serene and calming vibe. The room's main design element is the warm lighting that illuminates the space and creates an inviting and welcoming atmosphere at night.

Planning to renovate your home?

We’re here to help! Drop us a request for a free quote and we’ll be happy to match you up with up to four interior designers close to your area, tailored to your budget.

All recommendations made by Qanvast will be protected under the Qanvast Guarantee scheme that covers 50% of your contract value, up to RM50,000, in the case that the recommended Contracting Service Provider becomes insolvent.

Meet interior designers. Get quotes. Based on your requirements, we will recommend you up to 5 firms with the Qanvast Guarantee. Get Free Quotes

Preparing the next article…