Living room colors: How to match brown with something else?

Discussion in 'Choosing Colors' started by Tea_with_milk, Jun 17, 2008.

  1. Tea_with_milk

    Tea_with_milk New Seed

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    Hello all,

    Here is my problem. We just got a brand new house, and would like to create a more colorful look for the living room. The living room hasn't been finished yet by the constructors, so I can't show the pics. However, we know that the base color is going to be brown due to a number of reasons. First, the ceiling is colored with very light brown (almost beige) color. Next, we are planning on installing wooden floors, which will be either Brazilian cherry or maple both of which are dark brown dark brown. Finally, our "centerpiece" furniture will be a large brown leather sofa.

    Having said that, my initial intention was to add green as the second color (green rug on the floor, green pillows on the sofa, green armchair to counterbalance the sofa itself, and green wall art pieces).

    However--Houston we have a problem--my wife hates green :'( :'( :'( So, I'm torn with the dilemma of what color to choose as the second one. I know that I wouldn't put it red for sure--we need to paint the walls with something light, since we don't have the direct light and would like to brighten the room. Right now my two choices are: orange or blue.

    Any suggestions, please on which color should be complementary with brown for the living room? Maybe, some of you know the links to some inspirational living room designs that have brown-blue or brown-orange color schemes? Any information would be greatly appreciated!

    Dmitry (sorry for the long post).
     



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  2. Droopy

    Droopy Slug Slaughterer Plants Contributor

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    Since I'm very conservative about my colours, I'd go with a cream wall colour. Not pure white, since I think that's a bit hard on the eyes. Choosing neutral walls will leave you free to decorate your floors and furniture with brighter rugs, pillows, throws, table cloths, curtains etc.
     
  3. kuntrygal

    kuntrygal Texas Rose

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    Are you going to paint 3 walls brown with an accent wall? I would go with a lime green (I know) or a teal blue. I'm a colorful person. Brown walls and a brown couch, beige ceiling and wooden doors. To me that would be very depressing! :(
     
  4. SusieQ

    SusieQ Seedling

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    A hot new color combination right now seems to be brown and aqua, it really is pretty together, with accent pieces WT's, pillows rugs, vases, etc.
     
  5. gardenmama

    gardenmama In Flower

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    I would go for some color besides brown on the walls. The the dark floor and dark furniture there wouldn't be much definition and would be so depressing. that would be so dark. I like the idea of a fresh color on the walls,a nice light aqua or fresh new green.

    Check out this site. I used this site to mess around with colors on the computer instead of on the walls.

    http://www.behr.com/behrx/workbook/index.jsp

    Have fun with the decorating.
    :p
     
  6. Bluebirdie

    Bluebirdie Seedling

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    I agree with Droopy on the paint color for the walls. The cream wall color will be a neutral as well as the browns that you're already planning on. Having those two neutrals will leave you endless options for the other colors in the room. I personally like a pale blue with brow; not a baby blue, but a blue with a little gray in it.
    Good luck and please post some pictures when you get done!

    Martha
     
  7. toni

    toni Mistress of Garden Junque Staff Member Moderator Plants Contributor

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    I'm with Droopy, no white walls...way too glaring in both artificial and natural light. I would go with a lighter shade of the ceiling color. Depending on the formula and base paint used, cream can have a yellow tone and may not blend well with the beige.

    You don't have to pick only one coordinating color to go with the browns. Blues of almost all hues and tones go well with browns so pick two or three that you really like for accent. Rust, burnt orange are both reddish-orange that will work. A brownish mustard color would be a nice accent. A contemporary print that has elements of all those colors and a little green too would add some real interest.

    To see what colors you like and how they go together, find a store that carries a wide selection of throw pillows in a lot of colors...like one of the large linens stores and find shades of blue, red, orange that you like and see what they look like together. You could do the same thing at a fabric store that specializes in upholstery and drapery fabrics, lay several bolts of fabric together to see how they look. When you find the colors you really like ask for a swatch or buy an eighth of a yard of each to carry around with you when shopping for rugs, pillows, knickknacks, etc.
     
  8. gardenmama

    gardenmama In Flower

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    We did out upstairs bedroom with the ceiling color the same as the wall color. Makes the ceiling look taller and the room larger.

    No white walls for sure....very depressing and sterile.
     
  9. Tea_with_milk

    Tea_with_milk New Seed

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    Dear All,

    Thanks so much for your replies. Definitely got a lot of nice ideas as well as reinforced some of mine!

    The more I think about, the more of new variables come into play. For instance, our dining room is going to be colored burgundy (a subject to change though) and our living is basically next to it, so I don't think it will go nicely with the brown-blue color schemes.

    We would definitely color walls with a different color (we have only three, pretty much two walls, since the windows occupied a large chunk of the third wall). The ceilings are very high, so increasing their height may not be a critical issue. I spent pretty much the entire last night playing around with the color schemes (downloaded Color Style Studio, so at least now can see whether a scheme would "click" or not). I figure out that I wouldn't go with white for the wall colors. My idea is to create a good balance of two main colors with multiple shades of them. The walls should be of a very light color, so when I tried light blue, it felt very cold, especially with the Brazilian cherry floor, which itself has different shades of brown. Maybe a shade of aqua (which would be Baby blue) can work, I should try. As of now, I more inclined towards the peach colored walls and a brown-orange scheme. That would also convert our dining room into Mahogany. What do you think about that?

    My overall idea is to start with the lightest shades on the walls/floors getting darker/more vibrant colors towards the center of the room where the furniture is. With the dark brown sofa I would definitely throw very bright pillows of the second color as well as put an armchair/loveseat of the same color. And of course, dark brown coffee table on a bright rug with the second color theme.

    I have ordered an interior design software package, so soon I should be able to update on my story with some pics.

    Thanks again! A lot of great ideas!
     
  10. kuntrygal

    kuntrygal Texas Rose

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    If you can google and get your hands on a color wheel that should help. Whatever the color that is opposite brown would be your best bet. Anything in that color scheme should work.
     
  11. Nana

    Nana New Seed

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    i know i might be late to suggest things,
    but i agree with gardenmama.
    if you really like green,i suggest not to make everything green.
    make green look better by blending it to other colors like blues,dark brown ,or black and a darker shade of beige.
    if you wife totally disagrees on green the the warm palate (red,orange,yellow and brown)would be ok...imagen fall season if u wish....
    http://www.hickerphoto.com/autumn-pictures-photos.htm
    those pics would give you an idea of how fall blend will look like
     
  12. kuntrygal

    kuntrygal Texas Rose

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    Sorry you said you wouldn't go with red, because red and brown go together beautifully. I just painted one of the walls in my living room red (Tomato Red to be exact, but it isn't orangy red), and the other walls are a neutral beige. I think it is very sheek.
     
  13. SusieQ

    SusieQ Seedling

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    Aqua,blue/green goes beautiful with brown. or just a pretty blue will do, and it very popular, I've seen pink with brown also and it can be striking as well
     
  14. CritterPainter

    CritterPainter Awed by Nature

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    I'll put in another vote for aqua. Different folks interpret color names very differently, I'm thinking of a very-greenish clear, light blue. Cherry floors have a reddish undertone to them and something tinged with green would really pop. It would be a fabulous accent color with the peach you have in mind, too, just little pops of it in the form of vases and throw pillows, little things evenly spread around the room. Would pick up the sky in your big windows, too, and bring that in.
     
  15. payperbiz

    payperbiz New Seed

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    Try mixing mustard yellow and peach with the brown hues. These colors can brighten up the room but they don't necessarily deviate from the earth tone.