The 12 Best Paint Colors for a Kids’ Rooms
They’ll never get tired of these shades.
Painting is a total pain. You have to move all your furniture and tape all the molding and only then can you start putting color on the walls. Good thing these subtle shades will grow with your child — from the terrible twos to the trying teens.
“When the princess dolls and finger paintings are packed away, this particular shade of lavender can look very sophisticated. It’s a true light purple, with no hints of blue or gray,” says designer Leslie May.
This beguiling purple hue encourages creativity and evokes a positive, happy vibe.
Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Spring Lilac 1388
“Baby blue lasts about two years, if that. So I prefer a marine blue that doesn’t go too dark. With white trim, it’s bright and energetic — exactly the opposite of what you’d think a navy room would be. When he’s older, exchange the twin bed for a mahogany fourposter and bring in forest-green Black Watch plaid to take it from nautical to preppy, ” says designer Lori Feldman.
The dark hue makes the white walls appear brighter in this kid’s Manhattan room designed by Amanda Nisbet.
Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Downpour Blue 2063-20
“[This yellow] pulsates with energy. Mixed with white, pastels, and polka dots, it radiates youth. Transformed into the future guest room, it will gracefully host my client’s beautiful English furniture,” says designer Marshall Watson.
A sunny yellow subtly energizes this homework nook.
Make it yours: Farrow Ball Citron 74
“My daughter thinks she has a pink room, but the walls are actually white, with a pink cast. Done in an eggshell finish, they reflect her pink shag rug and the pink fabrics. But down the line, she could simply switch out the rug and accessories to achieve a completely different look. It gives her more flexibility to grow into her room,” says designer Tracey Pruzan.
The warm cream shifts the focus to beautiful accent pieces.
Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Atrium White 79
“It’s funny how kids attach themselves to color. A four-year-old boy wanted blue, and I chose a saturated blue with a bit of sky and smoke in it, so it had some sophistication. Then we chose furniture to grow into — a Moroccan rug, African textiles in browns and tans and whites, a Lucite desk chair. Five years later, it still works,” says designer Timothy Whealon.
This more toned-down blue gives the room a relaxing vibe.
Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Northern Air 1676
“You want to start with something they won’t outgrow in three years, like this strong, clear, confident blue. When they’re little, choose youthful fabrics, and when they get older, there’s nothing prettier than checks. This is a stimulating color for a toddler and not too insipid for a teenager — and not gender-specific. I painted my nephew’s room in it, and my niece wants to swap rooms with him,” says designer Libby Cameron.
A slightly softer blue is always in style.
Make it yours: Benjamin Moore Sailor’s Sea Blue 2063-40
“Blue is not only for boys. I use it all the time because it’s so versatile. It works with almost any color — coral, pink, green, chartreuse, yellow. My teenage daughter’s bedroom is this pale blue that reminds me of the slightly dusty, more aged blues used back in the 1940s. I did it with this wonderful bright red Sister Parish fabric, and it should take her right through college,” says Derse Athalie.
Though this California room has tons of color, the blue walls hold their own — and it’s a solid palette to update with time and trends, thanks to homeowner Monica Bhargava of Williams-Sonoma.
Make it yours: Farrow Ball Borrowed Light 235
“Anything that reminds me of walking along a beach is a great starting point. A classic sand color like this, neutral enough to work over several years, acts as a foundation; the details can change as the child starts exploring his or her own personal style. It looks sunny with natural light streaming in, and then in the evening it’s comfortable and warm. Plus, it’s nontoxic, and as a parent myself, that’s very important,” says designer Stephen Saint-Onge.