Predicted Paint Colors for 2017

2017-predicted-paint-colorsI like to predict interior trends for the year ahead, especially paint colors. If there’s one design element I feel confident in- it’s color theory. I really enjoy working with colors, mixing, and finding palettes that play well together. Click through to see which colors I’m leaning toward in 2017… see what’s in, what’s out, and even take away a few of my painting tips. 

The timing on this post couldn’t be better, as I’m finally at the stage of selecting paint colors for our new house (many of which I’m sharing are already on order).  This year, with our renovation, my goal is to push things a little further, and really strive for creativity. The one thing I dislike most about design on social media is the over saturation or overuse of certain trends. It’s a bummer when a pattern, piece of furniture, or color are plastered everywhere and they lose their uniqueness. Take the eames chairs for example. They’re everywhere. There are SO many replicas and everyone seems to own at least one (myself included), they’re just not as special anymore. I feel the same way about color.

A color (we’re looking at you, gray!) will get too trendy, too fast, and suddenly everything looks the same. If I’m attracted to a popular color, my goal is to use it in a new way, or experiment with a different tone or hue that feels less ordinary. Let’s use green as the example. I’ve always loved green tones… two or three years ago, I shared my dining room and mentioned that I use green as a neutral because I’m so attracted to it. Now, deep greens are replacing navy and are gaining rapid popularity. Suddenly, I don’t feel as attracted to it because it’s everywhere. Rather than sticking with the same hunter green, try pushing it towards a muddy pastel, desaturating it, or mixing a little black to deepen the tone. These will be better options when it comes to longevity.

If you’re also tired of the same old navy, white, and gray… hop on board and add some color with me! I’m breaking it down below…

2017-paint-color-forecastingWhites for Trim // I prefer a neutral, bright white paint when it comes to trim… not too cool, not too warm. This will allow for better versatility when it comes to paint colors and textiles. In semi-gloss, please.

Creamy Whites // I wholeheartedly believe this is the year to warm things up. Gone are the days of cold, stark white. Don’t get me wrong… I love a good minimal, modern, and clean space, but I think the trend will be to gravitate towards warmer whites that feel more welcoming and less clinical.

Soft Tones of Beige // Just like creamy whites above, warmer beige and greige tones are going to replace gray. Steer clear of cool grays and select their warmer counterparts instead. Gray is so overused, this is a solid and sophisticated alternative that literally goes with everything.

Dusty Blues // I am really feeling muddy pastel blue tones lately. I’m planning to use a few pops of this color throughout the house. Maybe I’ll paint a set of french doors or a piece of furniture, either way- I’m definitely into it.

Sage Greens // You already know how I feel about sage. This color was the star of the January moodboard. If you follow along on Instagram stories and Snapchat, you probably watched this color in action. I painted a vintage chest of drawers with this exact shade.

Hunter Greens // Yes, they’re super popular. The trick is to find a shade that isn’t the same medium to dark green tone that everyone and their mother is using. I’m feeling the extra dark hues with a little black added, or shades that have hints of deep blue or brown undertones.

Deep Hues of Blue // Navy has always been popular, but within the past few years, it’s become a real staple in the world of design. There will always be a place for it, but it’s another one of those colors that is overdone. Try finding shades that are super dark (almost black), or colors that have a green undertone. This will add depth and create a moody look- rather than appearing nautical.

Balanced Blacks // I love black paint! It’s bold and you have to really make up your mind if you’re going to do it… but hey, it’s just paint. People are finally catching on to this easy neutral. To use it in a different way, try painting something unexpected- like your trim, a ceiling, or even a pattern on the floor.

Rusty Neutrals // This is the wild card of 2017, and I’m feeling it! Blush pink tones are on their way out, and this rusty, desert underdog is on the way in. What do you guys think?

predicted-paint-colors-for-2017As promised, I also wanted to share a few of my tried and true painting tips:

  • Stop using painters tape. I HATE painters tape… it never works and leaves a squiggly, uneven line. I’m always much happier when I free-hand with a nice brush. If you’re not sure how to do this… watch this video.
  • Stop painting first. People always ask how I compile a color palette for each room. It seems that everyone has trouble selecting paint colors because it feels sort of permanent and daunting. It’s actually pretty easy! Painting is always the last thing I do to a space (besides styling). I pull swatches from the textiles, furniture, or art. It’s always a great jumping off point when it comes to inspiration. Just because you’re moving in or a room is empty, doesn’t mean that painting has to happen immediately. Live in the space for awhile, see how the light interacts, find a couple objects that work well in the space and go from there.
  • Buy quality paint and supplies. This seems obvious, but until I started using nice paint, it used to take forever. I value my time and the way a project turns out. You can get by with only 1-2 coats if you buy the appropriate paint. There’s literally a paint for everything. Technology has come a long way… from self-leveling paints to organic and green paints, they’re safer and easier to use. Ask a professional which one is best for your project.
  • Know your finishes. It’s a given that different finishes should used in different areas of your home. Do a little research to see which finish is appropriate. Typically (most of the time) trim should be semi-gloss and walls should be flat, eggshell, or matte. The same goes for doors… semi or high-gloss is best and easiest to clean.

Alright, that’s pretty much a wrap on all things paint, 2017. Don’t freak out if you just repainted your house gray or that same shade of hunter green or navy (you know the ones)! They’re going to be around for awhile, but I’d rather take the path less traveled. What paint color trends are you guys into this year? It’s sort of exciting to paint a new house with a fresh coat… it feels like a very good, clean, and positive start to the year!

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  1. Leah Prevost says:

    My bedroom is painted Alabaster and my front door is Tricorn Black. I’m loving Stonecutter and Mount Etna!!! I’m usually drawn to the more masculine paint colors but I’ve been so drawn to the dusty pink and muted oranges!!! I need to paint something or somewhere in my house Trek tak! And I hate painters tape too. I agree investing in nice brushes and using good paint!!!

    1. We’re totally on the same page, Leah! Great minds ;) xo

    2. Gail clarke says:

      Love your color choice,similar to mine

  2. I just love your picks Sarah ! I am personally tired of grays ( although it is def. a timeless color) and will be painting it over with some soft whites/ possibly creams in my own place . I’m in love with dusty/ muddy colors ( my bedroom is greyed-out , muddy green ) but love those deep colors you have picked . Also feeling those rusty neutrals surprisingly . Can’t wait to see your place with fresh paint

    1. Thanks, Margo!! I feel the same way about gray… I do like it and it is a timeless color, I just hate that it’s everywhere. I’m sure a little will end up in our new house regardless. ;) xo

  3. You were way ahead of the trend with that green dining room… setting the trend even, perhaps? Probably! Color is so difficult for me. I know what my favorite hues are, but I’m so afraid to use them. When I have, I’ve been happy with it. I’m so itching to do something bold, though. How I wish I could get your ideas/expertise. I’m so looking forward to what your house colors will be. I know it will be unique… and probably, once again, trend-setting. Thank you for the tips. Even if I can’t figure out what I want, I can at least use your neutral color palette as a place to start. I’m shocked about the painter’s tape tip… I’ve always had good luck with it!

    1. That’s such a huge compliment!! Thank you, Georgia! You totally made my night. I’m going to encourage you to do what you love and be bold with your favorite hues. Remember, it’s just paint. Trust your instincts :) On a side note- maybe all this time I’ve been using painters tape wrong? Ha! I’ve never had much luck, but lots of my friends swear by it. xoxo

  4. What a wonderful post, Sarah, and well done. I’m too am looking forward to seeing how you’ve incorporated such colors in your home.

    Meanwhile, I’ve been living with tones of brown and gray in my “French Industrial Lodge” style for going on three years now. I’d like to introduce creams and whites throughout to freshen things up.

    I hope you and Emmett are enjoying the journey of transforming your new house into a home for two very creative people. Cheers, Ardith

    1. Thank you so much, Ardith! I really appreciate your comments. I love the sound of “French Industrial Lodge”. Thanks for the feedback on the survey, too! xo

      1. You are most welcome, Sarah. Thanks to your style inspiration, I want to modernize and brighten our french country master bedroom. It will be a fun challenge, given I have to work around my husband’s mother’s antique bureaus (and the weird texture feature wall, courtesy of the prior owners). If you wish, you can see photos of our “FIL” on my pinboard at

        Have a wonderful weekend, Ardith

  5. David Pulido says:

    Dunn and Edwards ,”Sandcastle” on walls, of course semi gloss in kitchen and bathrooms with pure white semi gloss on trims and flat on ceilings! I dig these colors and if tenant likes colors are light to change! But so far all have liked these colors and are a favorite!

    1. Thanks, David! I’ll definitely have to check those out. Appreciate it!

  6. Hi Sarah,

    This was a great post! Any suggestions for trim color for the rusty neutrals choices? I am stumped—thinking dark tones?



    1. So glad you liked it Kathryn! The rusty neutrals would work well with dark trim (black would be gorgeous), as well as lighter trim. You really can’t go wrong with pure white. xo

  7. I am so thrilled with the way my bedroom turned out! The bold White popped out against the grays and sage. Wow! You have made painting so fun! Thanks again, Terilinn

  8. Commenting late to your post, sorry. I like your tips on painting. I’ve never used painters tape and probably never will. I learned at a young age from my father who was a painter how to paint, push your brush out on the wall, run a good paint bead and move your arm not your wrist. Those edger’s are nice but get paint on the edge and you’ve got a mess. Good quality brushes are key and if you take care of them they will last forever! Don’t overload your brush and don’t run it against the side because you take the paint off, rather tap it against each side of the paint container and if you haven’t overloaded it will be perfect every time.
    I also like that you don’t paint first, pick a pillow or some kind of fabric that you love and pick a color from that. It’s more individual and not so trendy…who knows you may start your own trend. Color is personal, at least it is for me. It sets moods and feelings so go with what you love and not what every one else is using.

    1. Thanks so much for the thoughtful comment, Kelly! Clearly your father knew what he was doing- very excellent tips… even a couple I didn’t know about that I will implement the next time around. Thanks for taking the time to share and for the sweet compliment! You’re right… color is super personal. XO

  9. Dawn Donovan says:

    Love the sage Sarah. I have been trying to find a grey but am so aggravated trying to find a black grey not blue, not green not purple one. I had no idea I was so touchy about tone until now. I know lighting affects it. Maybe I will go with the sage as it is a favorite color of mine. Thanks for the idea for my kitchen cabinets. Right now I have samples all over my awful and very old cabinets. I want a pretty kitchen until I can afford to do new cabinets etc. Glad I found you.

    1. Thanks so much, Dawn!! So happy to hear that :) xo

  10. Dona Gilton says:

    Please help!I have never designed any room in my life, but i have been studing. I painted my walls SW Repose Grey, my trim and doors are SW Extra White, now I’m going for my kitchen cabinets I have no idea what color. I know I want them light to make everything bigger and brighter. I am going for the white, cream, grays, pastel, farmhouse stle. My kitchen has Cherry colored floors and what sheen should I paint them. I will be using Sherwin-Williams my favorite. Oh heres a glitch, i still have the 70s orange counter top which i will change out when i can afford it. So it would be nice if the cabinets looked ok with the orange counter top. I have been looking at the whites to the grays. But there’s too many choices, might you possibly give me name’s of colors to try? Thank you.

    1. Maria Starkey says:

      Dona – you may have already done your cabinets but Passive from Sherwin-Williams is a great color against the Extra White! Used it in a bathroom for the walls and our cabinets are ‘close’ to the Extra White but I plan to paint them to match the trim. It’s a really clean and soothing feel. Let me know if you would like some photos. Not sure I could post them here but maybe we could exchange emails somehow or if you use Facebook I could send you some there. I’ve used Argos in our bedroom and then the Passive in the bath. In the main parts of our house I did Sea Salt (we are in a coastal area near Charleston, SC, so the coastal farmhouse looks is big here). I’ve also used Olympus White, as a wall color and it’s a soothing grayish-blue. But depending on the lighting it can be a little ‘too blue’. In other rooms it’s a gray, but it’s a little fickle.

      I painted Rock Candy all over my son and daughte-in-laws home as ‘their neutral wall color’ and it’s gorgeous. Clean and fresh and looks awesome up against Extra White. My grandsons room was Mountain Air in their last house. It’s similar to Olympus White and the paints were mixed up and Mtn. Air got painted in their master and then we realized that the nursery was going to end up Rock Candy. Oops! But … they love it now!! lol . Holler if you need any ideas. I’m full of them. And we have mahogany floors throughout, even bathrooms. I love the 5″ wood floors but wish I had done a wee bit lighter stain because they show EVERY fleck of dust.

  11. Donna Donovan says:

    I too love black but rather than paint a wall in my bedroom I found a reasonably priced pre glued, peel off wall paper of good quality. That way when I am tired of it…off it goes.

    I love green blues. My home is painted in hues of it. My #1 favorite is a Valspar called Sparkling Lake It is green…it is blue it is a strange color you cannot quite put your finger on to name it. Just like the lakes and ocean it depends on lighting.

    Does anyone know of a pure silver gray color I can do cabinets with? I need a white base I guess and it seems no matter what they look like on paper, they come up green or blue gray in the house.

    I enjoy this site so thank you. PS Magnolia paints are still not easy to locate at least not yet

    1. Maria Starkey says:

      Donna, look at Passive from Sherwin Williams.

  12. Maria Starkey says:

    Where did the color called “Linen – Restoration” come from? I’d love to get a sample but I have no idea where to get it.

    1. That’s a Restoration Hardware paint, Maria! You can grab the swatch in one of their stores. xo