Don't leave your molding in the dark; use contrasting neutrals to link two rooms.
Trim Treatments
The creamy walls and tan trim make the room feel larger withoutcreating too much of a contrast. Using a trim color that is toodark could make the room feel closed in.

Selecting a trim color used to be so easy. There was white and off-white. Simple, right? Yes, but we want you to think outside the box. Trim doesn't always need to be white. Take a look at Allison and Duncan Manley's home, for example. They creatively linked their living and dining rooms by using complementary neutral paint colors.

The living room is painted tan with white trim. However in the dining room, the color combination was reversed using a slightly darker tan on the trim. This creates a completely new look that coordinates with the living room, while still setting the dining room apart. Because of the lighter shade on the walls, this small space feels larger. Also, the color is a welcome contrast to the richly stained wood furniture.

To draw attention to the corner bookcase, the back of it was painted the same tan as the trim. This makes a stylish yet affordable statement, allowing accessories to stand out.

Neutral colors work with many different interior schemes, but this palette is far from ordinary. For instance, the well-conceived tones highlight architectural details and prized accessories. Think of neutrals as a complement to your existing furnishings. Selecting one can be as easy as choosing a color found in your upholstery fabric or in a favorite painting.

So before you reach for white paint, think again. You can create a whole new look by thinking outside the can of paint.

Beyond Wall Color
Here are some more places to consider adding color.

  • Stairway risers, treads, or handrails
  • Fireplace mantels
  • Doors, door frames, windows, or window casings
  • Ceilings (A lighter color raises the ceiling; a darker color lowers it.)