Trim: Go Bold in Your Home

When we imagine rooms in our mind's eye, wall color is quite often one of the first things we think of. To that end, as we plan updates to our homes, a change in wall color is at the top of the to-do list. Trim, meanwhile, is not infrequently painted a white semi-gloss. Doors, too, are typically painted the same color as the trim. And that white semi-gloss is tried-and-true for a reason: It's neutral, easy to clean, and makes just about any color look pretty darn good. 

Glossy white trim gives this dining room a clean and bright look. Image: HGTV

Glossy white trim gives this dining room a clean and bright look. Image: HGTV

 

But trim can also make quite an impact when it is done in unexpected colors. In fact, just a simple change in hue can shift the entire look of a space. The father of color relativity, Josef Albers, noted, "We are able to hear a single tone. But we almost never…see a single color unconnected and unrelated to other colors." This is what makes trim such a surprising—and likely untapped—element in a room. A thoughtful change in its color will noticeably affect the colors surrounding it—walls included.

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This color plate from Albers' seminal Interaction of Color demonstrates how the surrounding color transforms our perception of the color in the center. Those small squares are actually the very same color. AND...

 

...That square could be a door...

Image: Design Sponge

Image: Design Sponge

A super-lemon yellow door lends zest to the pale hardwood and gives the otherwise unmemorable white walls a refreshing, icy sheen.

 

...Or Entryway

Image: houseandhome.com

Image: houseandhome.com

Warm, dusty teal quietly encloses the height of this space, making this entryway that much more inviting. By using teal on the doorframe, it becomes adjacent to the orange wall just behind—an unexpected and humorous touch. Deep wood-stained accents give the unusual trim work a traditional underscore. As a whole, these color choices make for an area of the home that becomes even more rewarding through experience.

 

...Or Kitchen

Image: lightlocations.com

Image: lightlocations.com

Grey has been quite the favorite as of late. And for good reason; it's flexible in both range and personal style. While remaining true to its classy neutrality, it becomes graphic when used on trim and built-ins which allows the whiteness of the walls to feel soft and considered.

 

...Or Bathroom

Image: House Beautiful

Image: House Beautiful

Sea glass-inspired blues and greens make for lovely bathroom colors. This particular iteration has a wholeness that lends it a farmhouse practicality. Yet its use on the trim and wainscoting, in addition to that clawfoot tub and marble floor, bring to mind more decadent spaces...

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When in Versailles make your trim bold (and gold).

 

If you're looking for a simple way to refresh a room, a change in trim color may very well be your answer. Our daily rates are perfect for accomplishing these lighter tasks, so whether you'd like to give scuffed wooden door frames an update in minimal and modern white or you want to add earthiness to an entryway, there's truly a spectrum of accessible, exciting options. (And, yes, we can do gold, too.)