How to Coordinate Paint Colors in the Living Room & Dining Room


The wall designs and colors in living rooms and dining rooms must coordinate in a fashion that allows for the main functions of the rooms to be carried out. Living rooms must be comfortable since most of the entertainment takes place in the living room, while dining rooms must be appealing for conversation during meal time. To execute your plan, several factors such as sunlight and other room colors must be considered.

Modern home interior.
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Step 1

For living rooms with lots of sunlight, choose light shades of neutral colors to give the impression of a larger space and to allow for easy furniture matching. For living rooms with little sunlight, choose warm colors (red/orange tints) or cool colors (blue/purple tints) to give a feeling of comfort under artificial lights.

Yellow curtain with shadows.
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Step 2

If the living room has neutral colors, choose any warm dining room colors (red/orange/brown) to give the illusion of closeness and togetherness. If the living room has warm colors, choose darker warm tones for the dining room to change the mood without being too drastic. If the living room has cool colors, choose a pale warm color which promotes slight inclusiveness but not as much as brighter warm colors.

Warm tones in dining room.
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Step 3

For living rooms and dining rooms with neutral to light warm colors, choose darker tones on ceilings to make the rooms seem wider, while the "lower ceiling illusion" promotes inclusiveness. For living rooms and dining rooms with warm or cool colors, choose lighter tones on the ceiling to avoid claustrophobia.

Living room with lighter tones on walls.
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Tips & Warnings

  • If painting stripes, remember that horizontal makes rooms appear wider while vertical makes rooms seem taller.


  • "Popular Mechanics Complete Home How-To;" Albert Jackson and David Day; 2004
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