Put Down the Paintbrush: 10 Ways to Add Color Without Painting

Renters Solutions

Are you a color-lover adrift on an ocean of white? Living in a rental where you're not allowed to paint doesn't mean you can't surround yourself with brilliant hues. Here are ten easy ways to add color without ever picking up a paintbrush.

1. Go for big, colorful art.
An oversized piece (like the one in the bedroom above, from Okologi, or the living room pictured up top, from Sköna Hem, via Design Milk) instantly brightens a room.

2. Hang a colorful tapestry on the wall.
Like this one from Beatrice & Ramsey's Cultured Echo Park Casa.

3. Use colorful pillows and throws.
As seen in Christina's Comfortable, Collected Austin Abode.

4. Eschew neutrals and go for curtains in a crazy color.
Or two crazy colors, like these from vintage Domino via the Paris Apartment.

Or shades in a crazy color, like these malachite ones in a Belgian home spotted on Elle Decor.

5. Invest in a colorful couch.
The red couch in Katie's Hillside Bungalow makes the room.

6. Or a colorful rug.
Like the Turkish kilim in Natalie and Kevin's Perfect Parkdale Perch.

7. Upholster a set of dining chairs in a vibrant rainbow of colors.
Image from Nuevo Estilo, via Apartment Therapy.

Or just paint them, as in this interior by Ilse Crawford (via Lauren's Style Library).

8. Fill your home with plants.
Like Adam and Ashley did. Green is a color.

9. Cover the back of your bookcases with colorful paper.
Sure, this isn't a traditional bookcase (it's a stack of IKEA boxes), but you get the idea. Photo from Marie Mersier.

10. Combine any of the above strategies for maximum color.
Bonus points go to Alex and Alina for pairing a colorful rug and colorful art in different shades of blue.

Bonus points also go to the creators of this interior (photoraphed by Logan Photography for Period Living), who have combined colorful textiles and pillows and accessories and furniture into a room that, despite being white, is bursting with color.

(Image credits: Sköna Hem; Okologi; Pablo Enriquez; Adrienne Breaux; Domino; Elle Decor; Katie's Hillside Bungalow; Nuevo Estilo; Ilse Crawford; Jaclyn Campanaro; Marie Mersier; Nicole Crowder; Period Living)