In partnership withBEHR

5 Color Trends That Make a Big Impact in Small Spaces

published May 21, 2020
Post Image
Credit: Danie Drankwalter

For the first time ever, we launched our Small/Cool Experience At Home, challenging 20 designers to create 20 virtual Small/Cool spaces featuring the biggest trends they see emerging in 2020. These rooms covered a whole spectrum of ideas but were solidly unified in theme: Have courage and choose what you love. So now, we present five trends from the experience that show how this mantra manifests in all sorts of styles. From the throwback tones of the 1980s to the fiery shades of the American West, these are the colors from Behr® Paint — the official paint sponsor of Small/Cool — that make the spaces work. Here is the 2020 Small/Cool Color Trend Report:

1. Go bold, bright, and high-contrast

A set designer before he transitioned into interiors, Orlando Soria knows how to stage a space. To enliven a small room, he went big. The centerpiece of Orlando’s “Fields of Color” design (pictured at top) is an abstract mural, splashed out in bright pop colors. Terrazzo-printed chairs and a raspberry sofa complement the wall colors, while neutrals, pops of gold, and matte black ground the room. His painterly palette includes:

Credit: Danie Drankwalter

2. Look back to go forward

Known for balancing clean-lined design with layers of texture and color, Gunnar Larsen makes throwback prints and plaids feel modern in his “’80s Explosion” room. Bright color combinations and bold shapes (hello, Memphis!) are creeping back into design via abstract patterns, stripes, and sculptural furniture. This time, though, they’re a little more restrained, and feel fresh in a green-and-white palette with pops of yellow:

Credit: Danie Drankwalter

3. The coziness trend continues — but it’s gotten bolder

You can always trust stylist, designer, writer, and TV personality Emily Henderson to deliver a well-considered space. With wall panels painted a rich, deep red, her “English Eclectic” trend adds an edge to cozy cottage style. Instead of dainty florals and sweet pastels, her design is all about moody hues, layered textures, and plenty of quirky touches. The key to keeping the room refined but not dull is that modern base color:

Credit: Danie Drankwalter

4. The U.S. West is very in

Recognized for her approach to modern California living, Michelle Lisac created a “Sunset-Inspired Palettes” room to kick back and relax in. The backdrop is a mural inspired by the Western sky and made from shades of millennial pink, burnt orange, and cranberry red. Modern furniture and natural materials bring it down to earth. For an instant vacation, try:

Credit: Danie Drankwalter

5. Use color practically

Writer and editor Danielle Blundell teamed up with organizers Jamie and Fillip Hord of Horderly to design a storage-savvy “cloffice”: a creative two-in-one approach that uses smart space solutions and flexible furnishings to transform a simple closet into the most inventive room in the house. Crisp white walls keep the space visually decluttered while shelves painted in an aqua gradient draw the eye up. To try it at home, use:

Inspired to make a statement in your small space? These designers prove that you should go for it!