What Color of Curtains Go With White Walls?
Discover the best curtain colors for white walls, plus tips to help you select the right color for your home.
Whatever the passing fads and fashions, white remains the most popular color for the walls of our homes. It’s fresh, clean, practical, and versatile.
It’s also classic and timeless enough to suit any aesthetic or color palette. Faced with a house of literally blank walls, what are the best curtain colors?
The best curtain colors for white walls are neutrals like white, off-white, and brown to create a peaceful space. Complement white walls with cool blue, green, or gray curtains for serenity. For vibrant contrast, choose red, yellow, or orange. Lilac and pink curtains offer a gentler counterpoint.
The joy of white walls is that changing your curtains and a few accessories can transform a room completely.
So if you want to go from black and white monochrome to maximalist Boho, read on for my suggestions for the perfect curtain colors for white walls.
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How to Choose Curtain Colors for White Walls
Choosing a color scheme for a new room can be daunting, especially if you have white walls as the anchor. However, there are some questions you can work through to narrow down your color choices:
- Do you prefer neutral colors? For a sophisticated look, consider layering white with beige, cream, and taupe.
- Are vibrant colors your vibe? Mustard, teal, or orange create a retro feel.
- Do you like contrast but prefer cool colors? Blue and green have a calming effect.
- Black and white are a brilliant basis for Art Deco, while gray, blue, and green can create a coastal look.
Once you’ve come up with some specific ideas, compare them to my list of curtain colors that work well with white.
The Best Neutral Curtain Colors for White Walls
Using white walls as the base for decorating a room with tonal neutrals creates a tranquil, subtle effect, especially if the room is airy and spacious. Add depth and dimension through shades of white, such as ivory, eggshell, and cream.
White-on-white is a clean monochrome look, beloved by the new wave of Scandi interiors. Avoid falling into the trap of blandness by choosing curtains with a textured fabric and furnishings in warm neutrals to add interest.
White curtains are also an excellent choice to let as much light into a room as possible and make the window a frame for the view. Your curtains won’t obstruct the interplay between outside and inside.
Crisp linen or cotton curtains are fresh against white walls. Add accessories with pops of your favorite color to prevent the space from being too stark.
Combining white walls with off-white neutrals like pearl, ecru, and beige transforms a stark, sterile room with welcome warmth.
Try an ombre fabric with a color gradient or gentle stripes to give the curtains some weight and texture.
Another option is to select a subtle print that glows gently against white walls. A heavier fabric adds a luxurious touch and prevents a fine pattern from becoming cutesy.
Curtains in richer shades of beige and taupe warm up a room but remain unobtrusive. To enliven a neutral palette, look to a muted, chalky blue that will enhance the gentle ambiance.
Earthy browns are trending for household decor; introduce these shades through your curtains. Choose from rust, tan, or chocolate brown to enhance a colonial or safari-themed living room.
Darker curtains are also helpful for blocking out light in a bedroom or movie room. To avoid the curtains looking too heavy, keep the floor lighter and accessorize the room with brown, bronze, or copper. Another option is hanging double curtains, with the inner set white.
White and gray have reigned supreme in contemporary home interiors. The combination is graceful and sophisticated, but this season’s grays are saturated with color: look to smokey blue-grays, textured greige, and moody charcoal as curtain colors.
Charcoal curtains create a strong contrast against white walls. In an airy white and gray color palette, they aren’t overwhelming.
The Best Cool Curtain Colors for White Walls
Cool colors look gorgeous against pure white walls, painted with truly achromatic white that dazzles like snow.
I recommend cool curtain colors that shine against white walls from the blue and green palette. From powder blue to teal, blues, and greens always look fresh and alluring against a white background.
Blue and white color palettes are perennially popular in our homes.
Lighter blues are soothing, serene colors with a relaxing effect. Look to shades of aqua for coastal themes or duck-egg blue for French Provencal styles. Pale blue curtains are perfect against white bedroom walls for a serene sleeping space.
Blue curtains are ideal for a nursery, with white walls that are wipeable and easy to clean. Gentler blues won’t let your little one get overstimulated.
A rich royal blue adds depth to sparkling white walls. Include complementary burnt orange, leafy plants, and wicker accessories for a Boho feel.
Navy blue curtains look formal, stately, and elegant against white walls. They’re ideal for a minimalist aesthetic, forming a solid backdrop for architectural details. Navy works just as well as part of a maximalist aesthetic, allowing other colors to come to the foreground.
I adore the multiple shades of green that are appearing in our homes. This season’s greens differ from the burgundy and green that graced many dining rooms over the past decades. Contemporary greens are inspired by nature: earthy moss, fern green, and deep olive.
Green curtains pop against white walls, so they are an excellent way to introduce more color into your interior and bring it up-to-date. Light, sheer fabrics allow light into a room while offering some privacy.
Sage curtains offer the barest hint of green to a white canvas. Softer than pistachio, sage works well with a pared-back Nordic aesthetic in a living room, bedroom, or bathroom.
Darker ivy green can be dramatic against a white wall, but you can tone it down in a green-on-white botanical pattern. Green leaves or abstract designs are elegant for a white bedroom or dining room.
The Best Warm Curtain Colors for White Walls
When your walls are white with a warmer undertone – usually with a slight yellow – they form the perfect canvas for vibrant and creative use of red, yellow, orange, and pink.
You must be bold to opt for red curtains against a white expanse. I urge you to try the gorgeous sunbaked terracottas that are trending. These muted reds are less dramatic than pillar box shades.
Red curtains immediately add a vibrant warmth to your room, making the space cozy. They also draw your eye to the window, framing a beautiful view.
The advantage of white walls in a red-and-white color palette is that they soften the impact of too much red. If you already have a red rug or sofa, tone down the curtains by choosing a red print. Florals and plaids add a country feel to your home, whether English country house or farmhouse style.
The saying goes that yellow and white are fresh as a daisy. Indeed, all shades of yellow look sunny against white walls, and yellow curtains infuse a room with playful energy.
This season’s yellows range from butter to gold. The more exotic shades of bronze and saffron look magnificent in sumptuous fabrics, with white walls allowing heavy satin or velvet to shine.
If yellow and white are too bold for you, add calming complementary blue to the palette. Blues that tend towards teal look great with mustard and orange, creating a comfortable, welcoming atmosphere.
Florals always blossom against white walls but don’t have to be gaudy. A contemporary floral in yellow and green adds a charming touch to an English country house theme.
This season, orange is an earthy color that brightens a room without hurting the eyes. Fruity shades of peach and apricot are also inspired by nature and glow against white walls, especially those tending to off-white or cream.
With orange curtains demanding to be noticed, you don’t need many other colors in a room. Ensure there is a rug or artwork to pick up the orange so the curtains don’t look like a crazy, impulsive purchase.
Petal and blush pink are fast becoming neutrals in their own right, stepping out of the nursery. Embrace hot pink if you’re a Barbie-core fan, but consider the trending gentler shades.
Pale pink curtains glow against white walls and honey-colored wood. Add minty green accents for effortless chic.
Instead of white-on-white, use floaty pink curtains to add height and airiness to a room. Ground the color scheme with sleek gray and black.
This gentle purple shade is taking over from gray as a soft neutral, especially in nurseries. While lavender is slightly on the blue side and is cool-toned, lilac is warm. Use this romantic color for curtains in the living room, bedroom, and bathroom; keep the rest of the decor pared back to avoid a cutesy, girlish feel.
Choose a neutral curtain with muted stripes to add purple to a room more subtly. The color will be eye-catching but not overwhelming.
Final Thoughts on Color of Curtains that Go With White Walls
White walls form the perfect canvas for most color palettes and designs. Neutral shades work well against white, so long as you play with color and texture variations. Bold colors pop on white walls, with cooler shades like blue, green, and grey creating serene contrasts. Red, yellow, and orange offer lively and bold contrast, while warm lilac and pink are more subtle.
What color of curtains for white walls is your favorite? leave your comment below.