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Should I paint my living room and dining room the same color?

Should I paint my living room and dining room the same color?

Quick Answers

Painting your living room and dining room the same color can create a cohesive look and help the spaces flow together. However, using different colors in each room allows you to add visual interest and define the spaces. Consider your goals, color preferences, and decor when deciding. Testing paint swatches can help finalize your decision. In the end, choose what feels right for your home.

Analyzing the Pros and Cons

Deciding whether to paint your living room and dining room the same color is a common decor dilemma. Here are some key factors to consider:

Pros of Using the Same Color

– Creates a uniform, seamless look. Painting both rooms the same color makes them appear connected. This can help open up smaller homes.

– Allows you to repeat a color you love. If you have a favorite color, using it in adjoining spaces lets you see more of it.

– Simplifies the design process. Choosing one color is easier than picking two coordinating shades.

– Makes furniture swapping easier. Pieces can be moved between rooms without clashing.

Cons of Using the Same Color

– Can look monotonous. Having no color variation between rooms may seem dull over time.

– Doesn’t define spaces. The open flow may make rooms feel less distinct from each other.

– Provides fewer creative outlets. Using one color limits ways to add visual interest.

– Makes updating more difficult. Both rooms would need repainting if you want a color change.

Key Factors to Consider

When deciding whether to paint your living and dining rooms the same, consider the following:

Your Design Goals

What do you want to achieve through your paint choice? If you want a cohesive, blended look, same colors can accomplish that. If you want to differentiate the rooms, go for different colors.

Room Size and Layout

In a small home, same colors can make rooms appear larger. With an open floor plan, it can increase flow. But in spacious, closed-off rooms, varied colors may be preferable.

Color Scheme Preferences

If you want a bold, dynamic scheme, contrasting colors are best. For a more relaxed vibe, neutral or same colors work well. But you can also do a soft color scheme with coordinating different tones.

Lighting and Undertones

Test your paint colors at different times of day. Lighting affects how colors look. Cool northern light vs. warm southern light may change your perception.

Furniture and Decor

Make sure your paint colors complement your furnishings. Same colors allow flexibility in swapping items between rooms. Different colors require more decor coordination.

Architectural Details

If the rooms have distinct architectural features like moldings or ceiling details, use color to highlight them. Neutrals may suit ornate spaces best.

Choosing Paint Colors

Once you’ve decided on same vs. different colors, choosing the actual shades takes care and experimentation. Here are some tips:

– Determine an overall color scheme and identify accent colors. A light neutral scheme is easy to work with.

– Collect paint swatches in colors you like. Bring home at least 3-5 options per room.

– Test swatches on walls at different times. Live with them a few days to gauge reactions.

– View swatches next to furniture, pillows, art etc. See how they coordinate.

– Capture swatches in photos. It reveals their undertones and how they interact with decor.

– Opt for opposite tones in each room for maximum contrast (light vs dark). For same colors, vary sheens.

– Don’t forget ceilings and trim. White ceilings feel airy. Colored trim adds personality.

Best Paint Colors for Living and Dining Rooms

Below are popular paint color choices for living and dining rooms:

Soothing Neutrals

Greige Warm taupe with grey undertones
Dove grey Silvery light grey with subtle purple
Alabaster Creamy off-white with yellow base

Nature-Inspired Hues

Sage green Calming pale green with grey undertone
Sky blue Airgy, peaceful blue
Terracotta Earthy orange-red

Sophisticated Tones

Navy blue Classic, anchoring deep blue
Charcoal Rich, smokey grey
Deep magenta Vibrant berry pink

Tips for Painting

Follow these tips for a smooth, flawless paint job:

– Properly prep walls by cleaning, patching holes, sanding etc. Use primer on bare drywall.

– Paint ceiling and trim first. Use painter’s tape for clean lines along baseboards and molding.

– Use good applicator tools like microfiber rollers and angled cutting brushes. Avoid foam rollers.

– Maintain a wet edge and work in sections to prevent lap marks. Load roller evenly.

– Sand lightly between coats with fine grit sandpaper. Dust walls before reapplying paint.

– Allow proper drying time between coats based on product directions. Humidity affects dry time.

– Work in good ventilation and wear protective equipment like goggles, mask, gloves as needed.

Sample Schemes for Same vs. Different Colors

Here are sample paint schemes for living and dining rooms in same and different colors:

Same Color Scheme

Living Room Dining Room
Walls: Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace (OC-65) Walls: Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace (OC-65)
Trim: Brilliant White (OC-63) Trim: Brilliant White (OC-63)
Ceiling: Brilliant White (OC-63) Ceiling: Brilliant White (OC-63)

Different Color Scheme

Living Room Dining Room
Walls: Sherwin-Williams Accessible Beige (SW 7036) Walls: Sherwin-Williams Copen Blue (SW 6238)
Trim: Sherwin-Williams Pure White (SW 7005) Trim: Sherwin-Williams Pure White (SW 7005)
Ceiling: Sherwin-Williams Pure White (SW 7005) Ceiling: Sherwin-Williams Pure White (SW 7005)


Deciding whether to paint your living and dining rooms the same color requires balancing your style preferences with practical considerations. Same colors promote an open, seamless feel which some homeowners love. But others favor definition through using different colors.

Test out paint swatches and visualize the options in your space. Think about how color affects mood and lighting. There is no universally right or wrong answer—go with what feels harmonious for your home. Just be sure to select attractive, versatile shades you’ll enjoy living with. Proper prep work and application technique will ensure your paint job has a polished, professional look.