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Should I paint my walls orange?

Should I paint my walls orange?

Orange is a bold, vibrant color that can make a dramatic statement in any room. If you’re considering painting your walls orange, there are a few key factors to consider before taking the plunge. In this article, we’ll explore the pros and cons of orange walls, look at suitable rooms and styles, provide color pairing ideas, and give tips for applying orange paint effectively. With the right approach, orange walls can look fresh, energetic and stylish in your home.

The Pros of Orange Walls

Here are some of the benefits that come with painting your walls orange:

  • Orange makes a bold, dramatic statement. It immediately catches the eye and sets a lively, vibrant mood in a room.
  • It brings warmth and energy to a space. Orange evokes summertime, fire, and the sun – filling a room with visual warmth.
  • Orange works with many styles. It can look modern and edgy, rustic and earthy, or retro and funky depending on the shade.
  • It encourages creativity and conversation. Orange sparks enthusiasm and interaction – perfect for a kids’ room or family area.
  • Orange makes a small room feel more spacious. Its stimulating effect gives the illusion of expanded space.

So if you want to liven up a room, get creative juices flowing, or add warmth to a small space, orange walls can get the job done. The color packs a visual punch.

The Cons of Orange Walls

However, there are also a few potential drawbacks with orange walls to keep in mind:

  • Orange can be overwhelming. Too much orange or the wrong shade can feel energetic to the point of chaos.
  • It’s not relaxing. While vibrant, orange may not create the most tranquil or zen environment.
  • Orange absorbs natural light. Its bold color can make rooms feel slightly darker during the day.
  • It’s difficult to match with furniture and decor. Orange requires careful color coordination for a put-together look.
  • Painting over it is hard. Orange is a stubborn color to cover up if you change your mind down the track.

So orange paint can be polarizing – you need to be sure you want a punchy, energetic color that makes a statement. Test it out first with swatches to ensure the orange tone works with your overall design vision.

What Rooms Work Best?

What rooms in your home allow orange walls to shine? Here are some spaces where orange can look fantastic:

  • Kitchen – Orange evokes appetites and provides an uplifting backsplash color. Use deeper shades for drama.
  • Dining room – Energize your dining space with tangerine or burnt orange walls.
  • Bathroom – Orange makes a refreshing, spa-like statement in bathrooms. Try lighter peach tones.
  • Kids’ rooms – There are few colors more fun and playful than orange for a youngster’s room.
  • Offices and studies – Orange walls help stimulate mental focus and creativity.
  • Basements and garages – Brighten up bare concrete floors and walls with orange paint.

When selecting the perfect orange hue, consider the room’s purpose along with the amount of natural sunlight it receives.

Which Decor Styles Work Best?

Orange adapts well to many interior design styles. Here are some of the most complementary:

  • Modern – A vivid orange accent wall looks great against crisp white and sleek modern furniture.
  • Eclectic – Quirky, funky styles mix seamlessly with bright, punchy orange walls.
  • Rustic – Try a terra-cotta orange with exposed wood beams and textured furnishings.
  • Retro – Deep oranges, curved silhouettes and retro furniture channels the 1970s.
  • Tropical – Oranges and peach hues complement tropical plants and rattan or bamboo furniture.

Overall, decor with sleek lines, playful elements, natural materials and artwork suit orange walls best. Avoid ornate traditional styles that will clash.

Choosing an Orange Shade

From bold tangerine to soft peach, orange has a wide spectrum of shades to pick from. Common orange paint colors include:

  • Bright orange – Energetic and playful. Risk of becoming overwhelming.
  • Burnt or rust orange – Earthy yet dramatic. Suits bold accents.
  • Coral – Vibrant and refreshing. Works well in beachy rooms.
  • Terra-cotta – A warm, soothing orange tone popular for Spanish styles.
  • Peach – Subtle and sweet. The safest orange choice.

Test out swatches in different lights before deciding, as orange can look very different on a small sample vs. an entire wall.

Pairing Colors with Orange

Choosing the right accent colors is crucial for orange walls to look cohesive. Here are some foolproof color combinations:

Accent Colors How it Looks
Cream or white Fresh and summery
Blue Coastal chic
Green Tropical, earthy
Brown Rustic autumnal
Grey Sleek modern

Avoid pairing orange with reds, yellows or busy patterns. Simple is best. Let the orange be the star.

Tips for Applying Orange Paint

Using some proper prep and painting techniques will ensure your orange walls look their best:

  • Prime walls first with an oil-based primer. This helps the orange paint go on smoothly.
  • Do a test patch first in the room and view in both natural and artificial light.
  • Use a mini roller and high quality paint to minimize brush strokes.
  • Apply two coats of paint to fully cover and allow to fully dry between coats.
  • Maintain good ventilation and air flow while painting orange, as it has a strong odor.
  • Use painter’s tape to create clean edges along ceilings, baseboards, windows and doors.

Take your time prepping the walls and applying the paint. Orange has superb coverage but any imperfections will be noticeable.

Still Unsure? Consider Wallpaper or Accent Walls

If you’re unsure about orange for entire walls, consider these alternatives:

  • Orange geometric or floral wallpaper – Provides a big visual impact without the same level of commitment as paint.
  • Orange accent wall – Paint just one wall orange to create a focal point without overwhelming a space.
  • Orange wall tiles – Add orange in a backsplash, shower recess or behind a stove.

There are many ways to experiment with orange without taking the full paint plunge. Try removable wallpaper or paint just one accent wall first.


Painting your walls orange is a bold, brave move that pays off when done right. Choose the right shade and space, pair with simple accent colors, and prep and paint the walls properly. Orange can look fresh and contemporary or warm and rustic depending on your approach. If you’re feeling adventurous, orange walls bring unmatched energy and flair when executed well.