Ideas to separate two colors of paint in a wall

Updated February 21, 2017

Decorating your home with paint adds design interest, but it can be a challenge to separate two colours of paint on a shared wall. A living area that blends into a dining room or a hallway that flows into a kitchen may have completely different paint colours, but still be part of the same visual plane. There are a few ways you can create a visual break point on the wall without completely redesigning your room.

Decorative Molding

Decorative moulding is most often used to separate a wall horizontally, as in a chair rail or wainscoting. Crown and shoe moulding also run horizontally along the floor or the ceiling as an accent. Running a strip of decorative moulding vertically on the wall can separate two colours of paint. Vertical moulding also emphasises the room separation more emphatically than the two paint colours. Coordinating the decorative moulding to existing crown or shoe moulding or tying in the chair rail from a nearby space maintains continuity.


A thin fabric curtain hanging on the wall works to separate two colours of paint in adjacent rooms. As long as the fabric coordinates with both wall colours and the rest of the decor in both rooms, the separation appears to be an integrated part of the design plan. Fabric attached as a single strip to the top and the bottom of the wall firmly holds it in place. A window can also act as a natural separation point with a curtain hung from the ceiling to the floor.


A doorway or a window between two rooms makes for a convenient separation point. The moulding around the doorway or the window is a natural separation; you can enhance it with a distinct paint line that extends directly above the doorway or at the top and bottom of the window.


A 1-inch to 2-inch vertical stripe of neutral colour between two paint colours on a shared wall is a simple separation technique. The neutral-coloured break stops the eye as it travels around the space and emphasises the two distinct areas.

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About the Author

Katherine Kally is a freelance writer specializing in eco-friendly home-improvement projects, practical craft ideas and cost-effective decorating solutions. Kally's work has been featured on sites across the Web. She holds a Bachelor of Science in psychology from the University of South Carolina and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.