What paint colors go with red?

Updated April 17, 2017

The colour red actually encompasses a huge range of hues, from deep blood shades to pale clarets. Given this large spectrum of shades, you should be able to find paint colours to match red in every tint of the rainbow. To determine the best accent colours for your red paint or furniture, look at it in different lighting, from morning to evening. The accent paint you choose should complement your red at all times.


Nothing sets off red walls like pure white paint. Use it on its own with crimson walls for a clean, modern effect, or combine it with another accent shade, such as moss green or biscuit yellow. Pure white accents also look handsome with orange-red walls, pink trim and gold or brass elements. You can enliven white rooms with shiny red trim, windows and doors.

Beige tones work well with Chinese reds. Creams create more old-fashioned effects. Mix tomato red walls with cream and dark green trim to produce a country chic effect. This combination works especially well for kitchens. Accent with wood furniture and fresh flower arrangements.


Grays harmonise with almost every shade of red. Slate greys make darker reds sing. Rooms with lots of stone features, antiques or varnished dark wood can be complemented by scarlet reds and blue-grey trim. Silvers and other metals go well with pale reds and charcoal grey trim. Mix orange-red walls with dove grey trim, and accessorise with touches of coral and gold.


Bright cranberry reds go with pale milky yellow and pure white trim. Pair wheat yellow, raffia and oak shades with bluish reds. Fire reds can look appealing when matched with pale yellow-browns, dark browns and pale pinks. Gold tones give lift to deep brownish-reds.


A classic Chinoiserie-inspired pairing, black and red were made for each other. Red walls mated with black and white trim look crisp and retro. This combination has traditionally been favoured for crafting cheery 1950s-style kitchens.

To create an atmosphere of old-fashioned glamour, pair black trim with dark red walls, gold detailing, and peach accents. Cherry, pale red or coral tones look pretty and clean in juxtaposition with black and white moulding or windows. Deep reds look striking when paired with hot pink, chocolate and ebony accent colours.


A lettuce green picks up wine-coloured walls, while yellow-greens give zip to brownish-red shades. Pale green and deep red walls have a rustic elegance, while sunny khakis add heft to pale red interiors. Enliven terra cotta hues with grey-green trim, or give crimson rooms a wholesome feel with emerald green and white trim. Soft limes pair well with brick tones, while moss green and pure white trim look kicky when balanced by fiery orange and scarlet walls.


For blackened maroons and spicy blood reds, a light milky turquoise may prove the perfect foil. Set off dusty reds with sea greens, dark turquoises, pale blues or robin's egg shades. For an airy atmosphere, pair your blue and red walls with white furniture, glass accents and bamboo touches.

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About the Author

Emily Maggrett has been writing for more than eight years. Her fiction has appeared in "Jeopardy" and "Rivet" and her journalism has appeared in "The Cascadia Weekly" and "The Western Front." Maggrett holds a Bachelor of Arts in English literature from Western Washington University.