Color Ideas for Painting Dining Rooms

Updated February 21, 2017

The colours in a dining room have a psychological impact on those sitting down at the table for a meal. Because the wall colour in a dining room is a major element in the room's design, select a paint colour that creates an atmosphere that is both lively and relaxing.


The colour red induces a sense of excitement. A passionate colour, red is often used in restaurants because the colour stimulates the appetite. Use red in your formal dining room, pairing it with white trim and accessories. Select a shade of red that leans more toward apple red or with an orange undertone, but stay away from Chinese red or fire engine red as these shades may make diners feel overly anxious after a brief time.


Dining rooms with little natural light or on the smaller side may benefit from the colour green. Green conveys a sense of well being, of good health and is associated with natural settings, such as meadows, and aromas such as spring rain.

Leafy green walls with complementary yellow make a dining room feel lively and fresh without overstimulating diners' senses.


Darker shades of blue bring elegance and sophistication to a dining room. This cool colour pairs well with pale grey or creamy yellow. Use the lighter tones for trim and in fabric patterns.

Paler shades of blue offer a sense of serenity to the dining area; diners will enjoy lingering over a meal and engaging in conversation. Pair he lighter shades with touches of bolder colours for visual interest.


From candyfloss to salmon to clay, pink is more closely associated with little girls' rooms and patios than the dining room. The darker end of this spectrum, however, lends itself to a sense of conviviality and eclecticism that may appeal to those seeking the unusual.

The reddish pink of sunsets, the subtle pink of clay tiles or the more yellow pink of sandy beaches offers a wide range of options. Paired with yellow the effect is tropical. Paired with deeper blue the effect is homey. Add touches of grey, and the overall appeal is more urban and contemporary. Avoid bubblegum or lipstick pink as these tend to invoke a sense of restlessness, as do the brighter red shades.


Considered a neutral colour, lighter shades of brown bring about a sense of calm and quiet. Richer tones, however, such as cocoa or ginger, create a livelier feel, and are likely to prove more stimulating in both appetite and conversation than the lighter shades. Paired with eggshell white or pale blue, the darker tones become more sophisticated in their appeal.

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About the Author

Shelly McRae is a freelance writer residing in Phoenix, Ariz. Having earned an associate degree from Glendale Community College with a major in graphic design and technical writing, she turned to online writing. McRae has written articles for multiple websites, drawing on her experience in the home improvement industry and hydroponic gardening.