What colors go well with olive green paint?

Updated April 07, 2017

Although it had fallen out of favour since the 1970s, olive green is making a comeback as a home decor colour. It is used as a paint colour on walls, in prints for furniture and as an accent colour in pillows and art prints. When used as a dominant colour on walls, for example, there are several colour palettes that work with olive green.

Black, Cream and Silver

Take the hippie out of the olive green and streamline the colour by accenting with fall's military-inspired colour palette of black, cream and silver. Though pure white can be too stark, cream provides a clean but still modern compliment to olive green walls. Decorate the room with cream furniture; cream, black and olive green throw pillows; and clean-line accents, such as vases and picture frames, in brushed silver or pewter, like the buttons on a military coat. Use accents sparingly so they don't overwhelm the modern lines and simple colour palette of this military look.


Green's opposite on the colour wheel is purple, so accent your olive green walls with its complementary shade, plum. The rich purple colour harmonises with olive green's depth, providing pleasing contrast and stability to your room. While too much plum can overwhelm a room, use the colour in accent pieces such as a wingback chair, throw pillows, art prints and rugs. Plum lends itself well to textures such as velvets and chenilles, so add depth through a variety of fabrics.

Spice Tones

Create a room with romance and moody richness by accenting olive green walls with a spice-inspired palette of golds, oranges and reds. Think saffron, turmeric and paprika as you choose your pieces and bring the colours to life with rich fabrics and trims. Velvet couches in deep red or warm gold, brocade throw pillows with copper metallic threading and accent chairs or rugs in burnt orange complement olive green walls. Pieces with patterns such as stripes or tribal prints help blend the analogous colour palette seamlessly.

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About the Author

Nadia Nygaard has been writing and editing since 2005. She is published in "Farm and Ranch Living" and has edited projects as diverse as grant proposals, medical dissertations and tenant law handbooks. She is a graduate of the University of Washington with a Bachelor of Arts in English and women's studies.