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        a kids nursery with color-blocked zones for the closet and reading

        Kids' Rooms

        Coloring Outside the Lines: Kids Room Paint Ideas

        Choosing a color scheme that will last them from tot to teen might feel like an uphill battle; how to be sweet, not saccharine, playful, not cuckoo—the choices (and potential pitfalls) might feel endless. If this feels all too familiar, you're in luck! You don't need to stand in front of the dreaded wall of paint chips. You don't need to hand your Saturday over to Pinterest. These kids' room painting ideas your little one will love can be easy and—dare we say it?—fun. Backdrop's co-founder Natalie Ebel breaks it down.

        Written By
        Natalie Ebel

        Color-Blocked Zones

        Create geometrical shapes with horizontal lines, backsplash walls, and contrasting trim. How to get it? Use painter’s tape to create your line. Check its level by ensuring the line is the same distance to the floor at varying points along the wall with a yardstick or measuring tape, or go digital with a level app on your phone. Press the tape firmly to the wall. Pro tip: Remove the tape before the paint is completely dry for a sharper line. Primary shades in color-blocking patterns create a sense of playful irreverence. The trick to primary colors is selecting a hue that feels intentional rather than trite. Deep, clean blue FORMENTERA and pared-back red NEGRONI offer a cheeky twist to traditional red, white, and blue. A horizontal splash of continuous color lends the room cohesion. Create “zones” within a space, defined by color.


        Photo: ​​@blakewmackay
        color-blocked nursery with red and blue primary colorscolor-blocked nursery with red and blue primary colors

        Wrap Around

        Selecting a shade that’s a twist on the traditional keeps things feeling fresh. Here is the horizontal color block again, with a wraparound playful pop of rosy mauve shade JAWBREAKER. We also love the bedside table painted the same color as the wall behind it. Walls seem to become three-dimensional when the same paint appears on a piece of your kid's furniture.


        Photo: @bbrill
        wraparound chair rail in a mauve paintwraparound chair rail in a mauve paint

        Blogger Beige

        If beige for baby seems the pinnacle of boring, we’re here to disagree. Contemporary gray-beiges like MORNING RITUAL promote a sense of hygge-like warmth and serenity. As a highly adaptable color scheme, they will go well in any room but are particularly useful when trying to make the most of small spaces. Paired with bare wood furniture and quiet neutrals, they are equal parts chic and harmonious. Crisp white trim on walls and furniture will make the overall effect clean and bright. A fresh coat of white semi-gloss will revive even the most loved bedroom furniture.

        Photo: @workingholidaystudio
        a Scandi kids room painted neutral beigea Scandi kids room painted neutral beige

        Pattern Play

        Instead of sticking with strictly geometric shapes, embrace the organic with hand-painted patterns and accents. These perfectly imperfect stripes in TANLINES embrace geometry while maintaining a sense of energy. Use painter’s tape here for a more controlled line, or enhance the irregular line by varying stripe width.

        Photo: ​​@caitmccusk
        imperfect stripes painted in tanlines in a kids room imperfect stripes painted in tanlines in a kids room

        Go Bold

        An irregular half wall in DARK ARTS makes a bold statement particularly well suited for those old enough to start defining their own space. If you don’t feel comfortable freestyling the horizon line, we recommend marking it in pencil and using a smaller roller to control the feathered edge. This look is also great as a two-toned wall in complementary shades.

        Photo: ​​@caitmccusk
        paint an irregular edge in a kids room for a fun, youthful finishpaint an irregular edge in a kids room for a fun, youthful finish

        Find Inspiration in an Object

        Looking for a color scheme? You might just find it in an object you love. Find an item you love—this can be an artwork, kids rug, piece of furniture or patterned fabric—whatever piques your interest. Build your palette around this item and find ways to echo the colors throughout the space. The retro lounge chair here makes a great case for a whimsical beachy palette: APERITIVO HOUR (deep, dark peach) paired with corals, lavenders, pinks, and blues that have about the same saturation are repeated in the space.

        Photo: @chloefluery
        use an object to inspire kids room paint ideasuse an object to inspire kids room paint ideas

        Catch Some Color

        There are few decorating opportunities that offer more of a chance for play than a kids’ room. However choosing a complex color scheme can be nerve wracking for the color-shy or inexperienced. Because paint is inexpensive we recommend starting with elements that are less flexible like furniture, kids art décor and textiles and building your palette from there. Here, the textile motif of pink, yellow, purple, and white is echoed throughout the walls and furniture.

        Photo: @chloefluery
        colorful pink kids roomcolorful pink kids room

        Paint the Fifth Wall

        Create a cocoon-like sense of peace and calm by painting all five walls. Here, ROSE QUARTZ’s warm pinky-gray tones strike the perfect balance, providing a warm pop of color while still feeling neutral and lasting.

        Photo: @cinquiemegaucheinteriors
        painting all walls and the ceiling one color in a kids nurserypainting all walls and the ceiling one color in a kids nursery

        All-Day Sunset

        Another way to incorporate the fifth wall is to choose a deep peachy hue, evoking a sunset-like quality that will last all day. Painting all five walls will maximize that golden hour vibe. Simple, but effective.


        Photo: @katepearcevintage
        all walls and ceiling painted sunset huesall walls and ceiling painted sunset hues

        A New Neutral

        Pink and blue hues are decidedly nursery classics. If you’re looking to go a little more traditional, make it fresh by choosing a muted shade that will pair cohesively with your home. This neutral pink nursery is subtly rosy in the shade MODERN LOVE, a warm, muted don’t-worry-it’s-not-too-pink shade that works well in any room. Sweet for baby, but is as adaptable as your little one.


        Photo: @honeybris
        a pink room with painted dressera pink room with painted dresser

        Natalie's tips to bring these paint ideas for kids' rooms to life:

        • Go green: Depending on the ingredients used and the way it’s developed, the paint itself can be really harmful to the environment. Backdrop paints are ultra low odor, low VOC, and Green Wise Certified—meeting the most stringent standards set by California’s South Coast Air Management Office. We think they’re great for every room, definitely including nurseries and children’s rooms.

        • Pick your finish: Backdrop's Standard Finish is a great option for any room, however if you are looking for something that can take a bit more of a beating, we recommend our Semi-Gloss Finish, great for any areas that get a little more action such as kitchens and bathrooms.

        • Prep, prep, prep: Before you apply your first coat, it’s crucial that all surfaces are inspected for cracks, holes, dents, or other imperfections. Wipe down baseboards, fill any imperfections with spackle, and tape off edges.

        • Be generous. If your roller is saturated enough to provide an even layer of paint, you’re doing something right.

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        Tanlines Paint, Deep YellowTanlines Paint, Deep Yellow
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        Natalie Ebel

        Natalie Ebel

        Natalie Ebel is the co-founder of Backdrop, along with her husband, Caleb Ebel.

        The idea for Backdrop was created after too many trips to the hardware store searching for a bright white for their first daughter's nursery in 2018. They saw firsthand how impactful color can be on a space but found the process of painting to be unnecessarily painful. Backdrop changes that via a curated palette to eliminate decision paralysis, a simple sampling process, and high-quality products. Backdrop is proudly the first Climate Neutral Certified paint brand, and their premium paints are Green Wise Certified, low-VOC, and low-odor. Backdrop partners with the International Rescue Committee, a non-profit responding to global humanitarian crises and helps people in need from conflict and disaster to survive and gain control of their futures.

        Natalie lives in Los Angeles with her husband, 2 children, and a basset hound called Winston.