Back to Journal

How to use paint creatively for low-budget designs

As the recession fears sink and the budgets lower, it’s time to be creative and learn how to transform a space just with a few coats of paint.

H+O Apartment
How to use paint creatively for low-budget designs
Clara Carlino de Paz
January 10, 2024

Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
This article was originally posted on Making Space, a Substack penned by our Cofounder, Matteo Grand. Subscribe below to receive more content just like this.

Few interior design elements are as cost-effective and versatile as paint. Long the hero of DIY projects and mini home renovations, paint can be a wonderful tool for even the most high-end designers around. In this article, we’ll discuss some chic ways you can use paint to elevate your next interior design project, without wiping the budget in one marble sweep. 

01. Accent walls

An accent wall is a wall in a room that is painted a different colour or design than the other walls. It is a popular trend in interior design because it can add depth and character to a space without overwhelming it. By choosing a bold colour or pattern for an accent wall, you can create a dramatic effect that transforms the entire room. Additionally, accent walls are a cost-effective way to update a room without having to repaint all of the walls – a must right now!

Colourful and interior design by Brandon Schubert

02. Arched elements

By painting arches on your walls or ceilings, you can add depth and an architectural feel to your design. For example, you could paint a single arch in a bold colour as a focal point, or you could create a series of smaller arches in a complementary colour to create a pattern, as seen below. The possibilities are endless when it comes to using paint to create arches in your interior design!

Arched mural by Racheal Jackson via Banyan Bridges

03. Murals

Murals have been around since the beginning of time, and it’s for good reason; they are stunning pieces of art that captivate occupants and guests alike. There are few things more chic than a mural, so make sure to commission a project from a local artist. We’re sure the results will be incredible.

Georgian villa with Greek influences in Atherton, California. Art studio Sergey Konstantinov,  Interior Design by Suzanne Tucker, and Architecture by Andrew Skurman

04. Doors as pops of colour

Doors are beautiful in any shade; we won’t even debate that. However, some wood stains can clash with the rest of an interior design and break the cohesiveness designers strive for. In your next design, you can try painting the doors to use as much of the colour real estate as possible. By playing with the door feature, you’ll be able to create dimension and imbue more playfulness into your design. Win-win in our books!

Design by Mise en Scène via Côté Maison

05. Ceilings; the forgotten star

Long gone are the days of white ceilings and boring sleepless nights only accompanied by the visual silence of the walls. Embrace the fun and by painting your next project’s ceilings a colour; whether it is the same one as the walls or not. It will give you a much more polished look and might even bring the design together. Can you tell we love this?

Beautiful dark green bedroom with painted ceilings via The Nordroom

06. Upcycling is the name of the game

Your clients have some furniture that’s falling apart but has great bones? Don’t throw it away. Instead, opt for the sustainable route and give it a good wash of paint. If well coordinated with the rest of the design, the result will be chic and elegant.

Bold colourful chairs by Crown Paints

07. Make space by delineating it

It is a common misconception that painting a whole residential space in one colour will make it feel larger and more flowing. In fact, painting it in different colours can make the experience of the occupant feel more vibrant and diverse; like a sensory experience every time they cross the door. 

Subtle colour changes between rooms by Lonika Chande

Talking about paint... Have you seen our incredible paint selection? Here are some of our favourite colours and brands.

If you enjoy professional interior design content and want to take your interior design career to the next level, make sure to subscribe to our newsletter.