What is an Accent Color?

An accent color is a color used sparingly to add vibrancy and interest to a room.


An accent color is a powerful tool in interior design, used to bring life and character to a space with strategic pops of color. Unlike the primary colors and secondary colors in a room's color scheme, which set the overall tone and mood, an accent color stands out by being deliberately distinct, vivid, or bold. It’s the magic touch that can pull together various elements in a room, highlight architectural features, or draw attention to pieces of decor.

Adding an accent color doesn’t always mean choosing the brightest or most intense shade. It's about selecting a color that complements the existing palette while making a statement. The choice of an accent color can be inspired by a favorite piece of art, a unique furniture piece, or even a cherished collection. It's a way to inject personality and style into your design by using color thoughtfully and purposefully.

One of the great aspects of using an accent color is its flexibility. It can be easily changed out or updated to refresh the look of a room without a complete remodel. With the right accent color, even the most subdued space can be transformed into an inviting and dynamic area.


Accent colors are often used in throw pillows, vases, artwork, or even a feature wall. In some cases, an accent color might be applied to a ceiling to add an unexpected pop of color. Alternatively, it could be highlighted through smaller decor items like picture frames or lamps, or even in a single piece of bold furniture, like an electric blue armchair in a mainly neutral space.


  • How do I choose an accent color?

    Choose an accent color by considering the existing color palette in your room and opting for a shade that complements yet stands out. Look to your favorite items in the room for inspiration or think about the mood you want to evoke.

  • Can I use more than one accent color?

    Yes, you can use multiple accent colors, but it's important to maintain balance. Ensure that the colors complement each other and don't overwhelm the existing decor. A thoughtful approach will keep your space cohesive and harmonious.

  • How often should I change my accent color?

    Change your accent color as often as you like. It's an easy and cost-effective way to refresh your space. Seasonal changes, trends, or even personal milestones are great opportunities to introduce a new accent color.

Practical Application

To effectively use an accent color, start small with items that are easy to change, such as textiles (throw pillows, blankets) and decorative objects. This allows for flexibility and experimentation. Consider the emotional impact of your chosen color and its visual appeal from different angles in the room. Pay attention to lighting, as it can significantly affect how the accent color is perceived at different times of the day.