Close Give Feedback
Resene Paints - home page
Follow us on Facebook Follow us on Pinterest Follow us on Instagram Follow us on YouTube

Wintry palettes that will transcend seasons

From the Resene decorating blog

Wintry colours don’t always get a good rap. The idea can bring to mind cloudy greys or gloomy, muddy browns when in fact, used in rich, saturated tones in wintry shades can add warmth and drama to a room.

A cosy olive green interior

Olive green hues, like this wall painted in Resene Scrub, are versatile shades that can work in cosy wintry spaces, or fresher spring and summer-inspired rooms.

Paler rear wall painted in Resene Lemon Grass, floor in Resene Quarter Lemon Grass, bookshelf and table in Resene Contour, chair in Resene Scrub, light fitting in Resene Nirvana and tall vase on the table in Resene Tic Tac Toe. On the shelf, the boxes are painted in Resene Green Days and Resene Tic Tac Toe with vases and pots in Resene Lemon Grass, Resene Thorndon Cream, Resene Tic Tac Toe, Resene Nirvana and Resene Scrub. Spot vase from Nood, candle from The Warehouse. Project by Vanessa Nouwens, image by Bryce Carleton.

Used with some thought and planning the right wintry shades can be stylish, sophisticated and timeless, for a cohesive space that works all year round.

Here are some wintry ideas to try to bring cosiness, that is inviting and comforting rather than oppressive, to your home.

Wintry neutrals

Resene Colour Expert Brenda Ngatai suggests off-whites with a subtle grey undertone, such as Resene Athens Grey, Resene House White or Resene Merino, provide a very versatile base for your interiors.

“Put these three examples side-by-side and you can see how different they are, yet they all work really well with a fresh, clean white such as the classic Resene Alabaster used on ceilings and architraves,” Brenda says.

Opting for chocolatey tones is another way to keep your space feeling modern and up-to-date, she adds. “Consider chocolate blacks such as Resene Dark Chocolate or Resene Bokara Grey. They’re colours with good depth.”

For added colour, to pair with your neutrals, Brenda suggests the dusky terracotta pink of Resene Soiree or Resene Amaranth for a soft, subdued ochre brown.

“All these rich dark colours look stunning with touches of copper or brass metallic, which brings in additional dimension and texture to the finished design.”

Brenda also suggests embracing the idea of a statement wall to elevate wintry spaces with more colour: “Some interior walls are screaming out for colour!” And having a bolder colour on just one wall can be a manageable way to change out seasonal shades, without a huge expense, if you like variety and change.

Try a muted note of Resene Duck Egg Blue, which also has a subtle grey undertone to keep to a neutral theme. Or try something punchier like Resene Forty Six or fresher like Resene Rivergum.

Resene Colour Expert Meryl Southey also suggests neutrals and whites which can morph between cool or warm as stunning background colours for all seasons.

“They can balance the darker, richer tones autumn and winter bring, whilst keeping the rooms bright and fresh for summer.”

Painting your walls in a white which has some depth or a hint of yellow undertone, such as Resene Spanish White or Resene Solitaire, will lend rooms an overall feeling of warmth for those winter days, she says. “Especially when layered with pattern and texture. They can then be easily manipulated to feel cool and crisp when switching out to summer decor.”

A moody bedroom with rich jewel tones

Rich jewel tones, like the deep emerald of these walls painted in Resene Forest Green, make for a moody winter look that needs only a fresh, floral note of Resene Coral Tree on the headboard and a side table to make it perfect for all seasons. Floor finished in Resene Colorwood Breathe Easy, side table in Resene Meringue, tall and round vases in Resene Coral Tree and DIY artwork in Resene Coral Tree and Resene Meringue. Bedding, faux flowers and floral cushion from Adairs, striped cushion from Mocka, throw from H&M Home. Project by Vanessa Nouwens, image by Bryce Carleton.

Embrace the ‘in-between’

For a successful seasonal make-over experiment with shades that are synonymous with the ‘in-between’ seasons of spring and autumn.

“Winter and summer are the two seasons where switching up colour and decor feels most beneficial,” Meryl says. “Most of us want to embrace the bright, cherry season of summer and create a warm, cosy feel for winter, but you can start introducing winter or summer palettes in spring and autumn which offer softer versions of winter and summer.”

Complex neutrals can work well as these in-between colours. They can work year-round, allowing you to play with other seasonal contrast colours by rotating decor and decorative items that are easy to repaint or swap out. “Most people aren’t going to want a new colour scheme every season,” she sensibly points out.

Resene Kinship is a warm, off-white – nearly beige that works well as a multi-seasonal background colour, Meryl says. “It can be mixed with deep greys for winter such as Resene Four Winds and Resene Westminster, and accented with a luscious red such as Resene Pandemonium.” In warmer months you can sub in decor pieces or team it with lighter blues like Resene Morning Haze or whites such as Resene Sea Fog and steely metallics.

“Resene Stepping Stone is a light grey and beige blend that pairs well with warm browns such as Resene Porter and Resene Courtyard, accented with mid greens and copper browns like Resene Waiouru and Resene Trek. In summer, you could switch out these accents for crisp whites and rich blues.”

Soft olive greens like Resene Contour are another good, versatile colour that works well with a wintry palette, but with its hint of yellow undertone, can easily be morphed into a summer palette, Meryl says.

“Team it with deeper earthy tones such as Resene Rocky Point, lighter lime greens like Resene Nirvana, accented with ochre greens such as Resene Bullwhip and warm whites like Resene Rice Cake.

In summer, adding botanical prints like Resene Wallpaper Collection 38825-2 and wood finishes in Resene Colorwood Mid Greywash or Resene Colorwood Natural for furniture will add a fresh vibe.

Warm neutrals are the perfect palette for a winterey room

Warm neutrals with a bold contrast make a perfect backdrop for a wintery room, in which you can swap out seasonal pieces to suit.

The top rear wall is painted in Resene Double Merino with lower wall in Resene Quarter Merino, top of the wall shelf in Resene Quarter Merino with Resene FX Paint Effects Medium mixed with Resene Foggy Grey, floor in Resene Foggy Grey with Resene FX Paint Effects Medium mixed with Resene Quarter Merino, left wall in Resene Quarter Karaka, stool in Resene Quarter Crisp Green, mirror in Resene Nero and planter in Resene Quarter Merino. Project by Kate Alexander, image by Bryce Carleton.

Transform a room between seasons with different textures and finishes

The use of different textures and finishes can be a very cost-effective way to transform a room between seasons.

Wall painted in Resene Cloud, floor in Resene Half Cloud, headboard shelf in Resene FX Metallic Pure Pewter over a base colour of Resene Chicago, light fitting in Resene Half Gravel, side table in Resene FX Metallic Proton over a base of Resene Copyrite, vase in Resene FX Metallic Proton, ball decoration in Resene FX Metallic Pure Pewter, bowl in Resene Cloudy and textured DIY artwork in Resene FX Metallic Pure Pewter. Candlesticks in Resene Copyrite and Resene Metallic Pure Pewter. Bedlinen from Adairs, cushion from Freedom, candleholders from Superette, metallic flowers from Flux Boutique. Project by Vanessa Nouwens, image by Bryce Carleton.

Creating a cocoon

The instinct to create a warm cosy space is very strong in some of us in winter! Meryl suggests trying deep browns as the perfect place to start.

“There is nothing more cocooning than deeper walls. Try a room with moody brown walls in Resene Outlaw paired with neutrals like Resene Rockbottom, Resene Epitome and Resene Rice Cake.

“Off-set the deep browns with greens such as Resene Vantage Point and to transform the space for summer, add soft pinks and natural sheer, floaty curtains.

Seasonal switch outs

Meryl suggests adding texture and pattern to spaces through Resene wallpaper and fabric, as a simple, often inexpensive way to change the feel of a room almost instantly, without having to change your entire colour scheme each season.

“Bring inside seasonal pieces from outdoors like interesting shaped twigs in a vase in winter. Switch them to sunflowers in summer.

“You can also play with scents using room sprays and candles as quite an effective way of invoking different seasons. Try spice and vanilla in winter, and move to sea salt and linen in summer.”

Creating ambience with painted features, lamps and rugs are other ways to switch up rooms, with even one or two carefully thought out changes able to completely change the seasonal feel of the space, with the cost and effort of redecorating.

Brenda also suggests experimenting with different, changeable textiles for seasonal experimentation that won’t break the bank. “Change cushions and throws, adding more texture in winter months with woven patterns, velvets, and woollen fabrics. Opt for warmer, neutral colours or richer dark tones in your textiles,” she says, adding that switching out artwork can also quickly change the feel of a room.

“Something a designer friend said to me once has always stuck with me: ‘Put some of your art pieces to rest’.

“Take some off the wall for a few months. Keep the pieces up that add to a wintry vibe, then replace them with pieces that create a summer or spring vibe. I’ve done this and it does make a good change to the look and feel of a room.

“When it's time to change again and bring back the ‘resting’ pieces, it’s like seeing your dear old friends again.”

Resene Meringue

Resene Breathe Easy

Resene Amaranth

Resene Kinship

Resene Stepping Stone

Resene Four Winds

Resene Epitome

Resene Courtyard

Resene Tic Tac Toe

Resene Mid Greywash

Resene Vantage Point

Resene Outlaw

Resene Morning Haze

Resene Green Days

Resene Contour

Resene Westminster

Resene Rocky Point

Resene Soiree

Resene Pandemonium

Resene Trek

Resene Porter

Resene Forty Six

Resene Dark Chocolate

May 31, 2023

For help choosing colours, products and effects finishes to cosy up your home, visit your local Resene ColorShop, ask a Resene Colour Expert online or book a Resene Colour Consultation.

Book a colour consult | Ask a Colour Expert | Ask a Paint Expert

Resene's decorating blog

Paint your home beautiful! Discover the latest decorating trends, tips and colour news.

Previous article
Previous «
Your winter maintenance checklist

Return to the blog home page
Blog home

View the latest trends, tips and news

Next article
» Next

Palette cleanser


Order online now:
Testpots | Paints | Primers and Sealers | Stains | Clears | Accessories

Get inspired Get inspired ! Subscribe      Get saving Get saving ! Apply for a DIY card

Resene Paints Ltd

Can't find what you're looking for? Ask us!

Resene Paints Ltd   –

Follow us on Facebook Follow us on Pinterest Follow us on Instagram Follow us on YouTube
Videos on how to paint and stain your house

Welcome to our World of Colour!™
Colours shown on this website are a representation only. Please refer to the actual paint or product sample. Resene colour charts, testpots and samples are available for ordering online.   See measurements/conversions for more details on how electronic colour values are achieved.

What's new | Specifiers | Painters | DIYers | Artists | Kids | Sitemap | Home | TOP ⇧