Coastal Colors: Tropical

From bright purples to dazzling pinks, lime greens to sunny yellows, this scheme demands hot colors and cool drinks.

Brightly decorated porch

Jean Allsopp

Tropical Punch

Bold and adventurous, a tropical palette infuses interiors with energy and imagination. Bring flashy hues into your home and you won’t have to travel far to feel like you’re on vacation.

Living -room-purple-ceiling

Deborah Whitlaw Llewellyn

Be Confident

Throw the rules out the window and use colors you love where you’ll see them most often. In this living room, shades of purple on the ceiling, trim, and furniture unify the space.

Window seat with tropical cushions

Celia Pearson

Bold & Beautiful

Don’t be afraid to mix bold patterns. When in the same palette of vibrant hues, the patterns don’t have to match.


Deborah Whitlaw Llewellyn

Color With Care

Use bright colors on walls and darker hues on furniture. (For a visual lift, paint the ceiling a light shade.) Unify the look with accessories in similar hues, but exercise restraint―bright colors don’t need much embellishment.

Green and white striped door with pink towel

Jean Allsopp

Easy Does It

Make strong colors stand out by introducing them in small doses. Painting accents in one or two bold hues is an old island trick.

Purple house exterior

J. Savage Gibson

Stop Traffic

Select two analogous colors for your home’s exterior, and a complementary hue to accent doors and shutters. You’ll bring the palette of the islands home and make sure delivery trucks never pass you by.


Celia Pearson

Calm Down

Tame a tropical palette by pairing it with warm woods. Just as white gives colors room to breathe, natural woods absorb their vibrancy. The result is vivid but not overbearing.

Pink shutters with green deck chair

Deborah Whitlaw Llewellyn

All or Nothing

Be courageous and experiment with bold color combinations indoors and out. The trick is to use colors of the same intensity. A rich purple saturated with red tones might overwhelm a light spring green. But as shown on this Caribbean patio, a more intense lime green holds its own against deep purple’s punch.


No-Fail Tropical #1

Cupid by Ace


No-Fail Tropical #2

Boysenberry by Rodda Paint


No-Fail Tropical #3

Can't Miss Lime by Valspar


No-Fail Tropical #4

Zoey Island by Martin Senour Paints


No-Fail Tropical #5

Framboise by Sherwin-Williams

Printed from: