Blurring Paint Lines Over Doors & Trim: A Bold Interior Design Choice

Time for a change? Say goodbye to traditional trim, and update your home with these new paint ideas.

By Wendy Wrzos


A painted wall with a contrasting door and trim is a classic design. Natural wood or crisp white molding is something I never tire of seeing, but sometimes I think about changing it up a little.


The only rule in interior design right now is that there are no rules. Convention will always have its place, but if you’re thinking of revitalizing your living space with a paint job or two, now’s as good a time as any to try something different. Why not blur the edges a little, color outside the lines, and play around with some unique paint trim ideas?


Celebrate the Ordinary

Most of us wouldn’t give this door a moment of our time, but the homeowner decided to go with the unexpected, and added a touch of whimsy with her favorite color. Painting the trim orange draws unapologetic attention to the door, and you can’t help but wonder what might be on the other side.




Expand your Space

If at first glance we can’t see where a room begins and ends, it will always appear larger than it really is. This small apartment could easily look cluttered and cramped, but by deliberately ignoring the details, and painting absolutely everything white (window trim, walls, decorative molding, ceiling medallion, shelves, radiator, and patio door) they have managed to blur the boundaries and make the space feel more than twice its size.    




Frame a Gorgeous View

A lot of thought went into painting this attic window. By painting the trim the same color as the walls, the bare simplicity becomes a welcoming frame for the view outside. However, because they didn’t want the white trim around the window glass to be a distraction, they took the time to paint the exterior frame a deep periwinkle blue to mimic the sky. Love it.  




Hide the Awkward

If an ugly (yet practical) fixture is taking center stage (or you want to discourage people from using a certain door) make it disappear by painting it the same color as the wall. Not only will it blend in and be less noticeable, but your room will also seem more spacious. Forget what you think you should do. Not every item in your home needs to be a decoration. 




Highlight the Architecture and Create Calm

Everything in a room, from texture to color, adds visual noise. Monochromatic color schemes minimize what we have to look at, creating a calmer environment. Extending paint past where we think it should be stops our eyes from darting around a room and settling on the differences. 


Painting this window the same color as the walls and baseboard could almost seem like a mistake, but this timeless approach is actually a subtle way of making us appreciate it more while keeping its architectural integrity intact.     




Make it More Interesting

A quart of paint can go a long way. Without the glossy black trim on the baseboard, this room would have been just another empty, white room looking for its potential. Now, it oozes style, and with a few pieces of furniture, it will fit right into the pages of one of our favorite interior design magazines.  




Show Off a Little

In this renovated Parisian home, the decorative details would have been in close competition with the vintage mirror, so the homeowner made a (very) bold move and decided to paint everything out of the picture. Now, all we notice is the beauty of the aging speckles, the worn gold leaf, and the curved shape of the mirror.




Images used with permission, courtesy of

Next: How to Use Paint & Wallpaper to Tell a Story