Wall panelling is a great way to transform all sorts of different interior spaces, from a modern living room to a small bathroom or a historic home renovation. Luckily when it comes to panelling there are so many styles out there to suit your house and personal aesthetic. Panelling can often be associated with historic homes or country houses but we have seen a renaissance of panelling in a variety of more contemporary spaces. It is an easy and effective way to add texture and depth to any space and a simple way to add shape into a featureless room. We share five simple yet effective wall panelling colour ideas to add character to your home, from bold paint colours to subtle hues. We’ve got all the inspiration you need! Edward's Conservatory with panelling painted in 'French Grey' and ceiling in 'Brimstone' What is wall panelling? Traditionally wall panelling was used to add insulation between a room and bare wall or brick, but nowadays interior wall panelling has become more of a decorative feature. Most commonly made out of stripes of wood, wall panelling can be applied directly onto your wall and then you add your chosen paint colour on top. Panelling can already exist in a space or alternatively is an easy addition to enhance any room. If you are adding new panelling, make sure to research all the options depending on preference and also budget, as it can come in different styles and materials. 'Nicaragua' used on floor to ceiling panelling by Carlos Sanchez Garcia photography Paul Massey Panelling can definitely add grandeur to a room as well as making a space look bigger. This can be achieved by applying vertical panelling to make a room feel taller. Fitting wall panelling horizontally will make a room feel wider or longer. These are all great tricks for small rooms. It can also bring texture and add an architectural feature to an otherwise plain room. Take a look at our five wall panelling colour ideas to add character to your home. 1. Calm neutral paint colours for panelling Panelling adds a new layer of depth and detail to any space so painting it in a calm neutral colour creates a wonderfully sophisticated space. This detailed but soft backdrop then can allow you to add colour in other ways such as through furniture or other home decor. Using neutral paint colours on panelling in a kitchen or utility can be really effective as these spaces often get filled with different coloured objects and finishings. 'Flaxen Grey' utility room in a home by Border Oak 'Mummy' used in the panelling in the utility space in the home of Seb & Brogan Cox 'Mummy' used in the panelling in the utility space in the home of Seb & Brogan Cox When choosing more neutral or off-white paint colours for panelling, make sure to consider how the light sits in the room as the panelling will create a certain amount of shadow on the walls in the space. For example, Edward has just renovated his study where he added panelling and plaster work typical of the period of his home. With lots of natural light coming in from the north facing window, he chose to use ‘Milk White’ which is a well balanced warm white and serves as the perfect backdrop to his monochrome architectural drawings and prints. You can also create a wonderful calming bedroom scheme by using panelling to add soft textual planes. Paint with a subtle neutral shade like ‘Clay‘, ‘Paris Grey’, ‘Dove’ or ‘Lilac Pink’ 'Milk White' used in Edward's panelled study renovation 'Dove' used on the panelling in a wallpapered bedroom 2. Block colours for wall panelling Introducing panelling into a space means you can experiment with different colours on the different planes and surfaces, for example use different colours on the walls and panelling. For a totally immersive effect a have just one colour for the panels, skirting board and walls creating a WOW impact in any room. We have so many great natural paint colours for your panelling to create maximum effect. Floor to ceiling panelling is a great way to make a room feel taller and using one continuous colour will enhance this. Using a single colour creates a relaxing, inviting feel to a room and allows you to add additional colour and texture with furniture and artwork. Half height panelling can add depth to a room. Brighter colours that would work well as a block colour for panelling in a bathroom would be shades like ‘Naples Yellow’, ‘Nicaragua’ and ‘Etruscan Brown’. For all over panelling try a softer hue like ‘Lavender’, ‘Granite Green’ or ‘Quaker’. Floor to ceiling panelling in 'Lavender' Block panelling in 'Naples Yellow' in the home of @mamasparrowblog Floor to ceiling panelling in 'Granite Green' in an attic bathroom 'Etruscan Brown' on the panelling paired with 'Rose' on the walls in the home of our colour consultant @fionadelys 3. Dark paint colours for wall panels Dark-coloured panelling can make a real impact in your interior, creating a really sophisticated look. Berdoulat in Bath, designed and run by Patrick and Neri Williams, is full of our rich dark tones and they have used these shades on panelling through the space. They have created an impactful pantry space using ‘Tingry’ on all woodwork, making the narrow space feel larger. This finish complements the darker woods and contrasts nicely with the glass windows and jars. ‘London Brown’, a rich dark chocolate brown is another wonderful deep shade that looks impactful on panelling. If you don’t want full coverage with this strong shade then it pairs well with softer paint colours like ‘Fine White’ or ‘Fawn’. 'Tingry' pantry at the Berdoulat shop in Bath 'Tingry' pantry at the Berdoulat shop in Bath Bathroom panelling in 'London Brown' by @my_london_home 'London Brown' block panelling at Berdoulat shop Indigo Tingry London Brown 4. Statement coloured panelling Panelling can be really effective even on only a small part of a room, like in a bathroom or behind a bed. If you are thinking about using wallpaper it is also worth considering adding half height panelling to complement the pattern and colours. A small bathroom is a great place to add half height panelling. From a practical and aesthetic perspective the eggshell painted panelling will be more hardwearing around sink and bath areas as well as it being a great way to add texture. Try covering it with a fun, bright colour. Adding panelling to a bathroom is an excellent way to add warmth to a space with lots of harder and colder finishes or stones and tiles. Bright 'Invisible Green' panelling in a bathroom 'Aquatic' used on the panelling with 'Brick' on the bath @the1890shouse All over 'Pompadour' on the panelling in a chic living room at the home of @thatrebelhouse founder Our vibrant shades like ‘Invisible Green’, ‘Azurite’ or ‘Brick’ will create a statement space when painted on top of panelling in both large room and smaller spaces. When choosing these stronger colours it’s always important to think about complementary colours in the rest of the room, such as paintings and soft furnishing. 'Azurite' panelling 'Invisible Green' panelled study In a plain room that is lacking decorative details or any original architecture of its own, adding a panelled area is a clever way of bringing character to a featureless space. Classic board and batten panelling is given a contemporary twist when painted in strong colours from floor to ceiling. This creates an interesting backdrop for a modern statement piece of furniture in a standout colour or fabric. Panelling also frames artworks wonderfully and looks striking styled up with colourful lamps and decorative objects. We love @thatrebelhouse’s use of ‘Pompadour’ and ‘Nicaragua’ in a bold two tone effect painting on panelling in a modern and colourful living room space. 'Pompadour' and 'Nicaragua' living room by @thatrebelhouse 'Invisible Green' panelling paired with 'Rose' pink on the walls, photographed by Paul Whitbread Invisible Green Nicaragua Pompadour Azurite 5. Pastel panelling colours Pastel paint colours create a lovely soft finish so applying this over panelling can give some more depth to these subtler paint colours. Try our pastel pink ‘Cuisse de Nymphe Emue’, it’s perfect for bathroom panelling or against an off-white in a bedroom. We have a wonderful selection of blue and green pastel paint colours like ‘Pomona’ and ‘Duck Egg’ which work really well on a fully panelled room, serving as a wonderful backdrop to art especially when framed by the panels. 'Pomona' panelled living room at the home of Edward Bulmer 'Duck Egg' in a project featured in Edward's book 'The Colourful Past' 'Cuisse de Nymphe émue' panelled bathroom by colour consultant Emma Diaz @byemmadiaz 'Lilac Pink' on the walls and 'Ochre' on the panelling @dailydoseofjess Duck Egg Pomona Cuisse de Nymphe Emue Ochre Panelling is a useful and effective way of elevating your walls in any space. Still stuck on how to decorate your space or what colours to use? Do not stress! Our colour consultants are here to help you in a variety of forms from virtual consultations or in-home visits. Head over to our colour consultancy pages to find out more HERE or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also visit our London Showroom where are team are on hand to help with any colour queries.