We Pinpointed the Swatches Behind Our Favorite Painted Closets
Including three fresh shades for your IKEA Pax system.
Published Jul 3, 2021 12:59 AM
We spend more time standing in front of our closets—picking out our OOTD only to inevitably change our mind—than we think. So it only makes sense that the doors of said closet, be it a reach-in or a walk-in, are worth staring at. That’s where paint comes in.
Not unlike picking a swatch for your kitchen cabinets or bathroom vanity, the one you choose for your closet should reflect your style. Soothing neutrals lend a more traditional feel, while a hit of pink or superdark blue reads as modern. Ahead, we’ve pinpointed the exact colors behind eight of our favorite spaces.
When designer couple Chris and Julia Marcum were quoted $30,000 for a custom closet build, they decided to hack the IKEA Pax system and paint everything, down to the baseboards they added to the frames, in this light gray. According to the company, it’s “surprisingly strong when used in smaller rooms but softens in larger, well-lit spaces.”
This is a “not too sweet” pink, as Matilda Goad, who had her custom closet doors designed by Blockhouse, puts it. In other words, you can freely pair the lilac shade with superfun details like a rolling oak ladder, antique brass railing, and acrylic door handles without it appearing kiddie.
A sprightly shade of dusty clover brings the outdoors in and nails that casual beachy-cool look without skewing nautical. Take a page out of Zippora Seven and Terence Connors’s Montauk home and treat it as an outline to spotlight larger-than-life cane paneling.
Jordan Ferney masked her IKEA Pax wardrobe with a soft biscuit shade that adds a layer of warmth to her sun-drenched bedroom in a way that factory white can’t. To top it off, she bought an $80 10-pack of brass-tinged handles from Amazon.
A light hint of gray prevents this shade from looking overly sugary, giving it a fresh finish. Balance out the punchy pink with a heavy dose of glass fronts à la designer Lori Paranjape to help bounce light around.
Washington, D.C.–based designer and DIYer Malcolm Simmons painted every last door in his home this black satin finish. “I just love the consistency that they establish throughout my little house,” he says—especially when all the doors also feature vintage hardware.
What color is more soothing when you’re winding down and putting on pj’s than a deep, deep navy. Sarah Tramp’s word of advice: Paint your baseboards and trim before you install any wallpaper.
This green-blue in the company’s modern eggshell finish was one of the key upgrades that made this hacked IKEA closet look completely bespoke. “Depending on the time of day, it can change from a peacock blue to a dark sage green,” says homeowner and DIYer Erin Kestenbaum. Open sesame.
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