This Top Interior Designer Shares Her Favorite Timeless Color Combos

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If you've never painted your own home before, you might be fooled into thinking picking colors is easy. Spoiler alert: It's not. Luckily, there are numerous resources out there for you, the newest of which is paint company PPG's color guide by interior designer and HGTV star Leanne Ford.

Ford stars in Restored by the Fords with her brother Steve Ford, a contractor. She got her start by renovating a 1907 schoolhouse in her hometown of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The project was featured in Country Living, and she's since worked for clients across the country, with numerous interiors gracing the pages of design magazines.

Ford is well known for her "white-on-white" aesthetic, but for her collaboration with PPG, she's conjured up five different color combinations featuring 15 hues in total (five of which are white variants) that are inspired by her penchant for timeless style.

"I really wanted to focus on practical [colors] that would work in any space," Ford says. "I laid the groundwork by starting with several whites, my go-to, and then I chose colors that could all live beautifully together and layered to bring a room to life."

Get inspired to give your walls a fresh look by checking out her five palettes for PPG below, which are available now at The Home Depot stores across the U.S.

A New Neutral

green, gray, white paint swatches
credit: PPG

If you're aiming for a neutral look, don't just play it safe with beige. This palette redefines the idea of neutral by pairing a rich green with a warm white and a simple greige.

"The combinations help to give everyone a starting point — to identify which set of colors catches attention first — but really any combination of these 15 shades would look gorgeous together," Ford says.

Clean & Inviting

white, pink, gray paint swatches
credit: PPG

For a comfortable, homey feel, try this palette, which features another warm white, a pale pink, and an earthy dark gray.

When you've narrowed your paint selection down to your favorites, Ford suggests bringing the swatches right into your home before making the plunge. "I love choosing colors the old-school way — getting a palette, pulling it apart and putting the color cards right on the wall to better envision them in the space," she says.

Refined Casual

white, green, brown paint swatches
credit: PPG

With a touch of boho flair, the Refined Casual palette uses earth tones that exude a sense of modernism: a woodsy green and a soft brown are anchored by a warm white.

City Cottage

white and two gray paint swatches
credit: PPG

With a cool white and two earthy grays, this palette is designed to highlight natural materials in a space, like wood beams or a stone fireplace.

Soft & Subtle

white, salmon, blue-gray paint swatches
credit: PPG

If you're looking to add some color that isn't too bold, go with this palette, featuring a subtle salmon hue, a timeless white, and a black with blue undertones.


Stefanie Waldek

Stefanie Waldek

Stefanie is a New York–based writer and editor. She has served on the editorial staffs of Architectural Digest, ARTnews, and Oyster.com, a TripAdvisor company, before setting out on her own as a freelancer. Her beats include architecture, design, art, travel, science, and history, and her words have appeared in Architectural Digest, Condé Nast Traveler, Popular Science, Mental Floss, Galerie, Jetsetter, and History.com, among others. In another life, she'd be a real estate broker since she loves searching for apartments and homes.