When we talk about using color in our homes, our minds may picture bright rooms and accents, but being smart about color has nothing to do with shock factor. It’s more about making complementary colors work for you and using shades of color to drive the mood you want to create. Books of paint swatches will teach you nothing about this, but inspiration images certainly will! Here are 14 celebrities who’ve used color effectively in their homes and offices.

Brooke Shields
In her New York townhouse, which was decorated with the help of David Flint Wood, a British decorator and partner to India Hicks, actress Brooke Shields painted the walls in Benjamin Moore’s Chelsea Gray, which provides contrast for her heart-shaped Keith Haring painting. She added a touch of femininity with pink throw pillows and an attention-grabbing jolt with a bright green lampshade.
Minnie Mortimer
Fashion designer Minnie Mortimer had her priorities straight when she decorated her former Malibu, CA home, which was featured on Vogue.com. With big, wide, sun-filled windows looking out to lush trees, there’s no reason to detract from the view. So, she kept the walls white and furniture neutral, and integrated pops of color in pillows to lighten the mood.
Kourtney Kardashian
Reality star Kourtney Kardashian’s former Calabasas family home, which was featured on Domaine, had a lot going for it with geometric prints and sculptural lighting galore. In her office, she and her interior designer Jeff Andrews got down to business, keeping the color scheme simple with black walls and furniture. To brighten up the dark space, she used books, throw pillows, and a red hide chair.
Molly Sims
Model/actress Molly Sims’ Beverly Hills home, which was featured on Domaine, displays one of the greatest color techniques, which is looking to art for inspiration. The focal point of her LA living room, designed with Kishani Perera, is an acrylic painting with notes of yellow and turquoise. Sims and Perera created a neutral base with wooden furniture and brown upholstery, and then pulled in colors from the painting in accessories.
Tory Burch
The corporate offices of Tory Burch, as well as the fashion designer’s Southampton home, display truly effective use of color. In her weekend getaway, she mixes soft colors and neutrals to create a relaxing effect, and makes a sophisticated statement with silk coral curtains. In her office, she uses a trio of beautiful yet unique complementary colors — orange, green, and purple — to create a space that’s inspiring and stimulating.
Jennifer Lopez
Singer/actress and former In Living Color fly girl Jennifer Lopez knows how to put the guests in her cozy California residence at ease, and that’s with a soft, warm palette. She and interior designer Michelle Workman coated her guest bedroom in pastel peaches to create a space that looks downright heavenly.
Tata Harper
Beauty and skin care guru Tata Harper’s compound in Shoreham, VT, which was featured in Elle, is mostly devoid of color, with off-white walls and natural woods. But in one sitting room and children’s play room, she took a carefree approach with lobster-colored walls, to match her red tufted sofa, and a purposefully clashing purple and blue rug. It’s just the kind of laidback color choice a farmhouse needs.
Diane von Furstenberg
Wrap-dress pioneer Diane von Furstenberg is a strong, confident woman, and the interiors of all of her homesreflect that. In her live/work space in Manhattan’s Meatpacking District, the fashion designer painted her walls a rosy pink to match her vintage Salvador Dalí lip sofa. The result is fearless, feminine, and nothing but fabulous.
melanieacevedo_jennalyonsJenna Lyons
J.Crew president and creative director Jenna Lyons has color in her DNA; after all, she directs which shade of cashmere we’ll pick up, season after season. In her former Brooklyn townhouse, which was featured inDomino, the creative painted her walls a soft gray to draw attention to her home’s stunning architectural details. With most accents in black and white, she made one beautiful focal point with a statement-making lemon-yellow sofa.
Jessica Alba
Actress and entrepreneur Jessica Alba created a cool, calm atmosphere in the offices of her brand, The Honest Company, using fresh, timeless colors: Tiffany blue and dark teal. The space feels as happy as can be — just how a workplace should. In her husband Cash Warren’s man cave, designed by Kari Whitman, she spoke to its masculine identity with a moody deep blue wall color.
Cameron Diaz
Actress Cameron Diaz hired interior designer Kelly Wearstler to decorate her West Village, NY apartment,which was featured in ELLE Decor, and the pair selected a gorgeous emerald-green hue for her kitchen cabinets. It pairs perfectly with the kitchen’s copper backsplash, and it’s understated yet unique enough to make a statement.
Melanie Griffith
Actress Melanie Griffith and her decorator Kari Whitmanwere inspired by Griffith’s Banksy artwork to paint the paneling of her dining room high-gloss black. Black is certainly an unusual choice for a dining room, but the lacquer gives a bit of sparkle. And with a sultry, moody air, it feels like a place where dinner parties linger long into the evening.
Kelly Wearstler
Maximalist interior and accessories designer Kelly Wearstler doesn’t usually use bright colors, but she nailed it with this yellow and raspberry bedroom. The colors complement each other and are anchored by classic blacks and whites. The trick here is that she introduced texture rather than crazy patterns, which could have been too much.