Photo: Eric Piasecki

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3. Play Building Blocks
Having certain colors flow from one room to the next can make the whole house feel more pulled-together, but that doesn't mean you need the exact same shade repeated in various degrees. Redd describes choosing colors for your home like layering building blocks: Start with the color you love the most and choose which room would best fit that color—say, a bold peacock blue to energize an entrance hall where you greet people—and think of other shades that could carry a hint of that color from one room to the next. "A paler shade is almost like a shadow of that bolder color," he explains.

The other building blocks don't have to be limited to paint either. In fact, a room can be more interesting if you use other shades of the color in different textures, like wallpaper, cork or fabric-lined walls, he says.