Rich, vibrant, and bold, jewel tones are sumptuous colors that add a dose of drama to any room. They’re called jewel tones because they're derived from the hues of precious gemstones like rubies, emeralds, sapphires, amethyst, and more. When used in a curated color palette, they impart luxury to any space. These saturated tones are for those who gravitate towards deeper, moodier colors, and who don’t mind taking a risk when it comes to accessories, paint, and furniture. In short, a jewel-toned color palette is the complete opposite of neutral or subdued. These color combos are all about living out loud.
What is a Jewel Tone?
A jewel tone is a color that resembles those of gemstones. Think: rubies, sapphires, amethyst, or citrine.
Not sure where to start on crafting the jewel-toned space of your dreams? We tapped interior designers for their favorite color palettes that incorporate these gemstone-inspired colors. From bright yellows and purples to saturated blues and greens, these artful pairings look elevated in any room of your house.
Emerald Green and Yellow
Though they fall next to one another on the color wheel, green and yellow look stunning together. Especially when used in jewel tones, mustard or traditional yellow brings radiance and brightness, while emerald green adds sophistication and depth.
"I love using jewel tones in jewel box spaces, like mudrooms or small home offices," says Malka Helft of Think Chic Interiors. "These smaller spaces can handle the depth and richness of a jewel tone since it's in limited quantity—and it makes a bold design statement. My personal favorite is emerald green paired with natural wood and a pop of yellow."
Sapphire, Turquoise, and Gray
Sapphire and turquoise create a rich, ocean-like palette when paired together. Here, a few strategically-placed accessories like velvet pillows, wall art, and a graphic rug pull in the vivid blue hues. Consider keeping the rest of your decor more neutral, but still on the cooler side, to really let them shine. According to Amy Studebaker, owner and principal designer at Amy Studebaker Design, a few jewel-toned accessories can really pull together a palette like this.
"When incorporating jewel tones like this into your home, you don’t need to necessarily paint the entire room," she says. "Adding a fun pop of a jewel tone to a neutral space can still make a huge impact."
Navy and Amethyst
Don't be afraid of royal purple or amethyst. Purple and navy create an opulent color palette that feels refined yet inviting. According to Alessandra Wood, vice president of style at Modsy, "Purple is a great base color for your jewel tones, including sapphire or navy." For deep purple shades, Wood also suggests pairing them with golden yellows to create "a very dramatic and regal look."
Jade and Citrine
Cozy and charming, yet decidedly upscale, mossy green jade and pale yellow-orange citrine create an almost autumnal palette inspired by beautiful gemstones. "This is a very rich-colored scheme, so it is important to use it in rooms with high ceilings and large canvases," says interior designer and owner of The Knobs Company, David Mason. It's a more dramatic play on classic earth tones, the darker green creates depth while the orange-yellow adds warmth to the space. Start by incorporating citrine into an emerald palette through soft goods like pillows and a rug.
Peacock Blue and Emerald Green
"I find that rich tones, like this peacock blue, in a smaller living room can do wonders in terms of making the room feel like a little jewel box," says designer Mark Manardo of Perlmutter & Freiwald. His biggest advice when selecting a jewel tone color palette is to not be afraid of going with a bolder color. According to him, it adds instant character and interest and will help anchor the rest of the room.
"Painting the full room this color can work in spaces that are more compact in size. Otherwise, for a larger space, I would consider either an accent wall or partial room paint, depending on the architecture and structure of the room. It can really work wonders in terms of setting the space apart from the rest of the home and bringing a design vision to life.”
Jade, Magenta, and Cerulean Blue
"Currently, my favorite jewel-tone color scheme is jade, magenta, and cerulean blue,” says certified interior designer Marco Bizzley of House Grail. When incorporating it into a room, his advice is that you want to go bold. Add some throw pillows, paintings, a lively rug, or paint an accent wall to get each color in there—you'll be surprised at how well they work together. As seen in this room, this is a palette that has tons of contrast and visual interest if you really go for it.
Garnet and Sapphire
For a moody yet romantic feel, try out a deep ruby red or garnet paired with sapphire, like Lauren Harmon of JL Design in Nashville did in this beautiful dining area. According to her, "These jewel tones really shine in a moody dining room. Using a multicolored Ishak rug is a great way to incorporate multiple tones into your room. This rug was the perfect addition to tie the sapphire walls, garnet host chairs, and topaz vase."
Mustard and Navy
Another color scheme Studebaker is a fan of is rich mustard and dynamic navy. As complementary colors, she loves "how this jewel-tone color scheme adds such a richness and depth to a space." If you're not sure where to start, Studebaker suggests making a statement with a jewel-toned sofa and using it as your focal point. From there, you can select a paint color and accessories.
"Repeating a jewel tone throughout your space can also help to create a cozy vibe for your home," Studebaker says. "For example, you could use a rich and beautiful navy wall color and accent the room with pops of the navy in the rug, accessories, and pillows. "
Periwinkle, Teal, and Seafoam Green
“We love the Pantone Color of the Year for 2022, "Very Peri" (a cool bluish-purple) ideally paired with teal and seafoam green," says designer Nina Grauer of Dekay & Tate. She loves using a jewel tone in an unexpected way, like on the ceiling. "It immediately draws the attention up and makes the room feel expansive but still intimate and cozy. Paired with other jewel tones and more muted jewel shades, the overall feeling is one of richness and softness at the same time, perfect for a bedroom or bathroom," she says.