When it comes to decorating the home, color is something that many of us take under deep consideration. Sometimes inspiration can hit you like a wave, and other times it just doesn’t come as easily. Perhaps the reason for so much hesitation is the ripple effect that it can have throughout a room, and the home in general.
The color of your walls, furniture, carpeting, and more all have an impact on the overall look of a room. So many choices and possibilities can seem awfully overwhelming. While palette choices can be almost limitless, before you can dive into building a color scheme, it’s helpful to know a bit about color theory and moods. That’s exactly what I’m here to talk about today!
Did you know that there are several different variations of the color wheel? Color wheels can be very simple, containing only principal colors, or detailed, adding complementary colors. For the purposes of interior decorating, wheels including complementary colors are invaluable.
When choosing colors for your decor, it’s important to be familiar with color mood. Consider the purpose of the room you’re planning to decorate. Is it a shared room used during the day? A room used for entertaining? A bedroom or bathroom? Active spaces in your home work best with warm or intense color, while rooms that you rest in are more suitable for neutral or cool colors. Use your color wheel to determine which colors are considered “warm” (red to yellow-green), and which are “cool” (green to red-violet).
If you’re decorating a large room that you plan to leave minimally furnished, a warm hue would be an ideal selection.
Conversely, cool colors are idea for a room that you want to expand. Of course, the room itself won’t change, but the way the eye perceives it will. This is a great trick to improve the look of a small bedroom or bathroom.
Using warm and cool colors are just one technique to keep in mind when selecting color. In addition to affecting perception, hues can also affect emotion and in turn have different connotations, both positive and negative, associated with them. Here are some examples:
Red: love, passion, festiveness, violence, and danger.
Orange: warmth, fruitfulness, cheerfulness, brashness, and danger.
Yellow: happiness, hope, vitality, caution, and sickness.
(Interestingly, studies have shown that long periods of time spent in a yellow room can cause feelings of frustration in it’s inhabitants. It’s even theorized that a yellow nursery may cause babies to cry more frequently, so proceed with caution.)
Green: growth, renewal, nature, youth, calmness, wealth, nausea, and sourness.
Blue: royalty, coolness, tranquility, dependability, nautical, sadness, and winter.
Purple/Violet/Indigo: richness, mystery, bravery, conceit, and mourning.
Brown: earth and nature, comfort, boredom, and depression.
White: purity, cleanliness, innocence, death, and misfortune.
As you can see, each color has at least one negative undertone. While, they may be helpful in eliminating possible color choices, it’s best to focus on the positive examples. Using these along with the use and desired mood of your room, you can start to form a color scheme to bring out the very best in your space.
This was written by Domestic Design expert, Adrienne Breedlove. Be sure to visit her on her blog, ScribblyDoodles.com