Why do we find one place appealing and are uneasy in another? Why are we attracted to one product over another? Color—whether architectural or in products—accounts for 60 percent of our response to an object or a place.
Nothing is as personal as color. Choosing a color palette is both the most important part and yet the most daunting part for many when it comes to decorating their homes. Read on and get some great tips as we help guide you to create the color palette that best suits your style, personality and lifestyle.
- Monochromatic. You can choose to stay within the same shade and use a monochromatic approach such as select a variety of shades of blue for subtle color that tends to be soothing. This tends to look good in a bathroom or a bedroom if you want the feeling of calmness. Just choose your favorite color and overlap the shades. For example, select a darker color for the wall and then another in the same color scheme but different shade and slightly lighter for the trim. Your curtains, towels or bedding as well as accessories such as candles can be varying shades within the same scheme. You can also layer the colors by selecting a lighter green as the basecoat and then do a faux paint with a darker green overlay.
- Analogous. The analogous scheme uses colors that appear next to each other on the color wheel. For example yellow will be used with green or orange, or blue will be used with green or purple. This creates a colorful and often soothing palette.
- Contrast. If you want a room with pizzazz, choose vibrant colors and their respective shades such as oranges and gold, reds and dark purples. You can complement these colors by selecting a two next to each other such as gold and orange and one from the opposite side of the color wheel such as purple. You can also select black and red for a real stand out contrast and look that is reminiscent of an Oriental look. Choose two colors next to each other on the color wheel for a visual contrast as one will stand out from the other.
- Complementary. Lastly we have the complementary scheme where two opposing colors, such as blue and orange, are used together to create a dramatic, bold and high energy color scheme.
Think focal point when you are painting a room. You can quickly change the look of any room by adding contrasting colors to the walls and trim or by adding a darker color to one particular wall. You can make a large room look smaller by painting one wall a darker shade. You can also visually expand a room by painting the walls a darker color and the trim a lighter shade within the same color scheme, especially if you have a room with detailed trim on the walls. This easy change will make the room pop out more visually and add definite appeal. If you have a room with molding halfway between the ceiling and floor, use two different shades of the same color for a wonderful visual contrast. Highlight any interesting aspect in your rooms with a darker, complementary shade to the one you have chosen for your walls. Visible stairways, especially those in the middle of the room look incredible when painted a darker shade than the walls and gives you a wonderful focal point.
The “buzz” about color is usually called “color psychology.” But the effects of color are subtle and significant; physical and psychological. Color use is not something that results in a definitive equation between “color and our moods,” as is a currently popular expression. Wherever we go we respond to color, but the importance of color is often underestimated. Color use is important to us personally in our homes and in the places where we work.
You do not have to spend a lot of money on an interior designer to redo the look of your house. With a little paint and a lot of imagination, you can easily change the look and feel of a room. Look for highlights of your rooms and think of ways to make them stand out. Think of how you want to feel when you are inside that room. Do you want to feel romantic and calm? Choose a light warm or cool shade. Or do you want to feel homey and comforted? Select buttery yellows such as for your kitchen. Do you want a feel of calmness and balance? Select shades of green that are light or moss or sage colored. Do you want to feel energized and express your vibrant personality? Choose vibrant shades. Do you want an air of elegance and serenity to a room? Select neutral shades or cool light greens. The point is, you can quickly feel the way you want with a can of paint or two, a paint brush and a little imagination.