Today many people realize the subtle power of color to transform human emotion. An interior color scheme can give a room a sense of well being or it can be oppressive. The colors in your home are an expression of the individuality of the people who live there and a matter of personal taste, but sometimes people feel anxious about choosing the paint color in their home for fear of making a costly error. In fact, color is the most economical way of transforming a room and there are some easy tips you can follow to avoid making a mistake.
Paint is the most versatile element of your interior design. It is available in thousands of colors, so the paint color for your room should be the thing you choose last, after your carpet, curtains and other fabrics have been finalized. Once you have chosen everything else, you can choose which of the myriad of paint colors available might be best suited to your other furnishings.
Color can change the apparent size and shape of spaces. Warm colors advance and decrease the apparent size of a room while cool colors recede and seem to increase the size. For example the most obvious solution when painting small rooms in a small house is to paint them white, because white, with its reflective qualities, will make a room seem bigger.
However, this can look harsh so many people choose warm shades of off white, ivory, and cream for the interior of their small homes. People often do this out of fear of making a mistake and it can be very boring. There is no need to be this safe even in a small home. Color can make your home come alive with beauty if you are willing to take some risks.
Color is very powerful. Psychologists believe it can influence our moods and how we feel about spending time in a particular room. Psychologists credit certain colors as having specific associations.
- Yellow is considered a bright, warm, and cheerful color.
- Blue is considered restful, soothing, and cool.
- Green is also considered soothing, reassuring, and natural.
- Black is sleek and elegant
- Deep Purple suggests grandeur and opulence, while lighter violet is feminine.
- White is stylish and, like gray and black, it amplifies the effects of other colors.
- Red and orange are exciting and will make a person feel uneasy if there is too much of them in a room.
These basic associations need to be taken with a grain of salt when choosing your interior color scheme. Much depends on the intensity of the color you choose. Dilute any of the strong colors and the effect will differ. A bright intense yellow might make us feel uncomfortable while soft buttermilk yellow makes us feel happy and peaceful at the same time.
There are also “cool” and “warm” tones of individual colors. Reds and pinks are considered “warm” colors and many reds and pinks have a warmer, peachy tone, however others have a cool, blue undertone. It is difficult to generalize about colors when so many different shades of each color are available, so you can use these basic associations as a guide or ignore them all together as you see fit.
The colors you can see are determined by the light that you have available. Select a range of different paint swatches and take them home to observe in your own interior space with the light sources you’ll be using in the room. Always do a test patch on your wall before purchasing paint. Try living with the test color on your wall for two or three days and see how you really feel about it.
Consider the proportions of different color that you wish to use carefully. One color should always dominate a color scheme. A scheme that always works well is to have two thirds of the room done in one color and the other third in another color. You should avoid using two colors of the same strength and intensity.
People often choose their color schemes from one of three different categories. Complementary color schemes are chosen from colors that are on the opposite sides of the color wheel such as red and green. Harmonious color schemes are based on similar colors close together on the color wheel like yellow and orange. Variations on one color, such as three different shades of green, are also popular.
You may want to choose very different colors for your bedroom than those you choose for your kitchen, but it is a good idea to connect all rooms by using a common color somewhere, even if it is only in your furnishings.
Be sure to get advice from the experts when choosing the interior color scheme for your house so you don’t make any mistakes. Your home is your canvas so have fun painting.