Customers often ask me what my favorite color is. Thankfully there is no wrong or right answer to that question. I personally do not have a favorite color. There are a lot of variables that go into answering that question. It depends on the mood I am in, which room the color will be in, the lighting in the room, the color of the static objects in the room, etc.
Color psychology says different colors affect our moods differently. Colors also have different meanings in different cultures.
Red: The most emotionally intense color, stimulates faster heartbeat and breathing. The color of love. Warm color which stimulates appetite (McDonalds, Burger King)
Blue: Peaceful, tranquil, opposite of Red. Blue causes the body to produce calming chemicals. People are more productive in blue rooms. Often used in bedrooms. Symbolizes loyalty. Cold color
Green: Symbolizes nature, calming and refreshing. People waiting to appear on TV sit in the “Green Room.” Hospitals often use green to relax patients. Green is the easiest color on the eye and can improve vision. Signifies wealth (color of money).
Yellow: Cheerful sunny yellow is an attention getter. While it is considered an optimistic color, people lose their tempers more in a yellow room and babies cry more. It is the most difficult color for the eye so it can be over-powering it over used. Yellow enhances concentration, hence its use for legal pads. Also speeds metabolism.
Purple: Color of loyalty and luxury, wealth and sophistication. Rarely found in nature.
Brown: Solid and reliable. Color of earth and abundant in nature.
The definition of color: The quality of an object or substance with respect to light reflected by the object usually determined visually by measurement of hue, saturation and brightness of the reflected light.
Choosing a color can be more complicated than the definition itself. Hopefully this will help to simplify the process. Color should be harmonious within the home. It should be pleasing to the eye. The problem, or challenge, is that everyone has a different opinion about this. I tell all my customers who ask for help choosing colors, “This is my opinion, you have to look at your walls all day.” Color choices should engage the viewer and create an inner sense of order and balance. When colors are not harmonious they are either very boring or very chaotic. This will either put you to sleep or make you feel like leaving (which might be helpful, depending on who you are entertaining….). There has to be a good “mother-in-law” joke in there somewhere….
There are basically four color schemes to help you make your choice:
1. Monochromatic: Color schemes that use tints and shades of the same color. The effect of a monochromatic scheme can be subtle when using a soft color, or, dramatic and daring when using a bold or rich hue.
2. Complementry: Color schemes that include 2 colors that oppose eachother on the color wheel. “Opposites attract,” so its no surprise that complementry colors are pleasing to the eye. Complementry colors enhance each others temperature and interest and energy to the decor.
3. Analogous: Color schemes that use consecutive colors on the color wheel, one color being used more prominently than the other two. This method creates a soothing and tonal richness within the living space
4. Triad: Color schemes that include any 3 colors equally spaced on the color wheel used in various proportions. This creates a harmonious colorful living area that is sophisticated.
A standard color wheel includes 12 colors and is divided into 3 designations:
1. Primary colors: Red, Blue and Yellow
2. Secondary colors: the combination of 2 primary colors: Orange (red & yellow), Green (blue & yellow), Violet (blue & red)
3. Tertiary colors: the combination of primary and secondary colors. Tertiary colors are identified by the names of the colors used: blue-green, yellow-green, blue-violet, red-violet, red-orange, yellow-orange
Temperature of color: We can percieve colors as warm or cool and relative to the particular color and its surrounding colors. Generally, Reds, Yellows, and Oranges are warm while Blues, Greens and Voilets are cool. Warm colors tend to condense a room, cool colors expand a room.