Color effects mood, evokes emotion, and has psychological effects on us, whether we are aware of them or not. You may hear designers or paint specialists talk about warm colors and cool colors, how there are undertones of other colors within grays and browns depending on which gray or brown you choose.
Let’s take a walk along the rainbow shall we?
Red, orange yellow – all “warm” colors associated with fire. Said to evoke energy, activity, passion – and depending on your color story – can be good or bad forms of each of these.
Red can raise the pulse and instigate anger and it can also be dramatic, and associated with action and ambition.
Pink attracts, nurtures, is associated with love and our feminine side.
Yellow equates to happiness and joy.
Orange evokes optimism and energy.
Green, blue, purple – Cool colors, exuding calm and peace, often used in offices, hospitals and bedrooms.
Go a little deeper – want to evoke confidence? Use a deep and bold blue. Looking for a calm space? Use a lighter blue.
Green is associated with wood and nature, positivity and growth. it is said to open the mind. Green can also be linked to money.
Purple – is often said to be a cool color, my experience tells me it can go both ways. Purple is the color of royalty and wealth as it suggests luxury and regal charm.
Neutrals / Browns “earth tones” – provided structure, support and stability. Comfort and relaxation, cozy companionship, and is a timeless canvas. Often we start with a neutral sofa, window treatment or bed linen and then add color from there. Neutrals make a good base.
Gray, another neutral, is a color that influences one’s sense of security, and can also evoke calm and composure. These are associated with metal.
Black promises sophistication, a go to when you don’t know what else to do – it goes with everything – if you want to create drama – use black heavily. Black doesn’t date, it is timeless and effortlessly chic!
Take note: sometimes, reactions to color are personal.
While meeting with a client a conversation about color comes up – and this one throws me a bit – because he dismisses a beige tile we are looking at and says “I don’t want to commit to a color”. It literally stopped me in my tracks, I had to look up to see if he was serious (he was). Beige.
Upon further discussion – his ex-wife and his mother surrounded him in beige for his entire life and he wanted nothing to do with it. Also, he already had an image of a black and white kitchen in his mind – so suggesting a beige was just NOT happening.
It’s all good. A black and white kitchen - classic, clean, modern and timeless. Other clients shy away from black and white as too boring, but it fits this guy to a T.
One of the best parts of being an interior designer is discovering a client’s reactions through conversation. There can be vast differences of opinion within couples too – often it’s a matter of finding common ground, sometimes it’s suggesting that each gets their “own” room to decorate, sometimes one really doesn’t care at all! (As a true lover of color – this breaks my heart a little).
Either way, creating a space that’s just right for the folks that live in it really fires me up. Have a challenge? I’d love to hear it!
Please reach out.