Building Interior Design Plans With Color

 Building Interior Design Plans With Color

Color is a strong design element that dramatically affects the way we perceive an interior space. The color theory provides us with rules for mixing color and concepts about the visual impact of color on our moods and emotions. Use this basic guide to color theory to create powerful and dynamic color schemes within your interiors.

The color wheel is based on several hierarchies of colors, starting with the primary colors of Red, Yellow, and Blue. The secondary colors are created by mixing each of these to form Orange, Green, and Violet. This forms the familiar ROYGBIV spectrum of a rainbow. When we take the mixing process one step further, tertiary colors are created in between each of these, such as Red-Orange, Yellow-Orange, Yellow-Green, and so on.

This wheel is divided into warm and cold color categories. Warm colors range from Red to Yellow, including browns, and are associated with the colors of fire, autumn leaves, and sunset. These colors are often stimulating, happy, and energetic. Cool colors range from Yellow-Green to Red-Violet, including greys, and are associated with water, nature and trees, and overcast days. These colors are calming, relaxing, and mellow.

New house/old color? New house/no color? Old house/old color? Still, living with builder-basic white? Maybe your paint colors are simply not to your liking! The benefit of a simple color plan, whether assisted by a decorator or done on your own, cannot be underestimated. It’s amazing what bringing the color story together can do to achieve a professional, cohesive look. Paint is an affordable and DIY-friendly option that can give you instant, happy, motivating results!

Color Punch

Show off your style and throw in a bit of fun with a color statement! We think of bold, playful, or strong colors as reserved for kids’ rooms, but the truth is we can use these same colors to bring strength and personality into any room of the home. Want a red kitchen to offset your white cabinets? Go for it. (designer note: Make sure your red has a compatible saturation with other strong tones in your color scheme.) Want to use yellow in a north-facing room to give it a sunnier disposition? No problem. The trick to blending two or three bold colors is to use a sprinkling of an adjacent room’s color in each space. Example: Red kitchen, next to the yellow living room. Bring 3-5 touches of red into the living room and 3-5 touches of yellow into the kitchen. This need not be painted: using a pillow, curtains or another accessory item will help marry the spaces.

Transitioning Color

One of the most often asked questions and concerns I hear from homeowners is how to transition color theory between rooms or spaces and still let each room have its personality. The solution? Select a perfect neutral shade to flow between the spaces.

To pick your neutral, make sure it blends beautifully with the finishes currently in your home. The carpeting, hardwoods, countertops, and cabinetry are not as easy or affordable of an update as paint. Paint is cheap, so even if you’re replacing the flooring down the road, match what you’ve got NOW for a truly finished and cohesive aesthetic in your home. Use your selected neutral paint color to meander its way throughout your home. Hallways, open spaces, entry halls; wherever you don’t use an accent color, your neutral will bring all the spaces together and banish that builder-basic forever. Select a neutral that blends well with your accent colors.

Color Weave

One technique that I like is to weave a particular color seamlessly throughout your home. This does not mean that every room is the same color scheme. This technique is great in open floor plans and smaller homes but will work pretty much anywhere.

Example: Let’s say a pale, spa blue is one of your favorite colors. Your master bedroom might sport your favorite hue on all the walls. Your neutral blends beautifully with this color. A similar blue color shows up in the accessories in the living area, it’s again touched lightly in the art hanging in the hallway and perhaps used as an accent in a powder room. Finally, using a shade of this same blue as a feature wall in yet another room will carry the theme. The trick is to vary the shade of the color from soft to strong. Weaving a color through the home is never overt, but rather it’s a subtle, elegant way to make your home flow. Remember, paint is an affordable and easy decorating option, but not the only way to interject color into your décor. Happy Decorating!


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