Guest Author - Donna Coogan
Colors affect mood. Thatís why people buy things in colors that they like. For example, most people choose clothes based on their color preferences. We also look at color when we purchase a car. Why? Because our clothes and our cars are things we are exposed to every day and we want to feel good when we are in them. Thatís true for the rooms in our home, too. We want to decorate with colors that we like in order to enjoy our surroundings.
Most people know right away how they respond to color. For instance, while one person finds orange stimulating, another might find it repulsive. Itís an instinctive reaction. Yet, they still struggle with choosing their decorating colors.
Choosing color for your home isnít too complicated if you begin with knowing what mood you want to create in each room. Then select from the colors that create that mood and choose the ones you like.
Colors generally fall into 3 categories: warm, cool and neutral.
Warm colors are those that warm up a space and cool colors are those that cool down a space. Thatís easy enough to remember. The warm colors include red, yellow and orange and the cool colors are blue, green and purple.
Warm colors tend to be energetic, attention grabbing and bold. Cool colors tend to be soothing, calming and peaceful. Thatís why you often find warm colors like sunny yellows in an active room like the kitchen and cool colors like tranquil blues in the bedrooms and bathrooms.
Neutral colors include whites, creams, grays, blacks and browns. They tend to fade away into the background and help warm and cool colors stand out more. But, more than that, neutral colors help give our eyes a place to rest. If a room was full of nothing but color, color, color our eyes would go crazy trying to take everything in. Essentially, using neutrals provides our brains a break from all the ďnoise.Ē In doing so, our senses can really appreciate the other colors in the room because the neutrals have done their job by providing much needed harmony, balance and relief to a space.
Thereís also nothing wrong with an all neutral color scheme. In fact this can create a very calm and reassuring feel in your home. Neutral colors that are found in nature like those of the earthy soil, tree trunks, rocky cliffs, sandy beaches and snow can give your home a look of serene beauty and genuineness. Itís best to use a mix of neutrals to create an enduring look that is rarely dull or uninteresting. Such a color scheme can create a feeling of relaxation making a room eternally comfortable.
Once you've chosen the mood you want to create for a room and picked the colors to support that, it's easy to put it all together. Looking at your colors, choose one for the main color, one or two for the secondary color and one or two for the accent color. Finally, be sure to include at least one neutral and youíll have a nicely balanced color scheme that creates the mood you want.