The Psychology of Color – How Colors Change the Look and Feel of a Room

Decorating

Colors are one of the most powerful design tools you can use to make a space get a specific feel for its purpose. They can change the shape and size of a room, the feel or appearance of a piece of furniture, and the way you interact with guests and family members. So how do you choose colors that create peace and harmony?

Kinds of Colors:

There are three main ways that colors act: active, passive, or neutral.

-Active colors are commonly associated with strength, excitement, confidence, enthusiasm, and exuberance. Great vibrant colors for a home gym, or kids play room.

-Passive colors are more toned-down, promoting calmness and mental focus. They are usually softer and lighter in value making them perfect for a space like an office or bathroom.

-Neutral colors blend naturally into whatever area they are in. They can be excited by adding an active color, or toned down by adding a passive color as an accent.

Picking Your Colors:

Not sure how you want your room to feel? Get ideas from a magazine, website or Instagram feed that you enjoy. Ask yourself why you like the way the room looks. Is it open and airy? Is it elegant and rich? What time of day are you commonly in the room or area that you plan on painting or decorating? What activities do you do or plan to do in the room? Are there any colors that give you happy memories or colors you just enjoy looking at? Do you have pieces of furniture that you love and would like to make a central theme in the room? You can take colors off of those pieces and incorporate them into your space!

Red

Red can really raise the energy level of a room. It’s intensity and excitement can draw people together and stimulate conversation in a room of gathering, like a dining or living room. In an entryway or hallway in can create a very strong first impression. Darker reds can be sophisticated and even romantic, bringing a room closer together and making for a more intimate experience.

Yellow

Yellows bring the sunshine into a space. Known for its happy effects, its great for kitchens, dining rooms, and bathrooms, providing an energizing lift. It’s a welcoming color that is great for hallways and small spaces. Although it’s undeniably cheery, it’s not always the best for main color schemes since it can create feeling of frustration and even anger in large amounts.

Blue

Blue brings down blood pressure and even slows respiration and heart rate! It’s calming, serene and great for spaces where you need to think or be inspired, like a craft room or an office. It’s softer shades encourage relaxation, great for a bedroom or bathroom. Its warmer blues (like turquoise, or periwinkle) are uplifting and playful. Dark blues make wonderful accents, but when it is used as a main color, it can sometimes be associated with sadness. 

Green

Green is claimed to be the most restful color for the eye, making it suitable for any room in the house. It can complimented by many colors, but especially blue and yellow for a beautiful balance. Green cools things down, and encourages unwinding while simultaneously exercising warmth and promoting comfort and togetherness. It is extremely calming  and stress-relieving when used as a main color. Representative of growth and renewal, it stimulates a natural feeling associated with nature. Gray-green, moss, olive, and other earthy green colors are we’ll suited for exteriors homes in natural settings, like a bungalow, while brighter shades like lime green add vitality to the exterior of a modern or art deco home.

Purple

Purple in dark values is rich, dramatic, luxurious and adds a creative depth to a room. Lighter shades of purple can give the same effect as light blue without feeling chilly. It can also be a very romantic color, good for a bedroom or bathroom.

Orange

Orange invokes excitement and enthusiasm. As one of the most energetic colors it isn’t the best for a living room or bedroom, but can supercharge a kids’ play room or an exercise room, as it heightens emotions.

Neutral Colors

Neutral colors are a design essential. Grey, black, white, and brown create all natural schemes that constantly fall in and out of fashion. Their flexibility makes them timeless, and they can help you to liven up or calm down your space by adding or subtracting color accents. White can help your home feel more spacious and open, and make the people in it feel very neutral. Primarily white spaces always feel clean and pure. White ceilings can give the illusion that the ceiling is higher and the room is bigger. Brown represents earth, security and contentment. It’s simple and comfortable warmth holds a welcoming feeling.

In conclusion, before you begin painting (or repainting) your home, ask your self how you want to feel in your space. Picking out a color for your walls doesn’t have to be stressful or overwhelming! With these guidelines to the way color plays with our mind, emotions, and interactions, you can select a perfect scheme for your home design. And if you need our help, we’re only a phone call away! Our experienced design team can help you take your home decor to the next level. 

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