Colour psychology is a fascinating topic. It is a well-known fact that colours have the ability to impact our emotions, may be even alter our moods. Colours can even have an effect on our creativity and intuition. When faced with multiple choices of the same product in different colours, how does your brain work to pick one? Does you favourite colour have an influence in your choice or do you go for a colour that best fits in terms of functionality? The answer lies in a simple fact that colour accounts for 60% of our response to an object! That’s huge!
Home colours are of paramount importance. Seeing them everyday and living around them can subtly influence your life. Before we go on to describe these, let’s get some quick basics.
Hue is the colour – the basic colour like red or blue. The value of the hue describes how dark or light the colour is. Saturation is how prominent the hue is in the shade you choose (for example, it decreases as you go from a darker to lighter shade). Intensity describes how brilliant the colour is.
Strong, intense colours like red depict active and vibrant spots. As a contrast, pastels depict a calm and cool atmosphere. A light colour on all walls in a room can increase its brightness. Similarly, using two light hues of the same colour in a room can create a dark and light effect. So the colour you choose for your walls cannot be done in isolation – you’ll have to see what effect the mix of hues in different saturation and intensity can do for you and how they flow with your room colours. Of course, don’t forget the objects in the room and how the colours connect the dots in various rooms as will need to join the flow to create your story. Here is a list of best colours for homes
The colour of the open ocean, the colour of the endless sky, a vast expanse of blue has a calming effect on our mind. Blue is used in rooms where you may receive a lot of sun in order to give a “cooling” effect. It’s is associated with royalty in some cultures and a traditionally chosen colour for boys’ rooms.
If you want a relaxing and serene environment, choose lighter shades of blue like periwinkle and play it up as your main colour. It is said to bring down heart rate, blood pressure and slow down the respiration rate too.
Combining the relaxing quality of blue and the cheerful quality of yellow, green is the colour that we equate with nature and freshness. This is one colour that can be used in any room of the house. It may bring a fresh, cooling effect to the kitchen, a warm effect to the living room and “feel good” factor in the bedroom (as green is also associated with fertility).
The catch with using green is that it has so many distinct hue values that it can be difficult what room colours to choose. The clever way to do it is to choose a variety of greens in close shades for different objects in the room.
The colour of romance. The colour of blood. Red is a highly stimulating colour that is said to increase heart rate and blood pressure. It stirs up activity and excitement, stimulates conversation and can be used to create a strong impression.
Stop signs and danger signals are painted red for a reason. So you need to move with a little caution when choosing this colour for your room. Choose a muted, earthy tone of red for your walls which make a bold statement without screaming for attention. Such reds work well especially at nightfall with lighting colour effects.
This bold and beautiful color combination is from the house of Pinturas Kar, painters based in Leganes, Spain.
The colour of joy and happiness. The colour of sunshine. Yellow is rarely chosen as the main colour as it presents an “in your face” design that cannot easily be worked on. Strangely, prolonged exposure to this colour is also said to fester a grumpy temperament.
Some studies showed that babies tend to cry a lot in yellow rooms. When choosing yellow, choose the hue for walls that isn’t very overpowering. Connect the dots with yellow flowers, paintings ad floor cushions and avoid painting a whole wall in stimulating yellow.
Purple has always been associated with royalty. It adds a rich drama to your interiors and can be used to depict creativity in your home. It takes a warm, passionate hue from red and a cool relaxed hue from blue to juxtapose the colour effects against each other.
If you have more red in your purple hue, it can dominate the room (which is why rich purple probably stood for royalty and power). If you have more of blue, it can add to the calming effect. The ‘stylish’ purple is called ‘mauve’ and works well in décor choices.
The colour of earth, trees and sand. This stylish neutral seems to fall in and out of fashion frequently. Wooden floorings and panels never go out of style while the typical brown couch seems to be a big no these days.
Brown creates grounding, stabilizing effect on the mind. Well finished wooden cabinets, floors and furniture can showcase sophistication. A deeper, darker brown can add depth where the eyes can rest. Earthy browns are one of the best colours for homes.
Colour psychology also suggests that colours change their ‘personality’ in different lights. Natural daylight shows the colour in its true form. Fluorescent lighting accents the blue tone and incandescent lighting increases its warmth. Before you finalize your home colours, start with a small space to test your palette. Try different finishes (smooth or rough) to bring out the best in the shades. While your walls can show a rough pattern finish, the moldings can have a smoother look.
Kiff Holland said that “Colour creates, enhances, changes, reveals and establishes the mood”. Be bold and have fun with them. You can always repaint and change the look n a few years.
For some more tricks and tips read: Bedroom colour ideas