One of the most effective elements in interior design is color. It is one of the first things a viewer notices when entering a room and different colors evoke different emotions in each space. While it is the simplest way to recognize a design, it is also a more complicated process than people think. A room’s function, dimensions, furnishings and lighting all must be examined to pull a color scheme together. Once you learn the basics of how color influences design, it will help you combine theory with solutions that will reflect your personality and style.
Using a color wheel will better help you understand how certain combinations work well together. Complementary colors are colors that are opposite one another on the color wheel. These colors accentuate one another for a bolder statement. Examples of complementary colors are red and green, violet and yellow, orange and blue. These combinations will automatically draw the eye and add energy to a room.
Be sure to maintain balance in your palette to prevent the space from becoming too overwhelming. Analogous colors are any three colors to the left or right of the one that you are concentrated on. Their similarity gives them a natural look when used together and is pleasing to the eye when implemented in a design. An example of an analogous set of colors is blue, blue-green, green, yellow-green.
A good way to spread the color throughout a space is to choose one to be the dominate color and use the remaining three for support. With analogous color schemes, it is a good idea to incorporate some neutral pieces as well to prevent the space from having too many similar colors taking over the room. A monochromatic color scheme is also another way to keep a room’s palette simple. This method uses a single hue and expands on that same color through lightening and darkening with white, gray and black to create tints, shades and tones. To prevent the same color from becoming too plain, use texture and patterns to liven the space up.