When decorating a house for the first time, the most common worry people have is whether or not their chosen colours will work together. Colour can affect the perceived shape and size of a room, and also the mood of those in it. Light colours make a room seem large and airy, whereas darker shades create a warm, intimate atmosphere. Whether you are painting, wallpapering or tiling a wall, below is a brief guide to how different colours work within the home.
Neutrals (black, white, grey and brown)
Neutral colours act as a base point for most decorators. Many people use all-neutral schemes, accentuated with flashes of colour to keep the room interesting. Black should be used sparingly to accent as it is too overpowering for full walls.
Red is commonly used to stir up excitement in a room. It is thought to stimulate conversation and draw people together, with the living room thought to be the best place for a covering of red. It is too stimulating for the bedroom however, as red is seen to raise heart rate and speed-up respiration, neither of which are conducive to a good night’s sleep.
Whereas red raises blood pressure and speeds up respiration and heart rates, blue has the opposite effect. Its calming and relaxing qualities make it a perfect choice for bedrooms, although too much pastel blue can be too cold and unwelcoming. This can be combatted by pairing lighter shades with warmer-hued furnishings. Avoidance of darker blues is recommended, as they can make a space seem close and claustrophobic.
Often associated with sophistication and luxury in its darker hues, purple is greatly underused in many homes. Lighter shades such as lavender and lilac create a similar calming feel to blue, but without the cold connotations.
Of all the colours available, green is believed to be the most restful. Unsurprisingly, it combines blues refreshing nature with the vibrancy of yellow, and is great for living rooms as it encourages both warmth and calm in equal measures.
Due to its connotations with sunshine and summer, yellow is used in the home to lift rooms and promote happiness and cheeriness throughout. However, studies have shown it should not be the primary colour of the space. Babies are believed to cry more in predominantly yellow rooms, whilst feeling of frustration and anger can be stirred up in older people too by its overuse.
For similar reasons to yellow, orange is seen as an enthusiastic and energetic colour. It is probably too lively for use in relaxing zones, but exercise rooms or gyms could be boosted by the extra burst of energy