Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Principles of Color

Color Scheme- Yolo Colourhouse- Portland, OR.
Color- one of the most critical factors to interior design, and one of the most transformative. Color in the form of wall paint is hands-down the least expensive way to transform a space, but takes careful consideration and analysis.

Here we've put together some principles to consider when looking at color for interior spaces.

Color theory teaches us about the relationship of colors to one another in terms of hierarchy, tonal value, warm vs cool, and color harmony and mood.
For instance, green and blue are calming colors and will give the user of a space a feeling of relaxation. Red and oranges, being fire colors, will provide a feeling of activity and increased motion. Brighter yellows are a hue that can induce feelings of anxiety and alertness, and bounces light considerably. 

The sheen levels will greatly effect color, and can help to ‘correct’ certain architectural details you’d like to highlight or diminish.

Matte or eggshell sheens can help to lessen the textural look of ‘popcorn’ textured walls and ceilings. Higher sheens (semi-gloss and gloss) will more closely bond to any surface and bounce light considerably, actually showing off any texture or imperfections on the surface even more, and making the color appear brighter. 

Color has a powerful way of making a space feel more expansive or intimate.
To make a space feel larger, look to lighter and brighter options, with a high LRV contentand stay away from the temptation to paint a ceiling the same color as the walls, especially when using more saturated tones on the walls. 
 For a feeling of greater intimacy, consider rich and saturated tones. Rich tones can still have a vibrancy to them, as long as the sheen and LRV are considered.  

Of course there are a multitude of other considerations when looking at color, but our hope is that you can pull some inspiration from the 'theory' above for your space.

Cheers, Carey