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HOW TO CHOOSE A COLOR PALETTE FOR YOUR HOME
April 20, 2017
Choosing the color palette for your home can trip up many a homeowner. How do you make a room look effortlessly beautiful? How do you choose colors you'll love? How do you know if the colors you love will work well together? Use these expert design tips for choosing a color palette in your home.
Think of Your Whole Home
Remember to think about the palette for your whole home, not just for one room. A simple way to keep the palette consistent throughout your home is to keep your palette to five colors:
A white -- Use the same white for moldings, doors, walls, ceilings, etc.
A neutral -- Tan, gray, blue... this is a simple color that you'll use for hallways, sofa walls, and anywhere you need a neutral.
Your chosen color -- Pick a color you absolutely love.
A coordinating color that goes with your chosen color.
One more coordinating color.
This is an excellent guideline for beginning. You can always add more color as time goes on, but this is a safe way to create a base you'll love. It also helps your home flow from room to room, creating a nice sense of peace and balance.
Look to the largest colorful pattern in your room. Is it a piece of art? A furniture piece? A rug? Take the colors you really love from that item to use throughout your room. Look closely at the whites and beiges in the pattern for inspiration for a neutral wall color.
Look outside, and notice the color values and where they are. Dark grass is at the ground, medium-valued trees and plants are mid-level, and the sky is lighter. If you do this in your decorating as well, the room will naturally look put together. Choose dark colors for the floor, medium-value colors for the walls, and light colors on the ceiling.
Think of the Color Wheel
Get your hands on a color wheel, and use it to check your color choices. Use it to create one of these four color schemes:
Monochromatic -- Use different tones of the same color in your decorating. For example, you can use a sky blue with a dark midnight blue and a medium-toned blue.
Analogous -- For a soothing look, use colors that are next to each other on the color wheel. Blue can work well with green or purple. Yellow can be used with orange or green.
Contrast -- For a more dramatic look, use a triad of contrasting colors, like orange-yellow, red-purple, and blue-green.
Complementary -- For high energy, look across the color wheel. Pair purple with green, or blue with orange.
Think of Your Clothes
Yes, seriously. Your wardrobe will give you some excellent cues on the colors you naturally appreciate. Do you feel best in neutral colors, bright colors, or muted colors? Surround yourself with these colors -- as accents or as focal points -- and you'll feel at ease.
Think About Balance
Remember this ratio: 60-30-10. With this ratio, you'll never question how much of a color you should use. 60% of your room should be a dominant color (this will be your walls), 30% should be a secondary color (this is your upholstery), and 10% is an accent color (this is the color of your accessories).
Bold hues work well when they are balanced with white or off-white. Similarly, you can use one harmonizing shade with your accents to balance the bold hues.
Think of Who You Are
Sometimes, rules are made to broken. The above suggestions will help any space come together, but that doesn't mean you have to follow them religiously. Put your personality into your space. That honesty will be genuine, and will reflect as a well-designed room you love.