Colour shouldn’t be scary
Whilst working as a designer it has been surprising to me to find the most common hurdle my clients run into when building or renovating is how to introduce colour into a space. After talking to many people about why this is I have discovered that when they think colour they tend to think along the lines of bold, permanent solutions. They are afraid to make a wrong decision about something they believe they will have live with for the next 10+ years and which may date a room. The reason this was somewhat surprising is that for me the very opposite is true as colour can be one of the easiest things to introduce, remove and update, which is what makes it so useful and fun! If you are someone who isn’t sure how to create a scheme with colour hopefully reading this post will give you the confidence to give it a go and discover how easy it can be.
There are many ways to introduce colour but I believe using accent colours is the easiest way to start. Accent colours are used for emphasis in a scheme and are often bright or bold; however they do not have to be. When starting to create your scheme it is a good idea to begin with your preferred neutral colours on the items that you can’t easily change like flooring, cabinetry and large items of furniture. Once this has been decided you can start playing with which colours to introduce.
Above: A great example of how some yellow cushions, lamps and flowers lift this mostly grey scheme.
To make choosing the colour/s easy you can start with your favourite colour and experiment with different shades of it. Accent colours are used to create interest but don’t necessarily have to be bold so just use the shades you prefer. Generally the bolder the colour the less of it will need to be used. Once the colour you will use has been decided you can start looking for accessories to use it on. You may use your accent colour on one feature piece or scatter it around the room on many pieces. Items which are great for accent colours include vases, art, rugs, throws, cushions, towels, lamps, paint, tiles and any other accessory or easy to change items. Below are some examples to demonstrate the impact that using even a small amount of colour can have on a space.
Imagine how different the rooms below would look without the accent colours and how easy they are to change.
If you do not have a colour preference or simply can’t decide on a colour I also have a solution. You may be familiar with Pantone, if not they are a company recognized world wide as the leading source of colour information. Each year they select a colour trend of the year which explodes into all areas of design globally. This year’s colour is a gorgeous pinky purple titled Radiant Orchid. So if you want some colour in your home but can’t decide on one why not use this years pantone colour as your trend guide and have some fun! For more information and inspiration you can visit their website www.pantone.com.