How To Create The Right Colour Scheme For Your Home

January 30, 2014
How To Create The Right Colour Scheme For Your Home

mood board image

Whether you've just moved into a brand new house, are renovating a pre-loved space or simply wanting to spruce up your current home, the colour scheme is by far one the most important aspects to consider.

Where do I start?

We often know the sort of colours we are already drawn to and have a general idea of the sort of space we want to create – natural and rustic, sleek and modern, romantic and feminine – but when it comes to putting these colours and ideas into an interior it can be quite hard to know where to begin! The first thing to do is to assess your space and determine the factors in the room that will have an effect on your colour that you can’t change.

Unless you've got the budget to put in new carpet or re-stain the floor boards, your flooring will play a big part in the colour scheme you can work with. We may not realise it, but our floors are a HUGE surface in our home and their colour has a BIG impact on the rest of the space. Carpet flooring is usually easy to determine its colour but if they’re timber, you may have to figure out what tone of timber they are – are they a particularly warm red or orange? Have they got a white wash effect? Do they have a dark under tone? Or maybe they have various grains which create multiple colours? All of these variations will have a different impact on the colour scheme you decide on.

Fixed items like joinery in the kitchen or bathroom is expensive and sometimes quite tricky to replace so if you’re trying to revamp either of these rooms, make sure your new colour scheme works well with the existing cabinetry. It’s easier (and cheaper) to pick a different paint colour then it is to re-laminate the kitchen! The same applies for stone bench tops and architectural features. Stone normally has varying colours throughout and its solid mass has a heavy appearance so the other colours in the room need to soften this and complement its tone.

Creating the colour scheme

Now that you've done the hard stuff, the fun part comes in! Start collecting images of things that make you happy and reflect the sort of home you want to live in. A mood board is a fantastic way to determine the colour path you’ll go down as soon enough you’ll begin to notice a theme in all of your images. Maybe your mood board is filled with pictures of the beach – cool waters, warm sunsets, colourful cocktails and white sands. The days of yellow and blue interiors may, thankfully, be long gone, but a coastal look of crisp whites with accents of blue and sand tones to your home is often quite refreshing and relaxing. Or maybe your happy place is far from the beach and all your images reflect a sleek, modern interior of sharp grey's and bursts of bright colour. Whatever it is, your mood board will help you decide which direction to go in.

warehouse bllue cream charcoal bed light paint
wallpaper chair light moody interior
If you’re having some trouble determining your colour scheme, refer to a colour wheel to see what colours work well together. The two colours which sit opposite on the colour wheel to one and other will always complement each other or you can use a mix of three colours that are next to each other to create an analogous colour scheme. Just remember to balance everything with neutrals so it doesn't look like a rainbow threw up in your living room!

Now that you have a colour theme organised, starting trying out different colours in your home. Paint large pieces of paper in the colours you’re thinking of using and stick them up on the walls to see where they work in your space. It’s good to check them out at different times of the day as different natural light will have a different impact on the colour. Also, the larger the paint test the better - small paint swabs don’t give you an accurate idea of what that colour will look like on mass. Lots of people decide to paint their homes in neutrals like white or cream as they feel it is a blank canvas to then introduce a colour scheme with your furniture. This can work really well but try not to be afraid to inject some colour into your walls and have some fun with your colour scheme. You could try a bold wall paper or an interesting feature wall, remember it’s easy to paint over a wall if you don’t like it this time next year.

Once you've got your walls painted, the furnishing begins. Everything from furniture to home wares to curtains and rugs can be introduced to work with your colour scheme. You probably have some much loved furniture that you may not want to get rid of just because its colour doesn't suit but don’t stress, couches can be re-upholstered and furniture can be re-painted!

neon interior design colour chair table sofa
green interior light wallpaper

With colour trends changing season by season and fashion having a strong influence on what’s trendy in the home, it’s hard not to get swept up in the fad of the month! The main thing to remember when creating a new colour scheme in your home is that it has to work for you and your family. Be adventurous and creative but don’t forget you have to live in this space every day and the colour scheme plays a big part in dictating the mood of the home.

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