Interior Design Colour Schemes for the Home
Around the home
Homes are usually divided into particular activity areas. One room, where one may spend much of one’s leisure time is the living room. This is a room that should be restful enough for relaxation yet stimulating enough for entertaining.
It is important when choosing colour schemes, particularly for a living area, to visualise the scheme under natural and artificial light. In fact, if you do a lot of entertaining, a colour scheme that looks its best in artificial light may be more successful.
Fluorescent light tends to bleach out colour, while ordinary tungsten lamps give a warmer glow to most colours. Unless there is the opportunity to start from scratch, most décor schemes have to be built around existing furniture and flooring. There are two ways of doing this. The first is to take one predominating colour and create a colour scheme, using shades and tones of that colour.
The second is to use one fixed colour and a contrast. In the first case, an example is a blue-green carpet, complemented by varying shades and tones of green, used on the walls and soft furnishings.
A white ceiling would contrast the greens. Alone, this could be a boring scheme and would need to be livened up with splashes of colour in cushions and lampshades.
In the second instance, one fixed colour and a contrast can be used in a two-colour scheme. A scheme can be built up, using complementary colours. With green, one can add soft yellows, shades of orange and brown. The original colour might be echoed or repeated in window furnishings or carpets.
A natural woodblock floor, or a wood-panelled wall, rich in colour, could provide the basis of a natural coloured, neutral-toned scheme. Here texture would play a big part in making a success of a scheme that is dependent on shades of oatmeal, black, grey and off-white. The whole scheme might need a focal point of more definite colour, perhaps in lampshades or cushion covers.
Aspect affects the choice of room colour schemes. A room facing north will have a cold aspect with cold light. Orange, yellow, red, the warm colours, help to counteract any cold feeling and create a feeling of warmth.
On the other hand a west- or south-facing room, which will have a warmer light, can be decorated in cool greens, blues and greys.
Colour scheming tends to be rather subjective, so really it is a choice for the individual. Bedrooms are a personal choice and range from the feminine colour schemes, pale and pastel, to the very masculine room.
Children’s rooms grow with them and while a pastel-shaded room is restful for a small baby, children enjoy the vibrant primary colours that adults may tend to find over-stimulating.
Teenagers tend to experiment with their own schemes, often achieving a discordant clash of colours.