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Psychology of Color

Color trends come and go...and come again. Pantone chooses an annual “Color of the Year” that epitomizes the dominant trending color for interior design, clothing and accessories Whatever needs a splash of new color. This year they chose Rose Quartz with a green shade called Serenity for an accent.

Color affects your mood and when you’re considering a renovation for your domicile it is important to imagine how you want the room to “feel”. There’s a science behind color and color evokes emotional reactions. Granted, color doesn’t affect everyone in the same way but there are basic rules about how we perceive color.

You know about the color theory: the color wheel, primary colors; tints and shades, and warm and cool colors. But how do they affect people when integrated into interior design? Scarlet brings a very different feeling than pink—but they’re both on the “red” section of the color wheel. Coral is going t0 look completely different as an accent color than tangerine, yet both are within the range of orange.

And just take a look at the variations of white when you’re looking at paint colors…there are dozens and dozens (and dozens). And each shade of white will add a different feel to your overall interior space.

So what are the emotions that are triggered by colors? Red is passionate and sexy. Blue is comforting and tranquil. (yet illuminated blue light will keep you awake). Yellow is uplifting and increases energy. Orange makes you hungry (!) and promotes youthfulness. Green is serene and balanced.

Yes, red is bolder than a soft pink when you’re waking or going to sleep. Rose accents versus cherry colored walls are two color schemes that evoke vastly different feelings. Do colors affect your mood? Most definitely. Something to keep in mind when pinning your dream house on Pinterest.

Neon colors will be jarring, evoking high energy and best used a room in small doses. Unless your home has it’s own Zumba studio.

pastels will be calming. Metallic, black, marbled colors—they will all take on the “personality” of the surrounding colors. White might seem to be a blank canvas, but a white color with a buttercup tint will bring a totally different feeling when paired with a navy and white couch.

Wood tones, fixture colors, sunlight, adjoining rooms—they all can affect the perception of a room. And how it will make you feel. And of course there’s your personal taste. When you’re looking for a bay area interior design firm, Studio J Architecture can guide you. Does an all-pastel room appeal to you even if might be a little drab without some brighter accents? All white can look sterile, even though it definitely looks cool, calm and modern.

Yellow and purple can mix well together— giving a room both energy and strength if they are in the same warm/cool hues.

“Colors” don’t have to “match"

especially, when considering interior design.

Dark tones such as brown, forest green, and currant can give a room a cozy and rustic feel, but going overboard can make the room seem like a cave. Bright whites, true greys, pure blues and sunny yellow can give a cheery and bright flavor, but may seem out of place in a more rustic-feeling ranch house. Exchange the blues and yellow for black and an accent color and your room has a whole new vibe.

Oversized prints? Stripes and polka dots? Plaids and florals? A color scheme that includes those elements probably should be left for an interior design professionals but these kind of combinations evoke a vibrant and playful energy and can ‘make a statement’ without seeming to be a disaster. But not everyone can live with such a chaotic kind of combination.

A neutral room with accent colors can appeal to almost anyone. An interior designer can help give you inspiration so your space feels like “you” and suggest combinations in unique ways—ones you might never have thought possible. Break the rules? Of course you can.

Contact Studio J Architecture at 888-221-8051

100 Pine Street, Studio 1250 San Francisco, CA 94111

305 San Anselmo Avenue, Studio 219 San Anselmo, CA 94960

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