Colors, like features, follow the changes of the emotions. – Pablo Picasso
Color has always been a favorite subject of mine. Whether I’m blending shades of primary colors for an entire home or apartment or adding a punch color to accentuate a focal point, I’m always keeping in mind the affect my color choices have on the psyche of the client.
Of course, at the initial client intake meeting, color is established as part of the ‘feel’ of the room. Color plays a very important role in insuring you evoke the emotion your targeting. For instance, when talking about your kitchen, words like bright, airy, and light-filled come to mind. Conversely, a bedroom description may sound something like cozy, private, or intimate.
Colors Do Evoke Specific Emotions
Just the sound of those specific adjectives automatically bring to mind a specific color. When I think of cozy, private or intimate, I get a feeling of deep purple, yummy brown or a deep slate gray.
Thinking bright, airy and light-filled? How about a lemony yellow or wonderful cornflower blue? Each us perceives color as a personal emotional experience, but the experts have their opinions.
Six Colors..Many Emotions
There are an infinite amount of colors and shades in the rainbow; however, these basic colors are the foundation for your subliminal feelings in your home.
Red is a powerful color. Associated with strength, passion, and energy. It is a wonderful accent or punch color. Think of calls to action such as ‘click here’ or ‘buy now’. Red is also known to encourage appetite. It is a great choice for a formal dining room. Color offshoots of red are pinks, light reds, browns, and reddish browns.
Blue is the color of the sky and the sea which we, as humans, always find awe-inspiring. There is nothing more superb than a bright blue sky or the Caribbean sea. Blue evokes a feeling of trust and stability. Ideal for home office spaces. Ironically, blue is the color most preferred by men so perhaps that’s why we start them off with blue bedrooms.
The color of money, health, tranquility and nature, green is terrific for spaces used for resting or respite. It is a soothing comforting color. Shades of green make some feel safe and secure. Perfect for your bedroom, a guest room or one for someone who may be convalescing.
Energy! Lots and lots of energy. No wonder bright yellows are not always recommended for a babys’ rooms. Softer yellows ie., buttercup or creamy yellows – are ideal. The right shade of yellow can also create a warmth in your kitchen or bath. My personal preference for bright yellows is to use them as accent or punch colors. Yellow is associated with intellect, energy and happiness.
Power, mystery, formality and unfortunately, connotations of fear and darkness. However, because black is a very deep, in my opinion, it has and conjures deep positive reflective energy. The experts agree black provides perspective and depth. That’s why wearing black will help to make one look thinner.
White has always been associated with purity, goodness, and cleanliness. Often used in hospitals and other charitable organizations. White is wonderful for baths and smaller spaces where you’d like to feel as if you have ‘more room.’
A few of my projects over the years have taken on some tremendous color gambles. For instance, my learnings at Pratt Institute taught me years ago that the colors of the home need to flow and compliment and never use bolds to individualize spaces. Never say never! Some times that gambles pay off – big. An explosion of color, if used to naturally bring the spaces together with accent pieces that work together, may be all you need to pull it off.
Color is very personal. Because of the emotional response, it is paramount to your project whether you are creating it personally or engaging a professional to be on point with what makes you feel right in your space. If you have a specific color in mind for one of your rooms, the wrong shade of that color will throw you off if it isn’t right. Don’t be afraid to continuously tweak the shade until you feel that ‘ahhhh’.