Choosing An Interior Color Scheme

Planning a color scheme helps you attain color harmony in the décor of your home. One of the best tools for creating a color scheme is the color wheel. Not only does the color wheel lay out a multitude of colors for you to choose from, it helps you to determine the complimentary color to the major color focus of a room. Even if you decide to go with a monochromatic color scheme on your interior walls, you may want to choose furnishings and accents in a complimentary color. Here are some ideas you may want to consider when choosing paint colors for your home:

Color Schemes

*Monochromatic Color Scheme—in the monochromatic color scheme, one color is used throughout the room. Monotony is avoided through the use of various shades, tones, and tints of the key color. Textures also help to flesh out the look and make it come alive.

*Complimentary Color Scheme—in the complimentary color scheme, two colors on opposite sides of the color wheel are used along with the various tones and shades of the two colors. One example of a complimentary color scheme would be yellow and violet and the various tones thereof.

*Analogous Color Schemes—in the analogous color scheme, three colors that are situated one next to the other on the color wheel are used for color, but shades of all three colors are chosen from the same family so that all warm shades are used or all cool shades, only.

Three Colors

*Triadic Color Schemes—consist of three colors placed one after the other, or equidistant, one from the other. For instance, one may choose three unrelated primary colors such as red, yellow, and blue. In this type of color scheme, various tones and shades can be used from each of the three colors.

One easy way for a novice to choose color schemes is to use a well-loved pattern as a guide when choosing paint colors. You can use the lightest color in the pattern for background color, such as the walls. Then choose the color that falls into the medium range for large pieces of furniture, doors, cabinets, closets, and windows. The darkest color in the pattern can be reserved for accents and accessories.

It's important to bear in mind that your color choices affect the perception of the spaces in which they are used. Light colors and white reflect more light making rooms appear larger than they are, while dark colors can make a room appear smaller. You may want to paint a very large room in a darker color to lend a cozy atmosphere and reserve light colors for smaller rooms to help open them up a bit.