Decorating with color

Interior design experts agree: color is the most effective way to inexpensively personalize and revitalize your home's interior.

When you want to make a big change with little investment:

  • paint walls - usually the largest surface area of a home - for a big impact
  • cover large pieces of furniture with inexpensive throws 
  • put down a rug in your room's accent color
  • paint the ceiling a bright, unexpected color
The colourful home : confident and creative colour schemes for every room
Vinny Lee.
London : Jacqui Small, c2010.

A creative use of color can completely transform a home and bring warmth, light, and welcome focus to even the smallest of spaces. Perfect for do-it-yourself decorators, this informative guide explains the principles of color theory and details classic color combinations for homes. A range of inspirational color schemes are also addressed in detail—among them all-white neutrals to jewel-bright shades of turquoise—and hints on ways to introduce color via wall, floors, fabrics, and furnishings#xA0;are provided. Practical and chock-full of innovative ideas, this is the ultimate resource for adding life and style to any room.

Jonathan Adler on happy chic colors.
New York : Sterling Innovation, c2010.
Inspiring readers' need to be fearless in their decorating choices, Adler guides readers through color-drenched rooms, from True Blue and Going Rouge to Champagne Sparkle.
Home color bible : 1,000 gorgeous combinations for every room
David Willis.
New York : Collins Design, c2010.
Create a beautiful homeWhen it comes to planning and decorating your home, even experienced designers sometimes get it wrong. Now, you can choose the color scheme you want and be sure of a perfect result. This accessible and easy-to-use guide puts thousands of color combinations at your fingertips. It features: Hundreds of color combinations, organized by room and then by color, with harmonious, contrasting, and accent shades Reference photographs of bedrooms, bathrooms, living rooms, and kitchens that show the effect each color scheme has on the room The full Benjamin Moore color range, complete with reference numbers for easy identification, sourcing, and buying

It's true that people have emotional responses to color. Red is an action color that may stimulate some and make others irritable. While small doses of primary blue are homey and comforting, large swaths may seem overly formal. Green is a universal color of rejuvenation but the shade makes a difference. Yellow-greens are stimulating while blue-greens are calming.

How do we choose colors that will be pleasing in our homes? Experts recommend  choosing colors to match the activities of rooms. If you respond to warm  energizing colors use them in active areas such as entryways and playrooms. Enliven any neutral rooms with red or yellow accent colors.

"All that anyone needs to become a good decorator is a sense of beauty, a sense of fun, and some common sense."

Dorothy Draper

If you like soothing cool colors use them in bedrooms and living rooms, places for relaxation and rest. Add neutrals and to work effectively with these colors in areas that connect.

How do we combine colors so that harmony reigns throughout? Start with a favorite color and add a harmonizing neutral and an accent color. That basic color scheme will work on any number of areas in a home.

More about color in interior decoration.

Article by: St. Louis Public Library staff