Colour can create, but also destroy, the ambience of your home and the visual style of your interior. We have put together a list of what-not-do-do tips so you can learn how to avoid the biggest colour mistakes in interior design.
1. Ignoring the feel and purpose of the room
There is a difference between colours you might like, and the effect they might have on the space you are creating. It's similar to a difference between colours you like and the ones you feel good wearing. However much you love bright primary hues, it's probably better not to use them in your bedroom (this doesn't mean you can't choose more muted versions of your favourites with a few stronger accents). If your home tends to be on a cold side, and you like to be cosy, a blue and grey living room might not be the best choice.
There is more to this mistake than just creating a wrong kind of ambience. A combination of light and colour will affect how well the room performs its function. Warm light and pink tones are flattering to human skin, and might be better for your vanity, bedroom or even bathroom than cooler daylight type light and whites or cool neutrals.
2. Mixing too many colours
We are not saying that minimalism, monochrome, and carefully matching everything to everything else are the only solutions. But even the most exuberant, maximalist interior should not be chaotic and overwhelming. If in doubt, especially in spaces designed for relaxation or rest, reduce the number of colours. Sometimes it's less the question of the number of colours and more of a correct balance. Aim for one-two dominant colours in the interior and use others as accents.
3. Too much matching
If colour chaos can lead to undesirable results, so can keeping everything in a narrow tonal range: all-beige, all-pink or all-blue. This, especially if covering the whole flat or house, can feel flat, boring and soulless. Do you need to redecorate to fix this? Not at all. Introducing accents that don't fit with your palette is a quick and easy way to avoid making a too-much-of-a-matchness impression.
4. Ignoring the light effects
Colour and light are inseparably connected. The same colour, or a whole colour scheme can look entirely different, and feel entirely different too, in different lighting conditions: on a sunny day or on a dull and overcast one; with dimmed lights and a few candles or with all the lights illuminating the room fully. This is particularly important for wall colour, so do test patches in different light and see if your chosen hue works in all of them.
5. Picking to strong a hue
For bold wall colours (and also other large areas of colour like long curtains or wall to wall carpets and large rugs), what looks good on a swatch or a sample will almost certainly look too strong and even overwhelming when covering the whole area it's intended to cover. And in lower artificial light the colour will shift, often unpredictably. So test and try before you commit to anything large-scale.
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