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How to: Choose a Color Palette

Updated: Oct 19, 2022

Color is arguably the most important element of a design, it has the ability to affect how we feel and interact with the space that we are in. One of the things that I often speak to clients about is color, and rightfully so! It's a huge part of the space being created and oftentimes is the part of the design process that makes people nervous. Whether it be choosing the right wall color or just selecting the right accent color for space, this is the area where I find most people having the biggest commitment issue. I understand why typically once we choose a base color and begin working around it the rest of the elements fall into place so it is good to make sure that you love the color you choose to create a palette around. That's why in this post I have outlined the tips and tricks I use to choose the right color for spaces every day.

Before we start, it's important to understand that color has three attributes that make each color what they are:

  1. Hue – the identification of a certain type of color

  2. Value – how dark or light it is

  3. Intensity – it’s saturation

It's important to understand these attributes because it helps guide you to the right color match for you! Perhaps you love a rich dark blue, but in the space you are hoping to use it a color like that would make the space feel really small. Try looking for that same color with a lower intensity and there you go!

5 tips + tricks

  1. When I meet with a client, I always ask that they put together images of inspiration or just clippings of spaces they love. Usually, there will be a trend between the pictures, whether it's color, texture, lighting, it helps as a jumping-off point to create the rest of the space. So, I encourage you to find those images that make you happy and speak to you! Don't get caught up in whatever the latest trend is in the design world, see what speaks to you and try to dissect what are the consistencies you find yourself attracted to.

  2. Try a pattern! If you are having trouble settling on a color scheme you really love looking for a pattern that has multiple hues. If you find a combination of colors that you love to look at, chances are you'll love the way those colors look together recreated in your space.

  3. Make the colors in your space pop by grounding it with neutrals. Too much color can be overwhelming, and dependent on the feeling you are trying to evoke from the space too vibrant a palette is often too energizing. Whether it's a neutral palette with some dark punches, I always remind my clients to make sure to keep the hues in the space around 50/50 so that the space remains balanced.

  4. Make sure that when you introduce that pop of color in your space, that it is consistent throughout. What I mean is that ensure that you are choosing items that are as close to the same color as you can get. This will make space feel more crisp and intentional, an easy way to do this is by the addition of a rug, pillows, and light fixture!

  5. Remember that colors can be affected by what surrounds them. This is because the human eye tints a color with the complimentary of an adjacent color, this is especially important to consider when planning color juxtapositions. If planning to do this, make sure that you choose colors that are complementary to one another so that they don't clash. When in doubt over a color combination I always recommend pulling out a color wheel and checking to see that the colors you like will work in harmony.

Hopefully, these tips help guide you on your decision-making journey, if you still feel lost set up a free call with us and discuss the possibility of a color consultation where we can help you make informed design decisions.

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