How to add colour to your home
PUBLISHED: 13:02 13 June 2016 | UPDATED: 13:02 13 June 2016
Colour, colour everywhere: but which one to choose? Carol Burns investigates the science of colour
As a fine artist working mostly in oils there are colours that keep coming back to you – or that you keep coming back to – and within interiors it’s mostly the same. There are those who love white – a very under-rated colour that tends to be seen as a non-colour much to our detriment. Then there are the primary colours of red, blue and yellow – rarely used in interiors in their own pigmented glory – instead we favour tones: light coastal blues in kitchen and conservatory; spring minty greens in bathrooms and pinks and purples in the bedroom.
Colours have a big impact on our mood – scientifically speaking, red makes you hungry – this is why we see it in so many fast food signs – and dining rooms. Of course, it can also have other effects on other appetites, which is why it’s also popular in the bedroom.
But make 2016 the year you step away from safety and habit – and rediscover what colour can really do for your interiors. Get your hands on Goethes’ colour wheel if you really want to start from scratch and do away with your magnolia mindlessness.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe approached colour in true Teutonic fashion in 1810 when he presented his wheel mapping out colour in his book Theory of Colour. In brief the book presents a catalogue of how colour is perceived in a wide variety of circumstances – but move swiftly onto his colour wheel and rediscover colours you never knew you loved. Here you can discover his colour psychology which associated red with ‘beauty’, orange with noble, yellow with good, green was useful while blue was common (and violet, he declared, was unnecessary – sorry to lovers of purple). But if you are less interested in what your wall colour says about your soul (or your occupation, for that matter) perhaps more usefully he mapped complementary colours which allowed us to ensure we avoid colour gaffe.