How to plan a colour scheme

29 January 2021

Choosing the right paint colours for your home can feel overwhelming, especially if you're not confident with colour, so we've put together our top tips for helping you to find your inspiration.

Inspiration for your colour scheme can come from many sources, maybe a favourite painting or art piece, some fabric or a piece of furniture. Because our reaction to colour is mostly instinctive, we will naturally choose colours that we feel comfortable with, whether these are the clothes we wear or the furnishings in our home.

We like to describe planning a colour scheme as like mixing ingredients for a recipe, too much or too little of one ingredient can upset the whole dish. Too much of one colour may have the opposite effect to your intentions and may end up feeling overpowering, especially with very bright shades.

Step One

A good place to start for finding inspiration is to have a good look at what you already have around you - your favourite clothes, your furniture, fabrics and art. Sometimes we can't describe what we like but just know it when we see it. 

When we want to plan a colour scheme, it can help to create an 'inspiration board' filled with your favourite things, including pictures and fabric swatches. Inspiration boards are a great source to help you develop your colour scheme and focus on the colours that you really love and enjoy being around.

Step 2 

Once you've created your inspiration board, you may see some recurring themes such as favourite colours, favourite fabrics and favourite furniture styles. By analysing your inspiration board, you can reveal lots of information about your colour preferences and use these to guide you towards a colour palette.

Take a look at the recurring colours and cut out similar coloured paint chips from paint cards and place them on your inspiration board, including lighter and darker versions of each shade, for example, a range of blues like Albie, Luna and Anders. You may naturally find that your clustered colours co-ordinate well together, helping to form your overall colour scheme.

Step 3

When planning your colour scheme, there are a few things to consider such as what the lighting is like in the room you're decorating and what the room is going to be used for. 

It's important to consider the appearance of your chosen colour, as paint colours can change depending on what lighting is available. You'll also need to think about how you want the room to feel, as colour affects how we think and feel, learn more about the power of colour here. You may want to steer away from painting bedrooms in bright reds like Magnus as bedrooms are a place for relaxing but Magnus is energetic and exilerating. This isn't how we want to feel in bed after a hard day at work!

Step 4

It's generally best to work with no more than 3 colours when decorating a room as too many colours can make a scheme look confused. 

We recommend starting with one main colour, maybe a lighter colour in the larger areas and use deeper, more intense shades on smaller areas such as furniture, wall art or furnishings, for example, greens like Sienna, Sophie and Joseph make a harmonising colour scheme. It's best to use a combination of light, mid and dark shades to create visual interest.

We always recommend to sample paint colours on walls so you're able to see how it appears at different times of the day. 

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