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How to Create a Colour Scheme for Your Home

Know your favourite colours but having trouble combining them?

Assess your space

Different colours suit different rooms, so the first step is to assess the space. If your room faces north and often feels cool, shades containing warmer tones, such as pink, gold or yellow, will help it feel more welcoming. If your room faces south, you can get away with most colours – even dark, dramatic ones.

Think about what you use the room for

Is it for eating, working or sleeping? Use colour to create the mood you want to achieve. Cool, calm, muted shades, such as pale green and watery blue, evoke calm, while deep, vibrant colours, such as reds and purples, will energise and stimulate.

Take inspiration from all around you

Nature is a wonderful source of effortless colour combinations. Take a walk on the wild side in the great outdoors. Which landscapes make you feel most alive? Why not pick out some colours you haven’t considered – you might be surprised.

Take note of your most treasured possesions

Do you have a cushion or bedspread that instantly adds pizzazz to any space? Pick out colours from a favourite patterned accessory, and then include the item in your finished room for a coordinated, personal look.

Art can also inspire stunning colour schemes. Select a few key colours from a painting you love for a scheme that’s guaranteed to get the creative juices flowing.

Value the opinion of friends and family?

Before you take the plunge, send them a selection of photos of your ‘painted’ room– or share them on social media – and see what they think.

Mood board magic

Once you’ve chosen your colours, collect paint swatches and fabric and wallpaper samples that feature different shades of your chosen hues. Use a flat space or large piece of white cardboard as a backdrop for your emerging scheme. Arrange and rearrange to your heart’s content. Take your time. Don’t forget to stand back and walk away. You’ll know when it’s right.

Try before you buy

Once you’ve narrowed down the possibilities, you need to see more of the colours to get an idea of how they will work. Most major paint retailers have in-store colour libraries with A4 sheets of painted colour – called drawdowns or colour swatches – in thousands of colours. These help you to get an idea of how the colour will look on a bigger scale.


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