Color psychology in interior design: Choosing the right palette for your space

06 May

Blue accents in Ayming Benelux’s office in Machelen

Ayming's previous office building was going to be demolished, so they had to relocate. They found a promising space on the outskirts of Brussels, but it was vast and empty. Visitors would also have to walk through a long, narrow and dark corridor to enter the space, which didn't feel welcoming.

The new area held promise, but workspace designers needed to work their magic.
The objective was to enhance the user experience, make the most of the available space, and design a setting that would inspire confidence and represent Ayming's brand. They made the decision to construct two distinct areas as a team: a calm area for concentration and rest, and an energetic area for mingling and socializing

Since first impressions count, they designed an unexpected light installation that made a lasting impression, transforming the dim hallway.
They included various tones of blue into their design to represent Ayming's identity, drawing inspiration from their brand colors.

The Chromatic Realm

The field of color psychology studies how the human mind interprets and responds to various hues. Colors have been connected to a range of emotions, personality types, and even health effects from antiquity to the present day.

The science of color psychology examines how various colors can elicit feelings, affect how people make decisions, and even have an effect on one's health. These effects are used in interior design to produce stimulating, calming, or inspiring environments. Color theory was founded on the discoveries of naturalists and philosophers who lived hundreds of years ago. Through the scientific findings of Aristotle and the psychological considerations of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, the inventors of their respective eras have made significant contributions to our understanding of the color spectrum.

Interior designers employ the intriguing idea of color psychology to set particular moods and ambiances in their spaces. Designers are able to select colors that will encourage rest, creativity, productivity, or anything else the client wants by knowing how different hues impact us emotionally.

Here's a rundown of how color psychology works in interior design:

1ST Emotions are evoked by colors: Certain emotions have been connected to particular hues. For instance, blue is recognized for its calming and relaxing qualities, while red is connected to passion and vigor.

2nd Shades matter: A color's particular shade can have a significant impact. While a strong mustard yellow can appear more mature and grounded, a pastel yellow can feel cheery and breezy.

3rd Warm vs. cool tones: Cool tones like blue, green, and violet have a relaxing impact on us, whilst warm tones like red, orange, and yellow tend to energize us.

4th Taking the purpose of the room into consideration: a bedroom where you want to relax can be better served by a cooler color scheme, whilst a living room where you want to host guests might benefit from a more colorful color scheme.

How can we design our room with the perfect color scheme?

Start with the space and its purpose:

  • Think about the scale of the space: Darker hues can make a tight space feel even cozier, while lighter hues typically make a space feel bigger and airier
  • Consider the purpose of the space: vibrant, upbeat colors may encourage energy in the kitchen, whereas soothing blues or lavenders may work well in a bedroom.

Think about the existing elements:

  • Lighting: Colors might seem differently in natural light. Take into account the amount of natural light coming into the space and if it is generally warm or cool. The kind of bulbs you use can also be affected by artificial illumination.
  • Flooring and furniture: Examine the colors of your main furniture pieces, such as your cabinets, flooring, and huge sofa. These constant elements might serve as the foundation of your palette, or you can use them to introduce contrasting colors.

Finding inspiration and making decisions:

  • The 60-30-10 rule: This is a handy guideline for creating a cohesive color scheme. Use your dominant color for 60% of the space (walls), a secondary color for 30% (furniture, rugs), and an accent color for 10% (throw pillows, artwork).
  • Compare and contrast colors: Hold paint swatches or fabric samples together to see how they interact. Look for colors that complement each other without clashing

Color psychology in interior design isn't just about picking a pretty paint color. It's about harnessing the power of color to create a space that truly functions for you. By understanding how different colors influence our moods and emotions, you can design a space that promotes relaxation, creativity, productivity, or whatever vibe you're going for. It's a powerful tool that can elevate your space from simply looking good to feeling truly good.