The following article was originally written for my E zine ~Beautiful Home and Life Design~ to educate my clients on why the colors we choose to decorate with have an emotional effect on how we feel in the room.
Color has the power to change our mood
Color energizes, it calms, it soothes, it provokes, it stabilizes, it softens, and it creates chaos. Playing with color is playing with your emotions. We use color to lift our spirits, to inspire us and to make our homes feel safe and warm. Color associations are defined by the culture we live in and our personal past.
Red is the color we pay the most attention to. It is the most energetic color, it’s hot and dramatic. Red is the color of love, passion and desire; red hearts, red roses. A “red-letter day” is terrific; wearing a “scarlet letter” marks you as untouchable. On the flip side, red is for danger, speed, and anger; think of stop signs. It increases the heart rate; you won’t find it in the emergency room. It stimulates the appetite; you will find it in most food establishments. Have you ever gone into a pizza place or Chinese restaurant that wasn’t red?
Pink is soft, sweet and secure. Hot pink is playful and assertive.
Orange has become a lot more acceptable in the past few years. Bright orange is loud and flamboyant. Orange is the color of affordability; think Home Depot and ING, it appeals to the masses. Warm terra-cotta, apricots and peach tones are more sophisticated. Fall leaves, pumpkins and Halloween come to mind when you think of orange.
Yellow is warm and friendly. It inspires. Energy, joy, happiness and hope are all associated with yellow. Yellow creates a glow even in the darkest rooms. Like the sunshine, yellow is warming but too much of it can be burning. Bright yellow causes tension and stress.
Green is the color most often cited as a favorite. It represents nature, health, money and prosperity. Green is cool, calm and healing; think of a spa. Hospital scrubs are usually green. A negative effect is jealousy; being “green with envy”. It’s good to be “seeing green” (money); and bad to be “turning green” (sick).
Blue is tranquil, calm, stable and secure. Blue is the color most used in business to show reliability, integrity and trust. Navy blue demands respect. Blue slows the pulse, lowers the body temperature and reduces the appetite. A great color for a weight loss clinic.
Purple represents royalty, dignity and spirituality. Purple is an exotic color. There is a fine line between spiritual ceremony and magical mystery. Purple is imaginative and creative.
Brown is down to earth, warm and secure. Lighter shades of beige and taupe are classic neutrals. Deep browns add richness and depth. Browns are generally appealing to everyone.
Black is another mysterious color. In the spectrum it is the absence of light, therefore, no color. Formal, elegant, sophisticated and sexy black is in contrast to the black of death, mourning and witchcraft. Black is a great accent color.
Gray is the most neutral. Gray has quiet strength and longevity; think granite and metal. Gray is timeless. It is best used as an accent.
White is what we see when all the colors come together in perfect balance. White is pure, simple and clean. Reverence, peace and joy are seen in white Easter lilies. Every color goes with white. Too much white can be uncomfortable and hard on the eyes.
My daughter’s Marketing class at Bryant University discussed the psychology of color today.
Now that you know the emotions behind the colors, can you think of any instances where color played a part in your buying decision?
Have you ever walked into a room and felt uneasy because of the color?
What colors do you love to be surrounded by?
What color would you never be able to live with? Why?
Please leave a comment below. I’m interested to learn how color affects you.
Did you know that you can contract me for a one hour consultation to be sure you get the color just right?
Contact me today to begin the transformation for your house. Hiring a professional saves you time, frustration and money. You and your house or office deserve it!