How to use colour

At British Paints, we know that a little colour can go a long way. Here’s how to put it to good use in and around your home.

Colour can make a dramatic difference to the mood of a room and the people in it. Understanding colour and its effect is the first stage to choosing the right one for your room. So let’s have a closer look now at to how to use colours to their best effect at your place.

Be inspired

This is the fun part of deciding what colours are going to work best for your project. Have a look through interiors magazines or online design blogs for colour inspiration. Put together a mood board of your favourite images, so you have your ideas all in the one place, and you can ensure your colour palette isn’t wandering too far off track. Assuming you aren’t starting from scratch, you also have to be inspired by the non-negotiables in your room. Look at the flooring, the upholstery, and the accessories and artworks you love.

Consider the size

Colour can do many things to a room, one of them being to create an illusion of space or intimacy. If you have a small living room for example, light paint colours will make a room feel bigger and brighter. Pale walls are more reflective, making a space feel open and airy, and will help to maximise the effect of the natural light coming in. If you’re dreaming of a cosy, intimate lounge, painting the room in darker colours will give a sense that the walls (and ceiling) are closer.

Set the mood

Warm colours tend to be more stimulating and can therefore work really well in the more social rooms of your house – the kitchen and dining areas, or the living room. Cooler colours are more relaxing and bring a sense of calm to bedrooms and nurseries, so explore the spectrum of blues, greens and purples for a restful ambience. Cool colours are also credited with helping you to think more clearly, so are a good option in a home office.

Think outside the room

When using colour, it’s a good idea to think about how the tones will work as you travel from room to room. Considering your home as a whole will create a nice flow throughout. This doesn’t mean you can’t change up the colours from room to room, but if you can make the transition a comfortable one, you’ll be taking your scheme to the next level.

Add personality

Playing it safe with your paint colours is tempting – the theory being that neutral walls will go with anything. But a bland result can be a bit dispiriting and might feel somehow unfinished. On the flip side, a house that is designed with a beautiful colour scheme often leaves people with a lovely sense of positivity. Using colour in your home can be a wonderful way to bring a sense of your own personality and breathe new energy into a boring space. Remember, you’re the one who’s going to be living your colour, so choose something you’re going to love, rather than something that everyone else is doing.