Many homeowners may be intimidated by adding color to a new custom home project. Neutral palates are always safe, blending seamlessly with natural materials incorporated into the home. Choosing colors for walls in certain rooms, particularly bold ones, can be a daunting endeavor for homeowners, even with the help of a decorator, as they can create quite a statement. But that is precisely the reason it can be so rewarding, because it can so simply define a space, create a mood and infuse personality.
No doubt, when color is desired for certain spaces, careful consideration should be given to other decorative elements in the room, the adjoining spaces and the flow in-between. Color may also elicit powerful emotional responses, which should be factored into the room’s primary function. Adding bold paint colors to walls in more private or separate spaces, such as bathrooms, bedrooms and studies are less tricky as they tend to be separated from the main flow of the home’s living area. Both the size and design of the home really dictate what areas would benefit from desired colored accents on one or all walls and how to tie it in with the rest of the home.
The following are some basic ideas, concepts and tips for adding color to the walls in your custom built home:
- Adding a punch of color to just one wall in a main living space, such as the living room, will immediately change the focal point and personality of the room without embarking on a big decorating project. Painting a niche or the back of a bookshelf can be particularly impactful in creating a new area of interest.
- When introducing a new wall color, pull from an existing pattern in the room, ideally the largest one, such as carpet or drapes.
- Use contrast to define the formality of a room and low contrast colors to create soothing and calming qualities. Living rooms and dining rooms are typically formal spaces, inviting high contrast in the form of light and dark values of color in combination.
- Consider the emotional values associated with the colors chosen for each room, what that color represents or symbolizes to you and what kind of mood you want to set in the room. Browns and greens often represent nature, and blue is calming, all of which are good colors for restful spaces. Reds, orange and yellow are more exciting and vibrant, better suited to more lively spaces. And, the darker the value of the color, the stronger the emotion it evokes.
- Consistency in the color palate is important, particularly when wall colors are introduced to adjoining spaces. A key interior decorating principle emphasizes the 60-30-10 rule, which divides colors into percentages, to ensure the room is properly balanced. The walls are the dominant color as they occupy 60% of the room, 30% of the room’s color is upholstery and 10% is accents.
- Look to multiple sources for inspiration. Home and decorating magazines are always a good source for those hesitant to add colors to the walls, boasting bold and creative looks that can simultaneously make a statement while tying into a decorative element from an adjoining space. Also, professionals suggest looking to one’s closet for a starting point, as we tend to collect clothing in colors that we are most drawn to.
For more inspiration when pondering the addition of wall color to rooms in the home, click on the images below.