Unpacking the chemistry of colour in our interior design
If interior designers are the plastic surgeons of architecture, their understanding and application of colour psychology is the trick of their trade. Where laymen see a well-designed room and perhaps appreciate its individual pieces, a designer sees a collage where walls are the canvas and furniture is the brushstrokes. Today, we’ll dissect their process and stitch together a narrative that redefines how a master of the mind can doctor a space into a masterpiece with a little sleight of hand toward colour selection.
So grab your scalpel and syringes, and come along as we shrink-re-think how hues and tones shape our spaces, exploring the profound impact of colour on our psyche and well-being.
Inject some emotion into the design
Treat colour theory like a thought experiment, and imagine walking into a room that instantly lifts your spirits or a space that cocoons you in comfort.
Woven by the deft surgeon-hands of colour psychology, warm tones like those reds and yellows can evoke a sense of communion and coziness, while cooler blues and greens create an atmosphere of serenity and tranquillity. Dark colours are often used in smaller rooms or areas where a sense of enclosure is desired, and light colours create the illusion of more space, making them suitable for areas where an airy feel is preferred.
Understanding the psychological implications of these colour families empowers interior designers to manipulate space and influence how people feel within it.
Prescribe the perception of the space
Expanding on the emotional component, strategic colour application in design pre-emptively (pre) communicates (scribes) the nature of the space and its utility – before our consciousness catches up.
For example, vibrant, energetic shades of red, orange and yellow are known to implant stimulation and enthusiasm into a room. So, choosing from this pallet strikes the perfect chord for spaces dedicated to social gatherings (think living rooms and dining areas). Conversely, subdued, earthy, cool tones like blues, greens and purples can transform a bedroom into a serene sanctuary, promoting relaxation and restful sleep.
Still a skeptic? Count how many blue bathrooms you’ve seen or used in your life, and feel the jurisdiction you once felt over your brain cells unravel.
Keep the design cultured to perfection
Diving deeper than the aesthetics of our surface, colour psychology is a language that transcends geographical boundaries. Different cultures associate colours with different meanings, and savvy interior designers take this into account to create spaces that resonate with their clients. For example, in Western cultures, blue may symbolize calmness, while in some Eastern cultures, it signifies strength and stability.
Understanding these nuances ensures that interior designs are not only visually appealing but also culturally sensitive.
Balance the colourful composition with neutrals
When the interior design gets carried away and falls out of balance, colour theory and science unite through the remedy of incorporating the basics to neutralize. Like the chameleons of interior design, neutral colours seamlessly adapt to various styles and trends. The timeless elegance of whites, greys, and beiges not only provides a versatile backdrop for furniture and accessories but also creates a sense of openness and sophistication.
Neutrals serve as a blank canvas (like a base), allowing homeowners to experiment with pops of colour through accent pieces.
Take it from the lab to the field
In the intricate DNA of design, colour psychology fires through our neurons and embodies the ambiance of our living spaces. As interior designers (at heart or at work), recognizing the emotional resonance of colours empowers us to craft environments that not only dazzle the eye but also speak to the soul.
So, the next time you embark on a design journey, remember the profound influence colours wield in the cooperation of our compositions, creating mental symmetry from a physical space of sinuousness – like silent architects that shape the visceral essence of our homes.