How to Use Paint Colors to Change the Feeling of a Room
Color is a powerful agent for transforming the appearance of any space or thing. But can we also use it to change the mood of a room? Can we use color as an element to influence the way the people who enter a room feel? Is there a way to subtly but effectively evoke the emotions inside a space by altering the colors of the room?
The answer is yes and if you have been asking these questions, you are in the right place to get answers.
What is color?
Although we view color as a tangible quality of the objects we look at, color is really the result of how objects interact with light. Sunlight, or white light, is actually made up of seven different wavelengths of light known as the color spectrum.
The bands of lights that make up the spectrum are the same colors that form a rainbow are red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet. Rainbows happen when white light is split into its component colors by water in the atmosphere.
Why and how does color affect people?
Because color is light, colors can influence our mood and behavior, the same way that sunlight does. When the sun is bright, people feel energetic. But when it is sunset, we slow down and want to sleep.
Since white light is made up of different types of light, it should not be surprising that each band of light will also have a specific effect on the human mind.
Here is a peek into some of the ways colors affect people:
- Colors influence temper, energy levels, sexual passion, and hunger
- Colors can make people more creative, communicative, fearful, aggressive, or passionate
- Colors can make rooms feel more relaxing, intimate, somber, or formal
- Colors alter people’s perception of the size and shape of a room
Generally, as far as changing people’s perception of the dimensions of a room is concerned, here are the basic rules for using color in the room:
- Dark or warm colors make walls and objects appear closer; they appear to be advancing toward us.
- Bright or lighter or cooler colors cause walls and objects to recede; they appear to be farther away.
By understanding how to use these different phenomena, we can make rooms and objects appear larger or smaller, or even change the shape and focal point of a room. We can also use them to hide features inside a room or call attention to certain aspects of the room, explains Archer Management Group. But to use color as a means of changing the vibes within a room, there are other guidelines to follow.
How do you want the room to feel?
Once you have identified the dominant emotion you want people to feel inside a room, you may proceed to choose the colors to support that mood. For instance, depending on whether you want your kitchen to be an energetic zone for family times or a quiet space for after-work retreats, you may choose to paint it in warm peach, terra cotta, and soft gold, or in the serene hues of blues, grays, and greens.
Here is a snippet of the various moods associated with different colors:
- Pink is lively, positive, fun, and exudes femininity
- Red evokes passion, daring, lust, hunger, and passion
- Orange arouses creativity, inspires warmth, and is relaxing
- Yellow feels friendly, welcoming, open, and intelligent
- Green moves us to tranquility, balance, and rest
- Blue encourages clarity, meditation, calm, and trust
- Violet motivates creativity, spirituality, and sexiness
How to use paint colors to change the mood of a room
To give you an idea of how to deploy this strategy, here are instances of these in action.
- To make a room feel cozier
Use dark colors to create warmth. Painting one or two of its walls in a dark accent color will make it feel snug. If the room has a high ceiling, painting it a dark color will make it feel lower and the room will not feel quite as large.
- To make a room relaxing
Soft tones and hues are more relaxing. They are less jarring to the senses. The mind associates light blue with the serenity of the sea and skies. Green is reminiscent of nature and the calming effect of natural environments.
- To create an energetic vibe
Bright bold colors inspire a more positive and energetic feel inside a room. Yellow is the color for creating joyfulness. Orange is an energetic color that is often used in exercise rooms because it stimulates people to motion.
When choosing the colors to match the desired mood for a room, do not simply paint everything in the room in that one color. Doing that would make the effect overpowering. Instead, create a color scheme or palette with that color as its dominant shade. And also infuse the color scheme into window treatments, pillows, furniture, carpet, and lighting.