1. What is the function/s of this room?
Before I begin the design process or choose a color palette for a room, I consider all of the functions that room is going to serve. Nearly every room in your home is going to serve a primary function, but there may be secondary functions that you want to take into consideration as well.
For instance, we relax in our living room, but it’s also where I do a lot of my writing and research for the blog. Our dining room’s main function is eating and entertaining, but I also create and photograph a lot of DIY’s in there. I’ll take all of those main and secondary functions into consideration when I’m considering the next question which is. . .
2. How do I want to feel when I’m in this room?
This is the question I ask myself before I do anything to a room. My answer is largely determined by how the room is going to be used.
In our living room I want to feel calm and quiet, but I also want there to be an undercurrent of energy that will inspire me to read and write rather than just veg out and sleep.
In our dining room, I want it to be a little dramatic and moody and a mix of casual and fancy but I don’t want it to feel heavy or oppressive.
I will usually choose 3-5 adjectives that describe the feeling I want to create in a room and use them to guide my answers to the next question.
3. What colors make me feel that way?
I know that whites, blues, greys, and greens generally give me a calm feeling so those are colors that I would lean towards when I’m thinking about colors to put in my living room.
Blacks, charcoal greys, deep greens and other earth tones, vibrant and deep blues, and jewel tones can give that dramatic and moody vibe I want so I might consider colors along those lines for my dining room.
Here are some general guidelines that match colors with moods/atmospheres that they are often associated with. Remember though, it’s not just a color that affects mood but also it’s tone and level of intensity. A hot pink room will have a certain loud and fun energy to it whereas a soft blush colored room can feel very calm and inviting.
- Reds: Vibrant, Energizing, Passionate, Intense
- Blues: Calming, Relaxing, Contemplative,
- Green: Energetic, Calming, Life giving
- Pink: Romantic, Soft, Soothing
- Whites: Crisp, Clean, Pure, Calming, Energizing
- Greys: Serious, calming, stability
- Blacks: Moody, Bold, Dramatic,
- Purples: Elegant, Luxurious, sophisticated
- Yellows: Happy, Cheerful, Bold
- Oranges: Warm, energizing, welcomin
4. What colors do I like?
This may seem like a super basic question and it is, but it’s also an important one. Your home should be a reflection of you and what you love regardless of trends or whatever the market is saying is the color of the year or whatever some random blogger (ahem) puts on their site as a guide. Your favorite colors are a good starting point. It doesn't mean you can't venture out from them, but it gives you a place to start rather than being encumbered by all of the possibilities.