“Color resonates with people in different ways. We all have a favorite color or color that we use more during specific periods of life. But the color you use in a design project can say a lot about the work itself. That’s a scientific fact.” -Carrie Cousins, 2014.
Have you ever designed a room only to realize later that it didn’t make you feel the way you wanted it to? That might not just be you. The colors we use when designing a room, a house, or a logo can evoke specific physical and emotional reactions. But how do we know if this is true?
Color science is the science which is used to determine how specific colors affect your mood, your physical state, and even your thoughts and it’s nothing new. The science of color has been around since the early 19th century with works such as Johan Wolfgang von Goethe’s “Theory of Colours”. Goethe’s work, Written in 1810, inspired centuries of color theory which have found reoccurring themes, moods, and physical experiences with specific colors and color families.
So, how does this affect your home? If you are looking for your home or a specific room to convey the desired feeling, the furniture, painting, and accent pieces are all important. However, color is just as important (if not more so) when establishing a mood for your home.
Conveying Tranquility: Green
Being the universal symbol for ecology, green is often associated with nature, growth, and healing. Around the world, green symbolizes luck and the heavens. Having always invoked feelings of harmony and peace, Green has the power to transform the mood of the room into a calming atmosphere. It is also known to alleviate anxiety and depression.
Placing a green sofa in your living room or choosing a green paint will invoke feelings of tranquility and balance.
Conveying Prestige: Black
Being such a distinct color, black stands out from all others. Black used in offices is often associated with professionalism and management. While in marketing, black is used to convey authority or influence. Typically associated with feelings of strength and power, placing a black accent piece in your room can invoke feelings of prestige and influence.
Conveying Creativity: Purple
Historically, purple colored fabrics were prized among people and were often associated with royalty and wealth. Leading into the modern day, the elusiveness of the color has made it more often associated with mystery and magic. Being most associated with these two things, purple has become a color that elicits creativity in those who view it. Having a purple wall or accent piece provokes wonder and brings out the artist within you.
Conveying Positive Energy: Yellow
When wanting to fill a room with energy, yellow is the perfect color! But be careful, too much yellow can have the opposite effect. Associated with optimism, warmth, and happiness, the color Yellow can shed some sunlight on any room it’s in, creating the feeling of energy and warmth. Having a yellow accent piece or yellow accessories are the perfect way to brighten up a room. However, too much yellow could generate more negative effects. Many studies have found that babies cry more in yellow rooms while other studies have found that couples argue more in yellow kitchens.
Conveying Excitement: Red
Being the second most popular favorite color in the world, red is the color that is associated with passion, adventure, violence, and anger. Of all the colors, red provokes the strongest emotional response. A stroke of red implies attention to detail, while a dominance of red implies extremity and severity. Being such an intense color, red is perfect as an accent piece such as a rug or a chair.
Conveying Ambition: Blue
Blue is the most popular favorite color in the world. Being such, there is a great deal of meaning attached to the color. Evoking feelings such as hope, serenity, intelligence, trust, credibility, and loyalty, blue is one of the most diverse colors. Darker blues are most often associated with feelings connected to ambition and perseverance. Having a dark blue sofa or a dark blue palette in a room will help perfectly generate those feelings tied to ambition and drive.
Much like green, blue also invokes feelings of tranquility and calm. These two colors can be paired together to express feelings of both tranquility and ambition.