When choosing the colour of a room, finding the right colour scheme can be difficult. This is especially true if trying to evoke a particular mood within that room. Most people would agree that a bedroom should provide a calming, soothing space, whereas a living room may want a more sociable vibe. Colour psychology-based tips are a good starting point when redecorating your home.

The basis of colour psychology was formed by Sir Isaac Newton in 1666. The English scientist discovered that when pure white light travels through a prism, the light separates into a visible spectrum of all the colours. This discovery led to further experimentation with colour, revealing that different combinations of light can form different colours. Interestingly, some colours, such as magenta and green, even cancel each other out, resulting in white light. 

Although many of us might not consciously analyse the effects of a room’s colour on our moods, colour can influence our thoughts and feelings. The varying effects of colour can also come from the shades and tones used, as these affect the vibrancy of the colour. Dark colours create a generally warmer effect and can seem more intimate and sophisticated. Light colours are typically cool and airy, creating a feeling of space. 

Many colours elicit similar reactions in all of us, but colour can also influence us according to age, gender, ethnicity or climate. Some colours are more subjective, but many have clear universal meaning. 

Warm colours such as red, orange and yellow can offer comfort at one end of the spectrum yet evoke feelings of anger at the other. Red is certain to raise a room’s energy levels but is also proven to raise blood pressure – so it might not be a good choice for the bedroom.

Cool colours, including blue, green and purple can be calming, or at the other end of the spectrum induce feelings of sadness. Blue is a popular choice for bedrooms and bathrooms as it lowers blood pressure and heart rate.

Choosing your colours wisely is crucial to creating the effect that you want. To get help with this important part of the decorating process, look at magazines, colour charts and websites for inspiration. Experienced decorating company Scott Anson Painters has previously blogged about the importance of colour when decorating the home.

As paint colours offer almost limitless possibilities, consider choosing other furnishings and accessories first. Identifying carpets, curtains and throws can help you to find the perfect colour scheme.