Choosing a Color Scheme for Your Entire House
Can the perfect color palette improve your mood, boost your immune system, and make you smarter? Doubtful. But choosing a color scheme for your entire house can make your surroundings more harmonious—and might even make you smile. These strategies will make it look like your home’s got it together, even if you don’t.
The secret is not to think “matchy-matchy.” Think “mood.” Colors can evoke emotion; yellow can perk you up, blue can calm you down, and red can energize you. Think about the mood you want, and look for inspiration that encapsulates that. Do you want to recreate the colors of a vacation, or use a combination from a favorite blanket? Is there a hue that attracts you? Don’t limit yourself to a strict palette. You can pick out colorful new furniture as you’re choosing your scheme or refurbish what you have.
Start With White
If you just chose a rainbow as your inspiration, let’s head on back down to earth. That’s too many colors—and you’ll need a couple of boring ones. Find a white shade that will work with the undertones of your other colors and the architectural details of your house. If you already have wood elements in your home, make sure the stain will complement your white. You’ll paint the trim in each room that shade, as well as the ceiling to create a flow that unites your living spaces.
You Need a Neutral
Don’t yawn. Your neutral will be the glue that keeps your palette together. For years, the go-to neutral has been a shade of gray or beige, and you’ll be staggered at how many shades there are to choose from. But you have other options if you can keep it muted. “Millennial blush” shades are some of the newest neutrals in style, and dusty blue is edging out gray. You can use more white if you want a brighter vibe.
Pick Two More
If your inspiration features one dominant color, you can choose different shades of that. If you have an extremely complicated vision board by now, find two hues that stand out to you and blend them with your neutral. “Harmonious” colors sit near each other on the color wheel. “Complementary” colors are on opposite sides of it. Other colors will pop up as your interiors come together, but these three will recur in different ways throughout your place.
Choosing a color scheme for your entire house doesn’t mean it has to be coordinated or uniform. Your wall paint in one room might be the color of the sofa in the next. The hall’s dominant shade might pick up accents in a bedroom. The idea is to use the colors that make you happy to give your home a feeling of balance. It should feel cohesive but subtle. Take lighting into account, and play around with items until it feels right. It’s a process—enjoy it.