Your Guide to Experimenting with Color

Some people have a fear of heights, others a fear of bees, and still others have a fear of color. It’s no joke that color is an incredibly powerful tool. It can encourage a happy or relaxed mood depending on the hue, and has the innate ability to show the best parts of your personality - but only if you let it! If the idea of bringing anything but beige into your home has your knees quaking, we’ve got a few tricks to share that will have you experimenting in no time.

White’s Alright

Don’t assume that color is impossible in a white walled home. For renters unable to change the wall color or for those of us who are a bit hesitant to shy from this basic neutral, color is easily incorporated through a room’s accessories. Transform a monochromatic living room by filling it with bright throw pillows, blankets and rugs. In the bedroom, shake those white walls up with vibrant wall art and linens. Even a white kitchen can gain colorful personality by showing off bright serving pieces on open shelving.

Neutral Foundation

Sometimes we can lean a little too heavily on what we deem a “safe” color palette – things like beige, gray and neutral olive tones. What you might not realize though is the great potential of these shades when used as a foundation. For example, gray walls go from dreary to dimensional with a collection of bright color photography hung on top. Need another example? Don’t bother changing the color in your tan living room – Breathe new life into it simply by incorporating ocean blue accents, such as table lamps and an upholstered side chair.

Target, $279

Listen to Yourself

When experimenting with color, it can be difficult to wade through the sea of options. If you too find yourself overwhelmed gazing at all the options in the paint department at your local hardware store, it’s time to take a mental (and physical) step backward. Give the decision a little space, a week should do, and really observe your tastes. Maybe you subconsciously took a second look at a pair of red heels at the mall the other day? Or perhaps you’re responding to the shades of green springing up around you this season. Let these moments be your guide to finding the right color palette for you.

Create a Focal Point

Are you nodding along to the suggestions so far? Or are you thinking to yourself “I LOVE color. I’m just not sure that I want to commit…”? Try using your favorite color in a small dose as a focal point. Rather than painting an entire room in aqua, choose one wall to pay homage to the color. Or if a single wall of color doesn’t make sense in the space, another low-commitment option is to paint only part of all four walls. Adding color below a chair rail or a band just below the ceiling could give your room the personality it lacks, without major labor and expense. 

Challenge yourself to move away from the same three shades of cream that you’ve been living with for years. If your space is feeling a little bland, sometimes all it needs is one new color to give it a fresh new feel and tone. Make this your year to mix things up, and embrace a whole new hue!

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Carrie Waller is a freelance writer and designer, as well as the creative director of lifestyle and DIY blog, Dream Green DIY. She lives in Lynchburg, Virginia alongside her husband and 3 "babies" - a hound dog and two rambunctious felines. Find her on PinterestFacebookTwitter and Instagram.
 

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