Get Your Color Scheme Right

A color scheme is the foundation of all of your home decorating projects. Creating the right color scheme gives you a roadmap to choosing the right decor and furnishings. It’s so much easier to choose the right surfaces and accessories if you already have a color palette to work with.


Color Scheme vs. Color Palette

You might see the terms colors scheme and color palette used interchangeably, which is fine.

Technically, there is a little difference between a scheme and a palette, and knowing this can make decorating much easier. Your color scheme is the very basic plan for how you’ll be putting colors together for your home. Using color theory, you could easily create a monochromatic color scheme using neutral colors, or maybe another simple scheme, but the precise colors won’t be defined just yet.

Knowing which type of color scheme you’ll be putting together is your starting point to creating a color palette. Your home’s color palette will have the specific colors you plan to use in your home. By fine-tuning your color palette you can choose paint, fabric, and decor, with confidence.  So, when you think of your color scheme as just a reference for all of your future decorating projects, it’s a much easier task to create one. The real fun comes when you are able to refine your color choices into paint samples and swatches for your home makeover.

 How to Get Your Color Scheme Right This Time

If you feel as though your attempts at creating a new color scheme have fallen short, here are the ways that you may have gone wrong in the past, (and how to fix them!)


Maybe You Just Don’t Know Where to Start

If you’re starting with an envelope filled with paint samples and fabric swatches and absolutely no plan, your color scheme is going to go off-track pretty quickly.

 The best color schemes for your home aren’t created by inspiration alone. Because your color scheme is the basis for so many future decorating decisions, you’ll want to take the time to choose the right type. You don’t have to memorize complicated rules, but if you learn the basics of the color wheel it can open up so many color scheme options.

Identify the type of color scheme that appeals to you, then you can personalize it with the colors you love. Once you know the basic colors you’ll want in your home, you can turn to inspiration to create a color palette with those colors. Taking the time to start with a defined color scheme actually frees you up to be more creative and allows you to get the colors right.


Are You Afraid of Change?

Change can be hard! One of the most common color scheme errors is trying to add new colors to an outdated palette. The taupe paint color you chose fifteen years ago may be a “safe neutral”, but color trends have come and gone since you painted your home with that pinkish-taupe.

While your favorite color trend may be poised for a comeback, it may not be this year.  Adding new accessories and pops of color will not make a color with an outdated or wrong undertone look right. It may be time to change every color in your color scheme and start fresh.

If you have been putting off major color changes because you are afraid you’ll choose the wrong colors, then start with the most basic one in the room. Look at recent color trends to see what colors are popular right now. If you’re risk-adverse with color, start with a simple neutral color scheme with colorful accents.


So Many Colors, so Little Space

Decorating without a color scheme in place can leave you with a house filled with colors that have no relation to each other. It all starts so innocently when you shop without a plan and bring mismatched accessories home. Mismatched paint colors are also a sign of a color scheme gone wrong. Without a color blueprint, every room looks different which can make your home look chaotic and small.

Even if you love lots of color in your home and varying paint color from room to room, you can still work with a color scheme to help the entire house feel more spacious and coordinated. With a color scheme figured out, you can decorate throughout the house with your colors but in different ways. A living room with beige walls can have blue and white accents, while your master bedroom can have blue walls with added pops of color in white and beige. You still get the color individuality you love, but by working with a color scheme first your home will look more pulled-together.