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Understanding Color

Updated on April 14, 2018

Every time you walk into a room, color affects how you feel. Whether a paint color is subtle or dramatic, a color can encourage tranquility or boost energy.

To help you understand how color impacts a mood, we’ve divided it into four color groups.


These light and airy colors always help you feel uplifted. Colors like pale blue, pink, and lavender can encourage expression and enhance other colors. These colors are also easy to live with.


Surprise, surprise, these earthy tones keep you grounded! If you think of neutral colors, I hope you're thinking of a whole color family. It isn’t just grays and browns, but it can be expanded to slate and ochre. Whether your color has a warm or a cool tone, they are always reliable and can keep you level-headed. These colors work great in rooms that have a lot of natural light!


This pure and pristine canvas allows you to express yourself! Consider the white paint family the perfect backdrop to the life that is happening around it. Flexible and durable, the color will allow you to change your style as often as you wish!


Big drama to top-off a rich room. These colors are the opposite of an understatement and can fill a room with energy, creativity, and confidence.

So, what’s your personal color palette?

Your personal color palette already exists, you just have to trust your instincts. What do you gravitate towards? What do you love being surrounded by? Take those colors and embrace all of their design possibilities!

Step One: Look at your Closet!

Pull out all of your clothing that shares common hues and shades. Spread them out and observe what you're drawn to. Think about other major color decisions in your life — cars, tableware, etc. — take a note about what you mood they put you in.

Step Two: Visit the Paint Store!

Ask the store employee to help you find swatches of the colors that you resonate with and explore that color family. After you explore, work with the store to determine what colors contrast for an accent color. This will help make your space unique.

Step Three: Blend In or Stand Out?

Figure out how you want to feel in your home. Do you want to blend in or do you want to make a bold statement? If you want to blend in, go with the more subdued colors in your personal palette. If you want to go bolder, choose the more saturated hues from your personal color palette.

Are you still stuck?

Look at where you live, location can offer great color palettes. The beach, for instance, delivers cobalt blue sky, palm leaf green, and desert sand. It can be where you live, or someplace you love to visit, consider a place you love as personal palette inspiration.


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