Color Wheel Basics: How to Pick Color Schemes for the Home

Decorating your home is no easy feat, and when it comes to choosing paint colors, it can already be hard enough to pick and choose which hues work for you. There are so many different shades, so how it possible to narrow down which ones go great with your furniture and unique design style? The Front Door is here to help! No matter what color you want to start with, there’s a color scheme that will help you figure out that wall color and matching accents to help pull the room together. Stick to this color coordination guide using hues from the color wheel and you can’t go wrong. These are scientifically proven to be eye-catching, so you won’t have to worry about mismatching. Say goodbye to neutrals, and open up your horizons to the world of color!

The Main Color Schemes

It might be a refresher, but before we get started, here’s a recap of the basic color wheel.

color-wheel

The Primary Colors

When you think of the primary colors, memories of learning about red, blue, and yellow from kindergarten come to mind, and you’re not wrong. These are the main hues on the color wheel we need in order to create any other color, so these basic colors are a great foundation for any room. Whether you want to work in a bright red or introduce a calming blue, using a primary color can boost your room’s energy and guarantee that it will be attractive to all.

The Secondary Colors

When we mix two of the primary colors on the color wheel, we get secondary colors. Orange, green, and violet are the next basic colors on the list and they are great for complementing or contrasting the primary colors.

The Tertiary Colors

Last but not least, the tertiary colors are created when we mix secondary and primary colors. There are six tertiary colors that finish the color wheel and create a diverse range of rainbow hues to work with when decorating your home.

Now that you know the basics, take a look at the common color schemes below and design your room like a pro!

Analogous

analagous-colors

For the first color scheme on our list, simply use colors that are next to each other on the color wheel. They usually match well and create an easy design that looks neat and comforting. Analogous color schemes are harmonious and organically aesthetic since you can find them most often in nature. Choosing three to five analogous colors creates a diverse range in hues that can work from a red-orange to deep violet or from sunny yellow to a calming teal blue. No matter what color you start with, decide which direction you want to go, and there are endless possibilities!

For our analogous room, we started with dark indigo and added hues to get to a vivacious lime green for an eclectic cool-colored scheme! The dark blue Aria 3 Pc. Sectional and Aria Ottoman included patterned accent pillows with various shades of green and blue that matched the Aria Accent Chair, creating an easy start to using this analogous scheme. For other matching accents, we added the Dawn Discovery I and II Canvases and a green Torino Ombre Rug to complete the cool-toned room and painted an accent wall pale blue to create some light balance.

Other items shown: Facet Table Lamp, Facet Accent Lamp, Pass Through Vases
For more analogous color scheme items, add the: Narrow Bottle Vase and Taj Candleholders.

Complementary

complementary-colors

Next on the list, the complementary color scheme simply utilizes pairs of colors which, when combined, cancel each other out to create a blackish or whitish gray since they are exact opposites on the color wheel. The basic complementary color pairings are red and green, blue and orange, and yellow and violet. Using a complementary color scheme from the color wheel is fun and easy to use in the home to create a natural balance between a cool color and a warm color for some eye-catching results.

For our complementary room, we chose a child’s bedroom to explore the beautiful combination of bright yellow and various shades of violet. The walls are a lovely shade of lilac that is naturally feminine and sweet while the yellow comforter brings out some sunny personality to give the room a little more brightness.

Items shown: Chloe Bedroom Furniture, Harlow Crystal Lamps
For more complementary color scheme items, add the: Beach Princess Kids Twin Comforter Set, Graphic Storage Basket, and Sense Shag Rug (Plum).

Monochromatic

monochromatic-colors

To keep your color scheme really simple, how about you just use one hue? Sound scary? It might be, but a monochromatic color scheme can look elegant if you have a lot of pieces in the same color and can’t quite seem to get enough of it. Monochromatic colors are all the colors (shades, tones, and tints) of a single hue that are created by simply adding white, gray, or black to make it lighter or darker.

For our monochromatic room, we used a rich navy blue to decorate a dining room. Beautiful Sapa runners with intricate patterning in denim tones hang regally from the wall adjacent to bold framed blue prints while the same runner drapes the table beneath various blue-toned Oki Candleholders. For the finishing touch, the blue patterned rug exhibits both light and dark shades of navy in an exquisite floral print.

Other items shown: Urban Loft 5 Pc. Dining Group, Urban Loft Server
For more monochromatic color scheme items, add the: Magnolia Home Emmie Kay Navy Rug, Watery Stripe Vase, and Painted Puzzle Canvas.

Split-Complementary

split-complementary-colors

If you want to spice up a room and prove your color coordinating trendsetter skills, step your design guru skills up a notch with a split-complementary color scheme. The split-complementary color scheme uses a base color of your choice with the two colors adjacent to its complementary hue. This color scheme has the same striking contrast as the regular complementary color scheme, but has less tension.

For our split-complementary room, we used a refreshing teal blue for the base color with its split-complementary hues of mustard yellow and burnt orange. To illuminate the yellow, we also added metallic gold accent pieces for more flair. For the teal blue base, the Eden Settee and Hilton Accent Chair match the Oki Candleholders and Vases prominently on display while the Teal Woods Gold Foil Lacquer Print in the background combines the same teal with the mustard yellow also found on the Seneca Pillow.

The golden Linden Coffee Table and Sofa Table matches the mustard yellow and helps incorporate the metallic shade of the burnt orange found in the Adelle Table Lamp and Facet Ceramic Side Table. For the finishing touch, the rustic orange also beautifully mixes with the teal turquoise on the Rainbow Paper Vase.

Triadic

triad-colors

Last but not least, you might want to use the triadic color scheme. A triadic color scheme uses colors that are spaced evenly around the color wheel. This color combination tends to be pretty vibrant even if you use unsaturated hues and is great for exploring diverse shades that work great together.

For our triadic room, we used the primary colors for our color scheme! Sophisticated shades of red, yellow, and blue are great for brightening up any space in the home, so we used them in the dining room. The Folk Tile Rug mixes these colors in unsaturated tones in a unique block pattern while blue placemats on the table and red flowers on the fireplace match well with the yellowish wood tone of the Oxford Dining Table.

Items shown: Cottage Side Chairs
For more triadic color scheme items, add the: Vin French Framed Print, Oldsmar Bench, Pierced Lantern Vase (Tomato Red), and Souk Vases.

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