Choosing the right colour for a room is a complex decision, because each colour can transform a room in a completely different way. From blush pinks to sapphire blues and warm mustards, there’s just so much choice. I’ve collated three tips that have helped me decide upon colour palettes during my house renovation and will hopefully save you some time when making the big decision. 

Contrast warm with cool 

The colour wheel consists of warm tones such as yellow and orange, and cool colours such as blue and violet. Contrasting invigorating warm colours with calming cool colours can achieve a perfect aura of serenity. I used this technique in our primary bathroom of our old Georgian house, which was a beautiful room, flooded with natural light. For the walls, I used Farrow & Ball’s Ball Green No.75. To compliment this cool green shade, I installed corduroy mustard yellow cord blinds by Rose Uniacke. The yellow provides a little pop of warmth, and texture, to a serene room. 

Evoke Emotion

When I’m struggling to choose a colour, I jot down three words I want the room to make me or my guests feel. For example, in my daughter Honor’s bedroom, I wanted to create a cheerful, warm and playful room. But just because it belonged to a child, I didn’t want it to feel babyish or sickly. If you’re stuck, you can use websites such as Color Meanings to find which colour is most associated with the emotions I’ve jotted down. That’s how I decided on using yellow tones which I incorporated using Molly Mahon’s Seed print for the curtains, and Earthborn’s Little Rascal for the walls. I definitely think mustard yellow was the right base colour for this room, because I always get a happy feeling stepping in here, especially when the sunlight streams through. If you’re going for a more calm and peaceful room, why not try shades of blue? Dusky pink is also famous for having a calming effect. Or perhaps go for green if you are looking for an atmosphere of growth and freshness. 


The Sophisticated Monochromatic Look

Some spaces don’t require an abundance of patterns and colour; they can be quite overwhelming if there are too many contrasting shades. For me, the kitchen is a place where only one statement colour is necessary. With only one shade, you can achieve a striking look of sophistication. I used Fired Earth’s Carbon Blue, a rich dark blue that really stands out from a clean neutral backdrop. Even though the use of one colour may seem simple, you can further develop the look by using hints of your chosen colour in various patterns around the room. I did this by implementing beautifully hand-painted blue and white Milagros tiles from Mexico as well as installing blue and white patterned fabric shades by Alice Palmer to tie in my chosen blue colour throughout the kitchen. This really gives the space a well thought-out and finished look. Lastly, I added tones of terracotta all over the room - in the grouting, a runner along the floor, vintage ceramics hung on the wall, and in various kitchen trinkets and vases. It’s one of my favourite colour combinations in the whole house.