Color Me Happy

2 years ago / by RASHMI GOPAL RAO
 Colors add life to any space
Have a home that represents who you are

It is often said that color is a power which directly influences the soul and a key factor that affects people’s moods and emotions. The right colors and its pairings can work wonders at the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual level.

There’s a reason we don’t see the world in black and white – Celerie Kemble

In fact, the science of color therapy or chromotherapy believes that color and colored light can help treat physical and mental health. It is believed that the different colors of the spectrum have different wavelengths and each color has its own energy. Given that colors are so significant, it is little wonder that color therapy is so important in homes and home décor.

“Our surroundings always play a crucial role in reflecting our moods and behavior. If one is enveloped in light and pleasant colors, one feels relaxed and at ease. Similarly, if the ambiance is too bright and aggressive, one may feel unmotivated and disturbed. A conscious color choice for your spaces can result in enabling better control over your feelings and emotions at home”.

says Rakhee Bedi Kumar, founding principal, RSDA

Colors for Positive Vibes in Homes

Given that colors have a powerful impact in instilling a sense of harmony and wellness in homes, there is a lot of importance given to the choice of colors and its combinations.  It is key to note that colors do not just mean paint on the walls, but also textures, patterns and even artifacts. While certain colors calm our minds, others can stimulate our mental activity; hence, it is important that we use colors in our interior spaces wisely.  “In home décor, color therapy is a holistic approach to healing,” says Devika Khosla, creative director, The Works Interiors. “Hence, an understanding of colors and their energies is important while designing a space, as this could steer the vibe of the room in a certain way and nurture the inhabitants. Besides using color on main walls, flooring or furniture, they can also be incorporated through textures like rugs, cushions, curtains, throws.”

To be sure of where one is heading, it is often recommended that one create mood boards for a space. Feng Shui and Vaastu experts also believe that when colors are used as per the right prescription and proportion, it has a therapeutic effect and can enhance healing and calming vibes.

Ideal Colors for Different Spaces

While colors are a very personal choice and depends on an individual’s taste, personality and requirement, here are some general pointers that can go a long way in maintaining an ambience that is pleasant and relaxing.   While red and orange are warm colors and represent fire elements, yellow represents positive energy.  Green is a symbol of balance and harmony, while blue indicates positivity and calm.  White and gray denote positivity, while purple is a symbol of luxury.

“Ideally, the ceilings should be white or of a lighter shade as compared to other walls, as they  reflect light,” Mayank Bhandari and Reetu Jain, co-founders of Beta Makers Lab. “The entrance, or foyer area. should be well lit and bright to exude warmth and positivity. It can be accompanied by natural elements like plants, fresh flowers or even sculptures. The living area is the ‘heart’ of the entire house. Natural and light tones are best suited for living areas as it makes the entire area look spacious.  It can be paired with other elements like swings, bursts of colors and reflective surfaces for an aesthetic appeal.”

The living room is one of the most used spaces of the house, and so neutral and wooden tones also help create an atmosphere of comfort and security.

“Ideally, bedrooms should have lighter tints to invoke restfulness and peace,” adds Khosla. “Pleasant and dreamy tints of blue, purple or even candy are suitable. Avoid dark hues as that might make the room gloomy and sometimes interrupt a good night’s sleep. When it comes to the kitchen, it is recommended to use tones like gray and beige to maintain hygiene. A color pop of yellow, ochre or even burnt sienna through backsplash or tiles can bring energy and freshness into the kitchen.”

Dining is one place where the family bonds over conversations and food. Since green promotes balance, renewal and refreshment, it is an ideal hue for the dining area.

“Studies show that red can accelerate our pulse and respiratory rate and also increases our appetite,” says Kumar. “Thus, designers often offer the color red and its variations for kitchen decor. However, the color emotionally ‘charges up’ the atmosphere, and when used in confined spaces, it can be overwhelming. Thus, it needs to be carefully implemented in any space.”

Fresh plants introduce a pop of green to the study
Fresh plants introduce a pop of green to the study

Since colors have the ability to inspire, excite, soothe and even agitate, they need to be explored in the children’s room with extra sensitivity. Again, pastels as the overall tone and using color pops of orange, bright pink, blue and even purple through accessories and wall paper is a good idea.

Dos and Don’ts

When designing a home, it is better to choose an overall color, i.e. your dominant shade, preferably a neutral one that runs across the entire house. Then, go room by room and layer colors through accessories and decor. For common areas, you can experiment with bold choices on one wall or highlight a particular spot. Avoid dark shades on every wall, as that will make the space look smaller and gloomy. Colors like dark gray and black should be used as a contrast and with care. Always take a holistic approach and bear in mind the likes and dislikes of everyone in the house.

According to Bhandari and Jain, of the Beta Makers Lab team. the colors in the overall scheme should complement each other and should be chosen after understanding the space as a whole.