Mar 18, 2015

Color theory encompasses a multitude of definitions, concepts, and design applications - enough to fill several encyclopaedias. Even though we're surrounded by color throughout our lives, choosing a paint color is usually a combination of interesting, frustrating, and intimidating. We all have a favorite color, yet when it comes to selecting the right or best color to use in our homes, choosing can often be difficult.

Wynn Waggoner, Interior Designer and the creative force behind Wynn Interiors, has wondered about this color conundrum and how to correct it so that homeowners can feel confident in their design choices - at least when it comes to color. She encourages readers to consider the following:

"We go into a paint store to see what colors we might like to use and are immediately greeted by a thousand choices, not only colors in different hues and finishes, but also textures - like suede, metallic, plasters, and much more. Now, of course you have to be an expert just to navigate through all the eye candy, let alone choose the right one.

To combat this overwhelming scenario, try choosing no more than three to six different colors that appeal to you. Look at the colors you've chosen and separate them by color family, such as red tones, blue tones, etc. Staying within each color family, compare your selections and you should be able to see which ones have a certain brightness vs those that are soft are subtle. This will not only help you choose, it will help with the finishes for the rest of the room. For wall colors, I usually go for the more subtle tones and find that when the whole room is finally painted, I have many bolder colors available to use as accents in the space to add additional depth and interest. I also find that artwork and pictures come forward and seem more interesting.

Second, and this may be the most important point, take the color samples home with you and look at each in the room. Hold them up one at a time or tape them to the wall. Step back so you can look at them from a distance. Immediately use a process of elimination and take away the ones you don't like.

Third, look at them throughout the day and into the evening as they will look different as the light changes. Since it's easy to purchase small amounts of sample paint, many have tried painting all the color patches on a wall at the same time. I find this visually confusing. The way the eyes sees color is different for each of us. When one color or shade of the same color is near another it affects the way we perceive it, especially in different lighting. Once you've narrowed your search down to two colors, if you want to see a larger patch on the wall, then that would be the time to try it.

Another pointer that may help is to look through magazines of finished rooms and emulate the color or color combinations that have already been done. By seeing the room as a completed project you'll have a vision of what your space might look like when it's done.

Ultimately how you feel when you walk into the room and how you feel living with the chosen color is the concern. Color affects us deeply and many times we are unaware in the moment how we may feel in the future. Pay close to not only to how the color you choose will interact with the aesthetics in your space, but also how it makes you feel."

Wynn will be sharing tips and advice much like her color theory ideas at the Denver Home Show. The Design Expert will be manning our Ask The Designer feature, where guests can sit down for a free one-on-one consultation. Bring your plans, questions, inspiration, and idea to Wynn and let her help you with your design dilemma.

The Denver Home Show takes over the National Western Complex from March 20-22, 2015. With hundreds of home and garden professionals ready to help you with your next home improvement project, it's the home and garden event of the season! Don't have tickets yet? Get 2-for-1 on Facebook and treat a friend or family member to the show.

MARCH 20 - 22, 2015.