Choose your room or home’s main, or dominant, Colour. This will be your launching point for the other colours and the common denominator that will tie everything else together.
This Colour is typically a neutral, but if you absolutely love soft turquoise or sage green, feels free to use it!
If you really have no idea where to begin with your main Colour, knowing a bit about Colour personality may help, or ask yourself these questions in this article.
Now choose two accent colours. These can be soft or bold, cool or warm, or one of each. Whatever you choose, you will want to make sure of two things.
First, that you love the colours. No matter how pretty the Colour scheme is, if you can’t imagine yourself living with these colours day in and day out for years, if they don’t fit your style or personality, they won’t work.
Second, that they balance the main Colour you chose in Step 1. For example, if you chose a cool gray as your dominant Colour, you may want to look to a warm Colour as one of your accents. If your dominant Colour is bold, you may want to keep these colours soft or neutrals. In the example above, I balanced my warm khaki and warm coral by choosing a cool periwinkle blue as my secondary accent Colour.
If you are struggling with decision making at this point, take a look at your closet or the furniture and decor you already have. This will tell you if you gravitate toward cool or warm colours, or if you really enjoy bold colours or tend toward neutrals.
Now you want to add a third layer to your Colour scheme, which will be varying shades of your two accent colours.
If you are more experienced with Colour choices, you could also add varying shades of your dominant Colour. For example, if your dominant Colour is on your walls, your sofa may be a lighter shade of this Colour and your rug a darker shade.
If this is a bit confusing to you, try adding a shade lighter and a shade darker than your accent Colour, like I did in the example above. This allows you more Colour choices without making the room look like it is overwhelmed with too much Colour.
However, don’t feel limited by only two different shades of your accent colours. When choosing decor pieces and fabrics for your room, this is a great place to use varying shades of your accent colours in patterns and textures. This will give your room a richness and depth, and will keep your room from becoming too matchy-matchy.
Don’t forget that natural fibers such as baskets and sisal or jute rugs, along with wood flooring and furniture, will add other “colours” to the room and give your space even greater depth and interest. Also, even the outdoors viewable through windows add further interest to a room, and lighting will modify the existing colours even further, creating a space that is ever changing throughout the day.
With all of this Colour action going on, you may be the only one that ever realizes your room, or even your entire home, only has three colours. Shhhh, it's our secret. Just let others think you are a Colour wizard!