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Color schemes
How to choose one

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Selecting color schemes
 by Jeanette Joy Fisher

Choosing a color scheme for a room can be a daunting task at times, especially if nothing about the room initially jumps out at you. If you find yourself without a particular color preference for a room, you might begin by picking color combinations that are inspired by a favorite fabric pattern. Patterns usually have a group of complimentary colors, and using variations within the same group of colors throughout the house will lend your entire home a sense of harmony.

Another method for selecting a color scheme when you have no real preference is to start with the colors you already have in the flooring and on other surfaces that aren't going to be replaced. Ignore any color that you really dislike; in this case, everything doesn't have to match.

Go to your local paint store and find paint chip cards to match your colors. Then cut out the color samples and secure them into a personal loose-leaf notebook. But remember: paint chips aren't big enough to give an accurate picture of how a color will feel under specific lighting conditions, so you may need a larger sample before you make your final selection. The artificial lighting in paint stores also affects the appearance of color chips, and colors generally appear darker when seen on big expanses of walls compared to paint chips, so be sure to check your samples in the room and under the lighting conditions where your plan to use that color.

Balance the depth, darkness, and intensity of colors, mix cool and warm colors, and add enough diversity to avoid monotony in your color scheme. Adding variety to your color combinations will support your desired emotional and seasonal needs. You can change color emphasis with the changing seasons by varying a room’s accessories and lighting.

Bringing Exterior Colors Inside

Blending your home’s exterior colors with the interior ones will make the transition from outside to inside feel comfortable and natural. The welcoming color of your front door should be brought into the home through at least two small details or areas, to create balance and harmony. That doesn't mean the colors should match exactly. In fact, you don't want your colors to shout out their presence. The transition from outside to inside should be subtle, providing emotional support and creating a welcome feeling of balance.

Whatever colors you ultimately choose, remember that harmonizing those colors throughout the entire home is a combination of science and art. The key to success is in small doses of repetition, and adding touches of Design Psychology to the emotional undercurrents of color will assure a joyful home.

(c) Copyright 2004, Jeanette J. Fisher. All rights reserved.

Professor Jeanette Fisher, author of Doghouse to Dollhouse for Dollars, Joy to the Home, and other books teaches Real Estate Investing and Design Psychology. For more articles, tips, reports, newsletters, and sales flyer template, see http://www.doghousetodollhousefordollars.com/pages/5/index.htm

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