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Home decor tips: Energising colours to enliven the interiors

ByZarafshan Shiraz, Delhi
Feb 09, 2023 08:03 AM IST

Colours are a design element that takes centre stage in the interiors of any space. A contrast between hues or play with accent tones can dedicate the overall ambience of a room. Here are tips by home decor experts on how to use energising colours to enliven the interiors

Design elements such as texture, scale, light and colour are crucial in space-making and together, these elements testify that the sum of parts is greater than the whole to make up the experience of any space yet, colours occupy a unique place amongst all the design elements, as it is often seen even before a person is completely in the space. The explosion of design platforms and media reveals a profound interest in curating immersive spaces that have altered the aesthetic choices of their audience and one such element takes centre stage in the interiors of any space - colour.

Home decor tips: Energising colours to enliven the interiors (Photo by Spacejoy on Unsplash)

A contrast between hues or play with accent tones can dedicate the overall ambience of a room. Building typologies ranging from residences to schools use colours in varied ways to curate distinct experiences with different combinations and intensities of colours to impart the desired effects and every building typology hosts a different set of functions thus, requires different strategies when it comes to colour.

In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Akanksha Gupta, Partner at Vijay Gupta Architects, advised, “While selecting the colour palette for a classroom, one can use softer and neutral tones, facilitating the transition to other shades. This helps achieve a balance, circumventing the dominance of any one particular colour. In a healthcare space, common areas and recovery rooms demand varying degrees of stimulation. Even though both spaces are preferred in subtle tones, we ensure that they don’t become dull or monotonous for the patients, doctors or even for visitors.”

As a designer, when curating the visible spectrum of a space, she insisted, “It is essential to foresee how each colour is introduced. The chosen combination of colours translates into a mood that affects the end-users. For example, colours in a cafe would intend to convey a more energetic vibe, while a classroom would use colours that bring in focus and avoid distractions. Selective and bold use of colour as accents also acts as a visual stimuli in a space. Like a pop of colour in a classroom would uplift the spirit of the space and enliven the environment of the room for students. It is important to understand that the choice of colour schemes stems from the intent and use of the space, an overlay with the experience, and level of stimulation that a designer wishes to grant its users. While colours are crucial in design, their absence is also a conscious choice.”

Shalini Chandrashekar, Principal and Director at Taliesyn, opined, “Recently, the growing trend of pastels and earthy tones in combination with vernacular materials has heightened the limelight on designers, given their reach to intriguing pieces. One must understand the basis of colours – colour theory – is science and art that explains how we perceive, blend or contrast colour tones. The subliminal character of colour aids in communicating underlining messages of culture, emotion, ambience and structure. Combinations and contrasts of colour tones can have a spectrum of effects on emotion and interiors - yellow hues not only impart an energising appeal but also renders earthy tones into the interiors.”

She highlighted, “Yellow tones have been integral to vernacular designs for centuries, carrying a vintage aesthetic. When dark wood is paired with warm yellow, there is an instant transformation of the space, being a primary colour; combinations with secondary and tertiary colours are easier. For instance, yellow, along with burgundy, green or brown tones, instantly brightens up a corner, proving its versatile nature. Tracing back to our roots, earthy hues have revolutionised the use of colours in interior design. One such shade is terracotta, an earthy tone that brings a rustic appeal to contemporary and modern designs. Terracotta can be altered to meet the requirement depending on the application and finish. Textured matt walls in earthy tones exude drama and rawness. Moreover, terracotta paired with neutral furnishings can bring the required balance.”

She suggested, “While designing any interior space, understanding the behaviour of colour in combination with other tones is vital. Each colour can be further altered by adding or reducing white; hence achieving the right tone of the colour can also transform the given interiors. Discovering the relativity of colour originates by observing the interactions between different hues. Our perception of colour can vary significantly depending on the relationship between values, saturations, and the warmth or coolness of the accompanying colours.”

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