Over the summer, we chatted about neutrals and how the poor things tend to get neglected when people talk about color theory. It turns out that they have some really interesting meanings, too, just like their bolder and brighter friends. (Remember when we learned that white is “the color of perfection?” Good times.) Since we’ve already taken care of the neutral department, I thought I’d make my way around the rest of the color wheel. I went on a hike at the arboretum yesterday and got an eye full of fall beauty, so this seemed like a good time to hit the warm half of the circle.
Let’s start with red, or as it always registers in my brain: DANGER ZONE. Ha. I’m partially kidding. Even before I started researching this post I knew red was aggressive, thanks to how stressed out I’d feel in my parents’ guest room. (They’ve started the red-removal process, don’t worry.) Red is a very stimulating color known for raising heart rates and blood pressure, and can make some people irritable. On the happier side of the coin, we all know it’s a symbol of love but it’s also an indicator of pioneering spirit. Fun! Red makes a great accent color in rooms that get a lot of natural light.
Orange, Hubsey’s favorite color, adds energy and warmth to a room and can stimulate creativity. More muted shades, like peach or salmon, are good in bathrooms because they flatter a lot of skin tones–which totally makes sense because we have to counteract the blue tinge from our walls with warm lightbulbs, lest we look like zombies in there. Fun fact: younger people respond more positively to orange than older folks.
Of the three we’re talking about today, yellow is my fave. Happy. Uplifting. Energizing. If you’re stuck about what color to pick for your entryway, yellow is a good call because it makes people feel welcome. Interestingly, it can also increase your focus and information recall–magic!–so keep it in mind the next time you paint your office or study spot for the kiddos.
Which of these warm colors is your favorite? (Team Yellow.) Do you think these common associations are accurate? Would you add anything else? Who else gets freaked out by too much red?