Colour Wheel – A Powerful Tool In Design

(Today I want to talk about a basic tool that can help you with creating a perfect colour combinations in your interiors- Invented in 1666 by Sir Isaak Newton colour wheel.

This circular diagram of colours presents a logically arranged sequence of pure hues. The colour wheel is designed so that virtually any colours we pick from it will look good together. Over the years, many variations of the basic design have been made, but the most common version is a wheel of 12 colours based on the RYB (or artistic) colour model. 

 

colourwheel

The basic design colour wheel (pic. Gosha Galuszka)

Traditionally, there are a number of colour combinations that are considered especially pleasing to the eye. These are called colour harmonies or colour chords and they consist of two or more hues with a fixed relation in the colour wheel.

Based on colour wheel we can define three groups of colours:

  • Primary Colours: red, yellow and blue. They cannot be made from any other colours
  • Secondary Colours: green, orange and purple. These colours are formed by mixing the primary colours.
  • Tertiary Colours: yellow-orange, red-orange, red-purple, blue-purple, blue-green, yellow-green. They are achieved by mixing a primary and secondary pigment.

 

The colour circle can be divided into warm and cool colours.

Warm colours are vivid and energetic, and tend to advance in space.

Cool colours give an impression of calm, and create a soothing impression.

White and black are the absence of chroma and  with gray are considered to be neutral.

There are three aspects of colour: a tint, shade and tone. If a colour is made lighter by adding white, the result is called a tint. If black is added, the darker version is called a shade. And if grey is added, the result is a different tone

Based on the colour wheel we can create colour schemes that will make our space beautiful and interesting. Today I will talk about two of them: complementary and analogous.

 

contrasting colours

Perfect example of complementary colour scheme (pic. Stocksnap.io)

Complementary colour scheme
Colours that are opposite each other on the colour wheel are called complementary colors (example: red and green).

The high contrast of complementary colour scheme creates a vibrant look especially when used at full saturation. This colour scheme must be managed well so it is not overwhelming.

Complementary colour schemes are tricky to use in large doses, but work well when you want something to stand out. When creating complementary colour scheme it is better not to use two strong colours together. I would advise to use lighter tint on the wall and use stronger second colour for accents for example.

 

contrast

Nature is the greatest designer- complementary colour scheme (pic. Stocksnap.io)

 

Analogous colour schemes use hues that sit next to each other on the colour wheel. They usually match well and create calm and pleasant designs.

Analogous colour schemes are often found in nature and are harmonious and nice to the eye. When choosing an analogous colour scheme we have to make sure that we have enough contrast. It is better to choose one colour to dominate, a second to support. The third colour is used (along with black, white or grey) as an accent.

 

analogous

Another example from nature- Analogous colour scheme: blue-green-yellow (Pic. Stocksnap.io)

The colour wheel is a tool that can make your life easier when decorating your space. Complementary colour scheme is the easiest way to create visual impact in interior but it is important not to use two strong hues together- otherwise it can be overwhelming. Analogous colour scheme creates more harmonious feel and if you keep the perfect ratio it will look interesting too.  These were just two examples how to create perfect room using colours. Next time I will give you examples of few more colour schemes based on the colour wheel so please follow my blog and leave me the comments below. And if you decided on the colours I recommend my post Choosing The Paint Colour. How To Do It Right? which will give you few practical tips too.

Thank you for reading,

Gosha

 

 

 

 

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8 thoughts on “Colour Wheel – A Powerful Tool In Design

  1. I learn something new every time I read your posts! 😀 My boyfriend and I recently bought a condo (in its pre-building phase) back in May and I am so excited to start decorating. I know for sure your posts will be helpful.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s very simple you use it to create colour schemes. For example if you want to match accents for your room you take the opposite colour on the colour wheel… For the blue it would be orange or yellow-orange, for red-green etc. In analogous colour scheme it will be 3 colour beside like green-blue-yellow

      Like

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