Create your perfect colour scheme

Having trouble combining your favourite colours?

Consider your space

Use a collection of items and colour swatches to create a mood board.
Learn to create a mood board

Different colours work in different rooms, so the first step is to assess your space. If your room faces north and often feels cool, bright colours in deep, vivid hues will increase the light and make it feel warmer. If your room faces south, most colours look good – even dark, dramatic ones.

Think about the reason you use the room. Is it for eating, working, or sleeping? Use colour to create the mood you want to achieve. Cool, calm, muted colours such as pale green and watery blue promote calm, while vibrant, deep colours such as reds and purples will energise and stimulate.

Inspiration is all around

Nature is a wonderful source for colour combinations. Take a walk and go explore the great outdoors. Which landscapes make you feel most alive?

Take note of your most special home accessories. Have you got a cushion or bedspread that instantly adds excitement to any space? Select some colours from a favourite patterned accessory to find a colour scheme. Then include that accessory in your finished room for a coordinated, personal look.

Art can also inspire stunning colour schemes. Select a few key colours from a painting you love for a colour scheme that’s guaranteed to get the creative juices flowing.

Mood board magic

Once you’ve chosen your colours, collect paint swatches and fabric and wallpaper samples that have different shades of your chosen hues. Use a flat space or large piece of white cardboard as a backdrop to begin creating your scheme. Arrange and rearrange as much as you want. Take your time. Don’t forget to stand back and walk away. You’ll know when it’s right.

Try before you buy

Testers are a wonderful way to make sure the colour you love looks just as great on your walls as it does on your mood board. Paint different spots in different lights or hang a painted A4 piece of lining paper on different walls. This way you can see how the colours look under natural and artificial light and at different times of day.