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Choosing paint colours

Published:Friday | December 12, 2014 | 11:32 PM

Red, for example, is viewed as an exciting, dramatic and rich colour. Think of the associations with the words "red carpet treatment." Red also is passionate. Think of "The Lady in Red." And it stimulates the appetite. Think of your favorite Italian restaurant.

The darker shades of red such as burgundy and maroon have a rich and stately feeling about them. Think of the Victorian era. A front door painted burgundy is dramatic and inviting.

Here are some of the other colour's and their associations:


Orange gives off a cheerful aura. It is bold and exciting, friendly and informal. The dark, muted version of orange is rust. Rust colour's in the living room or family room are inviting and give a feeling of casualness.


Yellow is the most visible colour. That's why you see so many street signs in yellow. Pastel yellows are happy without being overpowering and make for a nice, cheerful backdrop when the room's walls are painted in this hue. Gold tones create an atmosphere of richness or can be construed as antique, such as in Colonial days where every room had a touch of gold.

Blue has a universal appeal because it reminds us of blue skies and deep blue oceans. There's a feeling of serenity and openness with blue. There is also a feeling of power with blue. Think of a navy suit on an executive. Blue works well in bedrooms and on the exterior of a house and comes across crisp and clean if trimmed with white.


Green is nature's favorite colour. Green is very soothing to many people, perhaps because of its association with nature. Hunter green is associated with country life. Jade greens remind us of jewels and precious stones. Green works well in a dining room and can actually be used in any room in the house. It is easy on the eyes.


Violet reminds us of royalty and wealth. Purple and violets are luxurious colours. Many young females are attracted to this colour and love to have their bedrooms decorated in a violet motif. Too much purple can be overwhelming, but accents of this colour do much to punch up a room.


Brown also is a colour associated with nature. It is relaxing and easy to live with. Red-browns are more formal and work well in great rooms or living rooms. The lighter hues such as tan and beige work well with most colour schemes to bring about a base that unifies.

White symbolises freshness, purity and cleanliness. It happens to be a favorite colour for walls. Off white and tinted white walls afford a great canvas for any other colour combination motif.


Black is authoritative. It conveys sophistication. It provides a neutral counterpoint to any other colour you might choose to couple it with. Too much black can be depressing. But when blended with other colour's, it makes for a dramatic statement in any room.


Gray is elegant. Since it is a neutral, it also blends well with other colour's. Grey and blue give a clean, no-fuss look. Grey trimmed with white is classy for both interior and exterior paint.