The rules for combining colors in interior design – everything you need to know


The choice of colors for the rooms seems to be a matter of fact. However, when it comes down to it, we cannot decide on the shade that will best suit our needs. In order to play with different shades, you need to know about them properly. Then you can let your imagination run wild and match the color palette to your needs.

It’s worth knowing that there are over 150 color names known. They are created by combining the basic colors, that is:
– red,
– blue,
– yellow.

In the 17th century, a special color wheel was created (creator: Isaac Newton), on which there are 12 colors:
– 3 primary – red, blue, yellow,
– 3 derivatives – purple, orange, green,
– six third-order colors – colors created after combination of derived and primary colors.

RAL and Pantone system – model colors

RAL – colors according to the German institute

It is the most commonly used system that allows to classify all colors used in interior design projects. It first appeared in 1927 and consisted of 40 colors. It has evolved over the years and now has over 1,600 described colors.

RAL templates are often used by manufacturers of paints, varnishes and self-adhesive films.

Rules for combining colors: contrast or similarity

The solution that allows to obtain an interesting effect in the interior is a contrasting combination of colors. It allows you to enhance or emphasize a given space in a room. There is only one rule here – dark colors attract more attention than light ones. For example: one wall can be painted navy blue and the rest blue.

You will also be good at combining monochrome colors, i.e. using the same color in the room, but with different brightness and saturation. This solution allows for a uniform arrangement.

It is also worth remembering a few other basic rules:
– the leitmotif in a room should always be one color that appears on all patterns and accessories,
– patterns used in the room should be based on the same tone,
– combinations of dominant and complementary colors look good in the interior.

The optical impression that you will achieve thanks to the skillful combination of colors

If you want…

Optically enlarge the room, apply bright colors to the walls, and then the space will seem much larger. It would be good if as much natural light as possible fell into the room.

If you want…

Make the room smaller and lower, use darker shades such as navy blue, black or burgundy.

If you want…

Bring a cozy atmosphere to the interior, use the natural color of the wood. This is enough to enjoy a cozy space.

If you want…

To cool the interior, use white, blue or gray.

Cool, neutral or warm interior? What effect do you want to get?

You will get a cool, calm and at the same time very spacious space if you use a blue color in the interior. This color is so universal that it will work in virtually any room, but it is most often chosen for bathrooms and children’s rooms. Gray also works well as a cool color. However, they should not be brought into the bedroom, which is to be a cozy place, unless you use the following solution:
– combine cold and warm shades of gray, use accessories in white, and navy blue accents (e.g. one pillow) can break the monotony.

Neutral arrangements can be very interesting, especially if gray and beige shades are broken with, for example, red accessories. There doesn’t have to be a lot of them, just a few are enough to achieve an interesting effect.

Orange, shades of yellow, red are the colors that will bring a pleasant, warm atmosphere to your interior. Of course, you have to remember that red should not dominate any space because of its energetic nature. It is enough to paint one wall with it or use several accessories in this color. The perfect color for a youth room will be orange created from a combination of red and yellow. An energetic color, encouraging to play and positively mood to life, which is exactly what young people should be like.

If you want to treat yourself to a very good feeling, bring yellow to the interior. Good mood every day guaranteed.