It used to be that choosing color was limited to the eight colors in the original classic box of crayons. Then, as we grew in sophistication, we upgraded to the box of 24, and ultimately (at least back in the day) to the ultimate box of 64 colors (with a built in sharpener!).

When it comes to color for home design projects, color isn’t so simple anymore. Many factors go into choosing the right shade: lighting, environment, use of the space.

To begin, draw inspiration wherever you find it – Pinterest, magazines, blogs, showrooms, treasures from your travels, or objects that make you smile.

For starters, consider the use of the room. If it is a bedroom, it might be wise to lean toward serene colors, but a more formal space might require deeper, more intense color.

Light is another key factor. Natural light gives the best look at a color, and different kinds of artificial light adjust color warmer or cooler depending on the type. Assessing a potential color with natural light, if possible, across the entire day helps ensure that the color won’t be too pale in the bright light of day or far too dark in the evening.

Once the color selection has been narrowed to just a few, there really is no better way to finalize the decision than by painting a swatch of each on the wall, and living with it for a couple of weeks.

Understanding the different vocabulary related to color makes it easier to communicate about it. This list from our friends at HGTV simplifies matters:

  • Hue is what we call a color. Red is the hue; blue is the hue.
  • The value of the hue is how light or dark it is.
  • Saturation refers to how dominant the hue is. As we go from red to pink, the red hue becomes less dominant.
  • Intensity is the brilliance of the color. The pure colors such as red are more intense than the combined colors such as yellow-green. A stronger intense color usually has a more dominant hue.

Source: HGTV