True Colours: The Inspiring Coloursby Rose-Marie Hillier on 11/03/2022
Confident yellow and meditative purple are colours that are rich in history, and it is no wonder – these colours inspire in us sheer joy while promoting wisdom and intellect.
So if you want to feel inspired, enlightened and uplifted then indulge your inner-self with a dose of yellow or purple.
Primary yellow is a social colour
and a go-to favourite for enhancing the luminosity of a light-filled room
or for infusing small spaces with brightness and warmth
Associated with happiness, intellect and energy, nearly everyone loves yellow, though not every shade of yellow is appealing – under artificial lighting, certain shades of yellow are positively nauseating. Nonetheless, there are so many glorious variations – from corn, butter, egg-yolk, lemon, or citrus to gold, canary, willow, sand, sunshine, honey and buttercup; there is plenty of scope for customisation.
Purple has pomp and circumstance! After all, it has been associated with royalty (and magic!) for centuries, and is endowed with the energy to inspire wisdom, power and ambition. Just think about the variations of this regal colour – there is mauve, violet, lavender, musk, plum, blackcurrant, aubergine, amethyst, iris, Imperial purple, grape, blackberry and heather; you are spoilt for choice within this emotive palette.
The Emotional Connection…
Pure bright yellow is an attention-getter, especially when placed against black; the very reason that those infamous New York taxis are painted in those colours. It brings energy to a room and you can’t help be inspired and uplifted because of this. However, yellow is also an unstable colour and can have a disturbing effect if over-used; on its own, bright yellow is bad news for a bedroom, as it keeps our minds switched on. Purple on the other hand is a complex colour. Being a mix of blue and red, take it too blue and it can evoke a gloomy, sad feeling while the paler tones like mauve inspire nostalgia and romantic feelings.
As a feature…
With either of these colours, just remember that a little goes a long way. Combine pale lemon or the more golden yellows with sky or royal blue; blue provides the contrast needed to temper the yellow. Dull yellows, like mustard, can induce a feeling of sickness and jealousy (this theory goes way back in history).
Purple is actually the colour of divine knowledge and higher learning, so it’s ideal for ‘quieter’ spaces; you might want to consider this colour when planning your child’s study space or a computer nook. For a feature wall in a living room, try the deeper tones, such as blackberry, plum and aubergine. If you’re on the fence about violet or royal purple, consider using a light hue like lavender (which is more blue-based than red, giving you the energy without the intensity.
As a highlight…
Rather than paint an entire room yellow, consider adding this colour in various degrees with printed fabrics and artworks. These can work to lift the mood, although you do need to be careful about the base colour you are putting these with. Too cream, and it will once again have a queasy effect; too warm and they will clash. Keep your base colour with a barely-there hint of blue or green to ensure the yellow packs a happy punch.
Royal purple can be a pretty intense colour, but it can be an excellent choice in a bedroom, and it’s a beautiful choice for bedlinen, especially combined with reds and pinks. Not surprisingly, 75 per cent of pre-adolescent girls prefer purple to all other colours. Because it is already a complex colour, it is not as difficult to combine with a base colour, but steer clear of other shades that have hints of contrasting red or pink.
The True Colours Series… In this series, we are exploring the possibilities of using colour in your home to shape your family’s mood and complement your lifestyle, whether you wish to Stimulate, to Inspire, to Calm, Balance, Comfort or Stabilise. For each mood group, we reveal how colour can be used as a highlight, as an exciting feature, to dominate and define a family or child’s space or in subtle doses as accents.
The True Colours Challenge… We also want you to become part of our True Colours project by challenging you to become your own colour consultant, creating your own personalised Mood Boards, as inspired by each True Colours feature. These will become part of a competition, and a shortlist of Mood Boards will then be commented on by interior experts before being voted on by MyLittleStyleFile users. The creator of each winning Mood Board will then receive a selection of the items featured to help transform their Mood Board into a real-life family or children’s room…..
IN AUGUST The Calming Colours: Blue and Green