Wednesday, November 2, 2011

White Room Decorating Idea

Colour psychology is the science behind how we feel in different coloured environments. Green and blue will make us relaxed, red and oranges fire us up and make good colours for rooms where conversation needs to be lively, yellow makes us happy or quite strangely, very argumentative. But what does white mean?

White is pure, it is clean and crisp, it can be cold but it can also be very comforting. It all depends on what goes with it- which is why people choose it, because they think it goes with everything. But does it?

Ill-thought-through white rooms will look bland, or clinical - or worse still - both. However, there are rules that help make the most of white walls and by using them, white will be at home in any house, be it contemporary, cosy cottage or period.

The right white
There are many different white paints to choose from and while you may be forgiven for thinking this is just a cruel marketing ploy, there is actually a reason. Each white will look different depending on whatever else it is being used with. Some period whites are positively grey but they will look white against other sludgy type colours. A pure white will look beautiful in a south-facing room but use it in a north facing room and it will feel cold and stark. So you see it is important to choose the right white.

White is frequently used to enlarge the feeling of a room as the eye cannot see the boundaries quite so clearly so the room appears larger. In addition, white has such good reflective qualities that it will bounce the light around, enlarging the room further. This ability to reflect will also bounce back any other colours in the room and might even distort your vision of them. For example, a red feature wall in an otherwise white room will give the white walls a pink glow.

Reflection is a wonderful characteristic in a white room and can be enhanced using mirrors and mirrored furniture, gloss painted ceilings, mother of pearl in small details or crystals in grand lighting displays. The distortion that reflection creates adds a new level of interest and this is one of the keys to successful decoration.

Texture is another way of bringing attention to the right places. A white painted brick wall is far more interesting than a smooth white surface. Add panelling or beading to a plain white cupboard or door and it will immediately gain new character. Texture within the room is also vital. White walls, white curtains and white loose covered furniture will look dull without the complexities of woollen fabrics, hand tufted rugs, Mongolian fur cushions, intricately carved wood panels, shiny wooden floor boards or antiqued chairs and tabletops. All in glorious white.

White plus one
White rooms are very rarely devoid of colour altogether and are very successful when combined with one other colour. Think blue and white like Delftware, or the red and white of a Toile de Jouy, yellow and white has memories of the 60s and black used with white is a classic combination, giving a very sophisticated look to a room - imagine checked black and white floors or better still the stunning styles from the Art Deco period.

Brightly coloured furniture will pop out of a white setting. It could be a single piece with smaller accessories in the same colour to help the eye travel around the room. An Eames desk in primary colours perhaps, with a vase in red, or a bright yellow rug.

The final word goes on the final touches and it is here that a white room can really benefit. Brightly coloured accessories will always bring a white room to life, from red and blue canvas floor cushions to cow hide rugs, a framed electric blue butterfly to a freshly cut bouquet of flowers that can be changed weekly to reflect the changing season and how you feel.

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