Who says avoid clashing colours?

Many people avoid using bright colours as they worry it won’t work. Well, everyone’s got an opinion, but there’s only one that matters: yours. If it works for you, then it works.

But if you need a little help with colour choice, or a little reassurance that your colours will look stunning together, then the colour wheel is your friend.

What is the colour wheel?

The colour wheel is the source of theory that interior designers and fashion stylists use to choose winning colour combinations. It shows at a glance what colours can be used together for effect based on where they sit in relation to each other. Colours opposite each other on the wheel are complementary (and are often use in bright interior schemes together). For example purple and yellow are opposite each other, as are blue and orange. These combinations are what people often call a colour clash, as they are bright, but they DO go together and create a great scheme.

Here is a great example of purple and yellow working together in an eclectic vintage style scheme from @cath_gillingham: 

colour clash 3

So what won’t work?

Technically a colour clash is not a particular colour against another colour, its differing shades of colours that work less well together. For instance a bright, clear yellow will work well with a strong purple, but less well with a warm and muted purple as the tones will be different. So if you are going bright, go all in – it will look fantastic!

Bright combinations that work well together

Colours beside each other on the colour wheel (analogous) give a feeling of harmony together, such as a combination of greens and blues, or an autumn scheme combining reds, oranges and yellows. Colours opposite each other that really pop together are blue with orange or yellow, or deep green with some pink accents. Below, @oxfordone has combined analogous red, orange and yellow with complementary blue AND thrown in some white neutral and pattern for effect! A great scheme that oozes style. 

colour clash 1

Pairing brights with neutrals

If you prefer to go more subtle with your brights, consider pairing a few bright accents against a neutral backdrop. White and grey tones are the perfect backdrops for colour. Ever wondered why art galleries are often white? Grey is unique in that it doesn’t have its own colour personality and therefore allows other colours to be ‘seen’.  Here is an example of a more subtle use of bright colours from @stellaandthestars: 

colour clash 2

So whether you love brights, darks, neutrals or all of them in one space, the main thing to take from all this is to #followyourtrend. If you like it, then it works for your home.

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