Color schemes are applied when picking paints,fabrics, and furnishings for your home, and in so many everyday things. For example, how you choose to coordinate your clothing, ( a shirt with a tie, a skirt with a blouse) your eye shadow colors, even when cooking, adding that touch of green or orange to the plate for a more palatable entreé. Then in your home, coordinating carpet, fabrics and wall colors! You are all scheming when doing these everyday things.
When I work with clients on a one room project, I like to set a color scheme for the room, placing the colors of the existing furniture and rugs from that room on a palette. You can do this by taping or glueing paint chips (from the paint store) on a paper. Then add colors that accent what is existing in that room, until you find the right combination. When looking at trying to give the entire house a fresh look, paint is the quickest and easiest way to accomplish this. This same exercise works; take colors from each room on one palette and look at how they work together to be sure they have a harmonious feeling; no clashing colors. This is one way to come up with a feeling of continuity in your home, where one room can flow into the other.
As you know, I like Ben Moore paints, and they as a company have taken a step to making it easier to choose paint colors for your home. Their web site is a great source, plus they partnered with Pottery Barn to create a palette that works best with the fabrics and lifestyle themes that are offered in their collection. Pottery Barn makes note of these colors in their catalog and you can even order a mini paint deck for color reference. Ethan Allen showrooms also make reference in their vignettes to the Benjanim Moore color that their designer chose to best coordinate with the fabrics and furniture selection in each display. It is usually posted on the wall at the entrance to the display room. The nice thing about this is when you are browsing these locations, you can see how paint colors look on a wall, in a large scale ( as opposed to the tiny paint chips that you get at the store), and it helps you 'picture' how it can look in your home.
There are many thoughts on color – what color to use? Will a dark color make a room warmer? Will it make the room look smaller? There are no wrong answers here (ok, maybe there are some wrong answers... ) , but there are so many schools of thought – don't be afraid to try a color on a wall. If you fear it will be too strong, pick one accent wall to use the 'scary color', and use a softer tone ( as you learned from an earlier post, a tint of that color - for a monochromatic effect) of that same color on the other walls, to coordinate with it. You may just surprise yourself!