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Using the Color Wheel in Decorating

With so many different colors available, it can sometimes be difficult to choose the right ones for your project. Using color theory is the basic technique for creating schemes that achieve color harmony that is pleasing to the eyes. Using the color wheel and combining it with color theory can help you in a variety of design applications, such as choosing fabric and curtains, curtains and paint based on a group of colors on the color wheel.

Complementary colors

Complementary Colors

Complementary colors are any two directly opposite each other on the color wheel, such as red and green and orange and blue. By using complementary colors you can create maximum contrast with a vibrant look and maximum stability.


Split complementary colors

Split Complementary

The split-complementary color scheme uses the two colors adjacent to its complement. Although it has the same strong visual contrast as the complementary color scheme it produces less tension. An example is using blue, light orange and yellow together.


Triadic colors

Triadic Color Scheme

A triadic color scheme uses three colors that are evenly spaced around the color wheel, which tend to be vibrant when used together. To do this you would choose a color, then skip three colors to get your next choice, then skip three more to get your third. When using the triadic color scheme, keep colors balanced by choosing one dominant color and using the other two for accent.


Rectangle color scheme

Rectangle Color Scheme

The rectangle, or tetradic, color scheme, uses four colors arranged into two complementary pairs, allowing for various color variations, which produces a rich color scheme. Choose two complementary colors, such as blue and yellow, then skip over one color and find its complimentary color. Paying attention to the balance between warm (red, orange) and cool (light blue, yellow) colors in your design is also important.


Square color scheme

Square Color Scheme

This color scheme is similar to the rectangle, except that all four colors are spaced evenly around the color wheel. This is done by choosing two complementary colors, then skipping over two colors to get a third color, and then finding its complimentary color. Like the rectangle color scheme, the balance between warm and cool colors is also important.



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