3 Easy Steps For Choosing A Color Scheme

We tend to think having more choices makes it easier to get what we want. So, having more colors to choose from to create your design is a good thing, right?  Well, the truth is, having too many choices can freeze us right in our steps. {This is called the Paradox of Choice and you read about it here and watch here}.


Never fear, with the a few tips and tricks in hand, you can turn the color world into your oyster (or Pearl, see #30).

Easy Steps for Choosing Your Color Scheme:

1. Create a Color Portfolio.

Here are a few suggestions on building a color portfolio:

     a. See what others have done, sites like Pinterest and Houzz are chock full of images of color palettes in use in a wide variety of settings.

Some retailers offer a gallery of designs other customers have commissioned. You can find my old customer galleries here, here and here to help you get some color inspiration.

Customer Galleries are a great place to get inspiration for your own color scheme.

     b. Find your inspiration while you are out and about. Our cell phone cameras provide a quick and easy way to create our own color catalog. While you are on your daily routine snap shots of the colors that inspire you. You don't even have to have a project in mind - in fact it's best to start your catalog before you need it so you don't feel pressured to build your catalog but can instead keep it to what truly inspires you.
I take pictures of flowers when I go out for a run. The pink and yellow of this flower
has become color inspiration for my daughter's bedroom restyling.

     c. Are you looking to add color to a specific room in your home? Take photos of the major elements in the room that you like. Then look at those images through your phone and take note of which colors are calling you.
Image Source: Dulux.Com Site: http://www.dulux.com.au/ 

     d. Tip C also works if you are trying to create a gift for an engaged couple or expectant parents. Pop over to their registry and look at their selections. What are the primary and complimentary colors in their linens and other major decor items? You can grab those graphics right from the website and build a mini-portfolio.
Customer image used to creating a custom pillow.
We grabbed those plums and ran with it.
Photo: Sears Site:http://www.sears.com/regulator/p-SP102A18648S6740916706

2. Identify the Colors That Appear Repeatedly Your Portfolio

You've done the hard part! Now, you'll review your color portfolio and choose 2-3 major and accent colors that are predominate in your portfolio. These will be the ones that keep showing up over and over again.

If you are having a hard time narrowing down too tightly, choose 2-3 additional colors as back up options. In the photo above, we selected the plums and pale lilacs and built up our palette.

Lavender, Tulip and Violet threads
really compliment this baby nursery's core palette.

3. Go Shopping!

You've got your palette, now it's time to match it all up. You're ready to bring your color selections with you to your retailer and start building your design!

I hope this helped you break out of the Color Paradox of Choice prison you've been locked in.

If you have an color selection tips, your fellow readers and I would love to hear them!

Please share in the comments below!