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The emotive effects of colour in interior design

The emotive effects of colour in interior design

If you loved our post on the psychology of cosy, you might be interested to hear more about the way colour choices affect the look and feel of your home. A sofa can take up a lot of space in the home, physically and emotionally, so it makes sense to ensure you're choosing the right colour for you.

Colour is highly emotive and can have a significant impact on the way we feel. So, once you’ve decided on the kind of atmosphere you want to create in a room, check out our guide to see which colour group can help you achieve this.

Warm colours

Red, orange and yellow are all known as warm colours and can be found in the ‘red’ section of the colour spectrum. Warm colours can evoke quite a few different emotions, including lovely feelings of warmth, comfort and romance but also feelings of anger and hostility.

TIP: Yellow is commonly thought of as a cheery, bright and happy colour, but researchers have found that babies cry more often when placed in yellow rooms, so avoid using this colour in your nursery or children’s bedroom.

Cool colour

Blue, purple and green are known as the cooler colours and these are found on the ‘blue’ section of the colour spectrum. Typically, these colours will evoke feelings of calmness and clarity, but they can also be associated with sadness - think Picasso during his ‘blue period’.

TIP: Despite blue’s associations with sadness, research has found that those who work in a room painted blue tend to be more productive, so we recommend adding this colour to your home office.

Barnet accent armchair dusky velvet dark blue


White often symbolises purity and serenity, so it’s no wonder that this colour is well known for evoking a sense of calm. White can be paired with any other colour, so it’s always been a go-to versatile colour in home decor.

TIP: We commonly associate white with cleanliness, so it’s a great colour choice for rooms that you naturally associate with cleanliness, like bathrooms and utility rooms.

La Jola corner sofa Mixt Linen White


Black is unique as it can absorb all of the colours of the colour spectrum. Black is typically associated with being bold, powerful and sophisticated, but it can also evoke a feeling of dread and is also associated with death and mourning.

TIP: according to the art of Feng Shui, when used sparingly, black has a grounding effect on your environment and can be used to harmonise a space. Try placing black accessories around your home to achieve a sense of flow and connection to the surrounding world.

fondant 3 seater sofa tip dyed graphite leather


Personal preference

Remember, every individual responds differently to different colours. How a colour makes you feel can just come down to personal preference, but culture also has a big impact. For example, white symbolises purity and innocence in Western culture, whereas it’s a symbol of mourning and grief in many Eastern countries.

When it comes to choosing the right colours for your home, focus on how a colour makes you feel. What catches your attention when you’re flicking through a magazine or browsing through a store? Also, it can help to look for cues in your wider environment, such as what colour clothing do you like to wear and what colour is the car you drive.

If you need any help choosing the perfect colour for your dream sofa, our Sofa Masters are available to help on 0800 599 9318.