Colour and your mood

Colour and your mood

How decorators use colour to create ‘looks’ or ‘moods’.

colour and your mood

The best decorators have an innate ‘colour sensitivity’. They understand the power of colour and how it affects us. For instance, if we look at the colour spectrum, without branching into tints and shades of the colours, then the following is quite startling:


Red is the colour with the shortest wavelength and therefore objects in red appear to be close to us and gain our attention. It also increases the heart rate, and is stimulating and aggressive. It’s the colour of excitement, love and liveliness. Red in a room’s colour scheme is lively and warm.


Orange is also stimulating but has an emotional response, rather than the physical response of red. It can be warm and comforting, symbolising food and security. It’s believed to increase energy levels. It can also look a little frivolous if overused.


Yellow is the colour most misused and abused, but the correct yellow can be expansive and welcoming. The colour symbolises confidence, optimism, friendliness and creativity. Yellow is supposed to aid concentration and is said to speed up metabolism.


Green is the colour that doesn’t require our eyes to adjust in any way. It’s in the middle of the colour spectrum and is often touted as being the ‘perfect’ colour for decor. Green is all around us in nature, and is perceived to be a colour of abundance and harmony. It’s reassuring and balancing, and encourages relaxation. Dark green is perceived as masculine and stabilising.


Blue is the most popular colour in the world. It symbolises calm, trust and logic. It’s the colour of the mind – strong blues are mentally stimulating whereas lighter blues are calming and soothing. Blue encourages the body to produce calming chemicals and as such is often used in bedrooms and living rooms.



Purple is the colour of royalty – rare and expensive purple dyes were used for centuries on the garments of kings and queens. Today it’s the colour of luxury and affluence. It’s a dramatic colour that looks sophisticated.


Brown is the colour of the earth. It’s a positive yet serious colour. It’s as strong as black, but softer and warmer. Dark brown is warm, rich, steadying and symbolises reliability. Lighter browns are restful and an attractive background to other colours.


Black spells sophistication and glamour. It’s the colour of power and authority, and isn’t strictly a colour but all the colours absorbed. Creating an impression of seriousness and efficiency, it can’t be ignored.


Grey is the colour of neutrality. The correct grey can be restful and calming, but the incorrect grey can be dampening. Alongside other colours it tends to highlight and complement.


White is strictly not a colour but rather the absence of reflection. It symbolises purity and clarity. Clean and simple, it can also be very sophisticated as it gives us a heightened perception of space. In conjunction with bright colours it tends to look garish, yet is most effective when used as a single colour with only textures to differentiate tones.

The team at Linen Drawer believe in the positive power of colour and recognise the fact that it plays an important role in how we work, feel, eat and play. Their ranges of towels and throws, embellishments on their bedding and tabling, all reflect the latest colour trends. Visit for more info.

Joni van der Merwe

About Joni van der Merwe

Digital editor I’m getting married in 2018 and I think it’s the perfect time to focus on my relationship with not only my fiance but my friends, family and colleagues too. I want to nurture and cherish the people I love by being more understanding and present in their lives.

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