Neutral and monochromatic color schemes are all the rage in interior design, but that doesn’t mean that bright colors are off the table. In fact, a few subtle pops of color can instantly transform a simple modern space into something bold and evocative.
If you want to make the biggest splash with your colorful accents, it’s best–albeit not a requirement–to start with a neutral color scheme. White and neutral-hued walls not only create the illusion of space, but they also provide a clean canvas that complements colorful accessories and flourishes. This simple but profound concept has been a staple of mid-century modern design for generations, and it still holds up today.
- Accessorize With Bright Colors
Pastel colors like bright greens, yellows, and pinks can make an instant and lasting impression. The trick is to use them sparingly so they don’t overwhelm your space. Consider household items like lamps, coffee tables, or furniture essentials. These accessories are simple to incorporate into your home, but they have the power to turn a dull space into something bright, modern, and sophisticated.
Brightly colored artwork also works well and can even add a sense of class to your home. In fact, artwork has the power to modernize even a classic or Victorian estate. Choose pieces with bright color palettes that complement the design theme of the home.
- Strive for Symmetry
While we’re on the topic of accessorizing, it’s worth emphasizing that your colors–though intended to make a strong impression–should be arranged with symmetry in mind. Though mid-century modern homes tend to mix and match bright colors to great effect, this type of arrangement can be risky without an expert touch.
If you just want your colors to pop, choose a basic color scheme like yellow furniture against a white wall or turquoise decorative pillows complemented by blue- and green-hued artwork. You can always get a second opinion if you’re not sure whether your color scheme is working.
- Take Your Lighting from Monochrome to Color
Don’t overlook your lighting when considering ways to add color to your home. A simple colored lampshade, base, or cord can add an instant pop of color to any space, and best of all, it can be turned on and off as needed. You have total control over the effect.
When choosing colors for your lighting, consider the environment. As noted by Psychology Today, warm colors like reds and oranges can make the space seem warmer than it actually is, while cool colors like greens and blues can create the illusion of cooler temperatures. The optimal colors will largely depend on your own climate.
- Get Creative with Paints
A new coat of paint may not seem like the optimal way to promote a pop of color, but the secret is to use your paints sparingly. For example, rather than painting your entire kitchen, you might just add a splash of blue to your cabinets. When you have brightly colored cabinets against a neutral wall, your kitchen stands out without sacrificing its modern charm. Look for places around your home where you can paint in sections without overwhelming the entire room.
- Let Your Tiles Do the Talking
While we’re talking about isolated patches of color, we should also take some time to mention your flooring and also opportunities for backsplash color. Floors and walls are most often simple and neutral, but they beg to be spruced up. One of the simplest ways to do this for your floors is with a brightly colored area rug. Rather than going for a traditional Persian rug with its dark shades and intricate patterns, look for pastel colors that can brighten up a room. Whereas, on your walls, you can always add artwork, but for kitchens, bathrooms and even fireplaces and pools, you might consider colorful tile accents as a wonderful way to incorporate new colors, patterns, and designs.
- Colorize Your Exterior Space
Finally, we’d be remiss if we didn’t discuss the value of adding color to your outdoor patio or yard. The exterior space is often neglected when it comes to color arrangement, but it’s remarkably simple to brighten up your outdoor oasis and make it more modern and inviting. It may be as easy as replacing your patio seat colors with neon solid colors or even adding a new garden or potted plants to your space. As with the interior, it’s all about accessorizing with the right hues. Swap out those fading floral designs for something that instantly catches the eye.
Author Bio: Katie Tejada is a writer, editor, and former HR professional. She enjoys writing about events, travel, decorating trends, and innovations for the home, but also covers developments in HR, business communication, recruiting, real estate, and finance.