Monochromatic – a single color, or a color and its variations
- Monochromatic color schemes tend to make rooms feel larger.
- Use accent colors in the neutral range to define borders, boundaries.
Complementary – two colors across from each other on the color wheel
- Go with a complementary color scheme to create energy and drama.
- Complementary color schemes consist of one warm color and one cool color opposite each other.
- Use complementary colors as main, complement, neutral in 60%, 30% and 10%.
- Build your color palette by choosing various shades of your two colors, with more space dedicated to your main color.
- Keep complementary colors equal. If using a light blue, use a light orange. If using a dark red, use a dark green. Avoid mixing intensities in tone, tint and shade.
Split-complementary – one color and the two next to its complementary color (for instance red, green-blue, green-yellow)
Analogous – three colors next to each other on the color wheel (for instance red-orange, red, red-yellow)
- Analogous color schemes can create relaxing environments.
- You’ll get your best results when you don’t mix cool and warm in analogous color scheme.
- You may hear this color scheme called “adjacent” since two of the colors are adjacent to the central color.
Triad – three colors the same distance from each other around the wheel (for instance red, yellow, blue)
- Triad color schemes work best when one color is used as the dominant and the other two are used as highlights and harmonics.
- Some people call this color scheme “triadic.”
Tetrad – four colors the same distance from each other around the wheel (for instance red-orange, violet, blue-green, yellow)
- A tetrad color scheme is two complementary color schemes merged together.
- Add neutral colors like brown, white, gray, blue-gray, beige and cream to a tetrad palette in order to give the eyes a rest.