Creating Calm with Color

If home is where the heart is, it’s also where stress can harbor.  There are simple elements – many low-cost – that can do wonders for the sense of calm we crave at home, and color is a key player.

A specific hue can energize us, remind us of a happy memory of a beach or vacation spot, or go in the other direction and add to a sense of stress or chaos.  WebMD has some great ideas on how to match colors with a room’s purpose, maximizing “color psychology” to bring a sense of calm, comfort or productivity.  The ancient Chinese practice of fung shui can also be used to bring tranquility to a space, including the colors incorporated in a room’s design.

A color consult is free at most paint stores, though it’s best to go during off-peak times for better service. Different stores have varying levels of expertise, so checking out a few can be a first step to finding a good fit and narrowing down the myriad of hues available. For an accredited professional who will come to your home, see the  International Association of Color Consultants North America for a listing.

For The Healthy Home Project, I chose calming neutrals for common spaces, the master bedroom and home office. Neutrals provide a soothing backdrop for furnishings that can change with trends or seasons, saving time when I want to change things up down the road.  The rooms are arranged using basic feng shui principles, including plants and plenty of light to bring a sense of growth. I let the kids choose their own room colors, which are energizing and playful. They appreciated having ownership in the process, and it just might add some momentum to keeping their fun spaces clean.

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