Colour-Blocking Made Easy: Take It To The Walls

Ok I am going to call it! 2019 is the year of colour blocking EVERYthing! Wherever you look you will most likley see someone writing or talking about colour blocking. Me included (yes I just finished a nother part of our living room).

But what really is meant by that, and how can you become part of the movement? I have looked into this for you and compiled a small guide on what options are out there, how to combine your favorite colour palette and threw in some of my favoutire inspirations to round it all up!

#1 What Is Colour-Blocking?

Colour-Blocking refers to a method of decorating or styling, where a given amount of colours, either through paint on walls or/and through furniture and accessories are combined, in a confined space to create a pleasing effect on the eye. In retail and fashion for example, the same applies, trends and outfit tend to be colour blocked to create an overall look, for the customer to purchase. Chance is, unless you are living in a single colour home, you are already doing it as well.

#2 Create Your Own Colour-Blocking Palette Made Easy!

Ok here the crowds divide, because there are literally hundreds way to go about this. But not worry, I am going to talk you through the most common suggestions up till my personal favourite method.

NR. 1 suggestions from most interior designers I have had the pleasure of meeting, is to start in your wardrobe. Yes you heard right - head right over there to get a glimse. The suggestions is based on the assumption that you should surround your home with colours you like to wear. EHHH! This however does not work for me. My wardrobe consists mainly of whites, greys and black - throw in the odd sand/beige and denim and I am a happy chap. BUT if you have been following along my Instagram journey, you know that my home is somewhat colourful. I have a pink kitchen, a green bathroom, funky wallpaper and ofcourse some colour-blocking throughout. So you can see how this particular method just wouldn’t cut it for me, right? In fact my home decorating style is the complete opposite of what I like to wear. I would however go so far to say that if you do find colours in your wardrobe, let’s say different shades of green on different pieces, I would imagine you actually like this colour and this could be your starting point. Hold that thought about the green - I will talk more about this below.

Nr. 2 in this round up suggest to look at your home and see what colour are already represented. Do you have a main colour or a theme? What colour is your rug, cushions, wall art etc.? Chances are that you got something good there and can make use of it. Personally, our home was very white/ grey with pinewood furniture with coloured wall art in forms of skateboards. So again not much of a point for me to go from. But if you were able to identify a colour you love and that is already represented in your home, let’s say green again to keep it simple, hold that thought.

If you are however like me and dress rather bland (hey nothing wrong with a tee and a pair of denims), and your home is in shambles or in different shades of grey and you can just not identify a colour that speaks to you within your own four walls, I have a method that might just blow your mind.

Nr. 3 Right everytime I am a bit in a slumb for inspiration, I head over to Pinterest and just type in ‘Colour’ and et voila a huge amount of painting, colour mood boards, paint colour samples, artwork, you name it, come up. Easy right? Hey I didn’t say it has to be rocket science ;-)

Now the fun part begins, scroll through and stop at what catches your eye, open it in a new tab and continue. Once you have a few tabs open, go back to them and see if you have colour ‘theme’, with that I mean - do you see a pattern emerging? Are you more drawn to the bright and poppy colours and are your open tabs containing shades that are muted?

Image by: http://www.tigercolor.com

Image by: http://www.tigercolor.com

From here on it is all science! Ok not really science, but lets talk about primary, secondary and tertiary colours. You all have probably heard of the colour wheel, right? An illustration that demonstrates colours are in direct relation to one another. Let me give you a little crash course in the basics, incase it’s been a few moons since you heard about it.

Primary colours are indentified as red, yellow and blue, whereas secondary colours derive from mixing those, resulting in purple, orange and green. Tertiary colours oon the other hand are the result of mixing primary and secondary colours. For example, purple and red will give you a lovely magenta.

But what has this to do with our colour-blocking? Well it is all about harmony, and in what relations your chosen colours stand to each other. Some combination are more suitable than others.

The main point I want you take away from this is that you colours can either complement each other in form of a contrast, take red and green for example, which are the opposites of each on the colour wheel, or in form being on the colour spectrum and “neighbours” to each other, for example red, orange and yellow. A third (simplified) way of looking at is that you can choose two or three neighbourly shades and add a complementary contrast to all three of them. Let me just add I am using most likley made up words, because no one is helped by throwing in terms like Analogous or Triadic in here.

Let’s put it in practise with a few examples.

The three images below are wonderful examples of what colour-blocking in a room can look like. The first image shows two colours, I’d say a blush and turquoise that are the opposite each other, one is warm, the other is cold. If we translate them to their primary origins we would have found us a yellow and blue on the colour that the opposite of each other. By however only using contrast colours a room can quickly become overbearing, so a smart suggestion is to do as in image 2. You choose your contrast colours, here red on the wall and blue on the sofa. To tone it down and make it easier on the eye, colours in their respective families, ie neighbours are used to “fill” the gap. Therefore we can find a lush pink and a dark purple to complement the two primary tones. The third image, and a way of applying colour that I personally love (but somehow always fail to achieve) is to stay tone in tone. The red hues are carried throughout the wall paint and accessories of this and make it a real stunner, don’t you think?

Ok now you should be well prepared to whip up your own favourite and personalised colour palette! Let’s quickly recap before I move on to showing how to take colour-blocking to the walls.

  1. Identify your main game colours - pick two you absolutely adore and can see happening in your home

  2. Decide if you want to stay close to home with your colours and just want to keep it mute and simple (remember nothing boring about that - just look at image 3 again if you are in doubt) or if you want to add a contrast.

  3. If you decide to have a contrast, decide if it’s going to be in form of a colour also for your walls or as in a piece of furniture/ accessoy as in image 1 (we don’t want to go overboard with two contrast colours trying to out-do each other - one of the two should be the major player) or as in form of complementing your neighbourly colours.

  4. Ready-Set-Go!


#3 Different Ways Of Colour-Blocking To Your Walls!

So now that we have talked about what colour-blocking is and how to choose your colour paletter, we going deeper in the how you can add it to your home! We already talked about how you can make a room look whole if you include your furniture and home accessories into the colour scheme. They should be absolutely part of every consideration, but what I really want to touch up on is what you can do to walls.

Walls, Walls & more Walls! Chances are you’re a bit like me and may have a bland mix of furniture and accessories so that either colour choice you make wouldn’t hurt your current possesions. There are endless possibilities, when it comes to painting your walls, and colour-blocking is such a fun and cheap way to make a room (or wall stand out). Here are some of my top tips to take home!

  1. Two-toned walls: Easy piesy! Pick two colours of your choice and get painting. Vertical or Diagonal - the world is your oyster.

2. Painted Doors & Windows: This is a super fun to not only enhance the details of your home but also add contrast (or complementation) to your space.

3. Regular, Irregular, round, square and Asymetric Shapes: Get your masking tape and sketch book out to plan ahead your beautiful wall. If you paint circles and that, it is a bit harder than painting straight lines as it requires some what a steady hand, but nothing is impossible with a bit of practise.

And ofcourse you can mix and match all those elements in one too! It really is 100% up to you to break all rules and defy gravity. The most important thing is that you love it and have fun!

See what I did in our living room for example:

For more inspiration check out this Pinterest Board I created for you and continue reading below to see my favourite colour-blocking geniuses.

#4 People Who Rock At Colour-Blocking Already!

Last but not least, here my friends I am going to share with you some of favourite Instagram & Blogger Ladies, who rock at colour-blocking!

Ari @arianna_danielson

Ari the most lush and moody style I know. Her walls and home are filled with frills and irregular shapes, no matter however oppulent her home may be, it’s never overpowering but simply beautiful. I for one can not get enough of her home and eagerly await every day my dose of Ari.

Lizzy @lizzyhigham_interiorstyling

Lizzy is the queen of colours, literally! Her home is as bright her sunny self. If hot pink cushions or deep green walls, she never lets me down in giving me a proper colour injection - not to mention the way she pairs colours - against all the odds it looks amazing and she’s for sure got an eye and gut to just do it. And may I just add - how good does the pink dresser look against the peach wall below?!

Liz @liz_kamarul
Gee, where to begin? Liz is a veteran in the colour-blocking business and definitely a MAJOR inspiration and influence to (for) me. She is so good she even takes it to the floor. Genius right?

I hope you all enjoyed this little round up and can take away some inspirations for you own home. If you want to brainstorm ideas together or just have a chat get in touch! I am so excited every time one of you reaches out.

Happy Friday x