Stressless Style

Interior Design III: Fewer Colors

Designing your ideal interior is a multistep process with plenty to consider, which is why we’ve approached it in a sequence of informative posts to help get you started. First, we introduced you to the elements of Norwegian design, highlighting its emphasis on natural materials, distinctive lighting, durability, functionality and practical elegance. Following this thread, we then considered related arguments for embracing simplicity. Sometimes, when embarking on an interior design project – particularly when you’ve decided on a Norwegian aesthetic and resolved to keep things simple – you can achieve more with less. With these factors in mind, let’s explore color – and how using less of it can make a greater impact on the interior design of your home.

Consider Color Theory

Traced back to Sir Isaac Newton’s color wheel, traditional color theory equates “warm” or “cool” colors with the moods they impart to a painting, for example, but the wheel is also useful as a reference point for establishing color schemes for interior design. Putting some thought into what sort of feeling you want your guests to experience, and then using the color wheel to align color ideas accordingly, can be a helpful exercise for visualizing your new design palette.

Set the Vibe

Once you have an idea of the vibe you’re going for, and you’ve absorbed the general concepts of Norwegian design, consider applying some of these same principles to your color selection. First, align your thinking around a single color. How would variations on this theme apply throughout a room? Never forget the mantra: Less Is More. It will serve you well, keeping your interior design project well within the Norwegian approach while consistently aligning the simple yet unified mood you want to achieve throughout the room. You can do plenty with a single hue.

Stay Minimal

Minimizing color doesn’t mean you’re stuck with black, white and gray. Of course you can make a modern-looking room with these shades, but if you’re less than excited by a palette that’s quite this muted, fear not – you can still bring the color. Selecting a single accent color can form the foundation of a consistent, yet minimized color scheme. Try painting an entire wall in your accent color of choice, and select furniture within a few degrees of this hue. If you limit yourself to three or four shades of this single, overarching color scheme and remember the mantra, you’re golden. Then again, there’s no hard and fast rule about sticking with the shades of a single color. You can select a few related colors (of different hues) and still keep your palette minimal.

See What’s Out There

Sometimes it’s helpful to jump online and check out a few recent, minimalist color palettes that others have assembled. This can be a great way to inspire yourself to create your own. Once you know what others are doing and get acquainted with the “rules,” you’ll be better equipped to break them. Combine a little knowledge of minimalist color theory, Norwegian design principles and your own unique preferences with some creativity-triggering ideas of those who have tread this path before you. Filtering it all through the Less Is More mantra, you’ll be well-equipped with all the tools you need to take your interior design project to another, more satisfying level.