Color is perhaps the most vital aspect of interior decor because it influences the mood as well as sets the tone and environment of the room. A good color scheme can unite furnishings and accessories, minimize architectural faults and make the room appear larger or smaller than the actual scale. All in all, it can make a house come alive and transform it into a home.

Our eyes, mind and emotions respond to different colors surrounding us. Some of these responses are personal, i.e. depending on our likes and dislikes (which are defined by our personality, experiences, and moods). However, there are also some common opinions about colors (aka, emotive qualities of color), such as:

“I’m feeling blue.”

“She’s got the baby blues…”

“…in the pink of health…”

“I brush my teeth once in a blue moon…” (Not really)

“The dull grey weather is perfect for sleeping in.”

These are all emotive qualities of colors.

Your first impression about a home is created as soon as you step into it and the atmosphere continues to influence you as you move through the structure. You notice the wall paint color, accessories, fabrics and so on, and they all come together to create a multitude of complex effects.

Before we dive deeper into this subject, let’s go over the two basic categories that color is divided into:

  • Warm colors – these are stimulating in nature and are associated with fire and the sun (red, orange and yellow). They give off a warm effect in your home too.
  • Cool colors – these are serene, restful and associated with the forest, sky, and water (white, greens and blues). For this very reason, homes situated in warm climate zones usually have very pale colors in their interiors and exteriors. Think of the white and blue villas of Spain for reference.

Colors that result from mixing these primary and secondary colors can create a miracle in interior design and do wonders for your home decor, causing a variety of emotional responses.

Let’s look at a few interiors that explain the powerful impact of rising colors in your home.

Gray and white hallway decor

A gray and white modern hallway design (Source: Christina Adventures).

This simple yet elegant hallway decor idea is a great example of how careful color selection can create the perfect look in a home. The steel gray highlights the hallway that is painted in shades of white and off-white. The textured rug breaks the monotony of the wooden floor, just like the gray and white photos dot the gray walls.

Different shades of yellow and green – living room decor

Nature interior design living room yellow green

A nature-inspired yellow and green living room (Source: Decor Head).

Let’s have look at what kind of moods are evoked by this color scheme.

As mentioned earlier, yellow is a primary color associated with warmth and brightness. In this lounge design, pale buttermilk curtains and a warm beige carpet, complement the off-white upholstery of the sofa. The speckles of green color in the living room decor remind us of a fresh spring day. The colored cushions and patterns on the curtains contrast the plain texture of the sofa.

The accessories (lamp, photo frame, bowl of fruit and flower vases) all add to the decor’s main theme of a welcoming, warm spring morning. This sunshine lounge decorated in shades of yellow and green make the room bright and warm.

A bedroom with different shades of orange

A bright bedroom with orange and other autumn shades (Source:
The color scheme of this bedroom revolves around tones of orange (a secondary color) ranging from apricot to peach, which all help create a warm yet cheerful ambiance. There are also two eye-catching focal points, the bronze mirror and abstract painting on the wall, that reflect the overall mood of the bedroom decor. Indeed, the bed duvet and sofa upholstery are very bright orange but to even them out are the pale peach walls of the bedroom as well as the off-white shrug carpet beneath the bed.

In total contrast is the dark brown wooden floor. In the end, the striped cushion upholstery of the footrest gels all the colors of the bedroom. Overall, this is a vibrantly warm and cheerful bedroom decor.

A cool breezy lounge decor

A sitting area with serene shades of blue and white (Source: DigsDigs).
The white and blue color scheme of this lounge creates restfulness. The light beige sofa upholstery is accentuated with the blue cushions and vice versa. The carpet is a combination of both beige and blue, which brings together the color scheme, while the white blinds and wall add a sense of space and coolness to the modern living room.

A dark blue-gray modern lounge decor

A monochromatic living room area but with darker shades of blue and brown (Source: DigsDigs).

I decided to include this photo to show how slight variations in color shades can change the entire ambiance of the room. Compared to the previous photo that used lighter shades of blue and beige, this living room decor relies on deep blue-gray shades for the wall and accessories, such as the lamp, cushions and the throw-on. The beige in the previous living room decor has been deepened to a darker brown in the leather upholstery of the sofa. To even out the dark tones in the room is the pale gray carpet and patterned rug, as well as the large white pictures on the shelf. The mood in this room is one of elegance, calmness, and somberness.

A gray bedroom decor

A steel-gray bedroom with streaks of white (Source: ShackRevamp).

Gray is a popular color scheme choice for bedrooms because it has a very soothing effect on the eyes. The monochromatic color scheme helps to calm down the mind when you wake up in the morning and when you finally set foot into your bedroom in the evening. The pictures on the wall add a bit of white and the affirmation, ‘Be Still,’ adds a nice touch to the overall peaceful mood of the room.

The minimalist decor has a sleek over-head lamp in a darker shade of gray, which complements the black frame of the pictures on the wall.

When working with gray, remember to add different shades of the color to break the monotony and look for different textures and shapes to add variety, just as this photo shows.

A cozy gray bedroom decor

A light gray bedroom idea with other pastel colors (Source: ShackRevamp).

A steel gray wall in the bedroom adds a lot of ambiance and a feeling of restfulness. Care must be taken to even out the dark color on one wall with light shades on the other, as in this photo. The bed cover is also largely white as well as the sofa upholstery, which helps to counter the gray backdrop and make the room look bigger.

A gray color scheme works best when put together with warm colors, such as light pink and brown, which can be seen in the furniture, wooden flooring as well as the cushion.

Final thoughts about monochromatic color schemes

The monochromatic color scheme is pretty common yet difficult to use successfully because many interiors simply end up looking monotonous. Interest is created by using a diversity of patterns, shapes, textures, and accessories in the lounge. The neutral colors, white and beige, are used in various values and intensities to achieve unity, elegance, and style.

These seven monochromatic interior decors show how colors can be used to create an emotive expression in the minds of the onlooker.