The 60/30/10 Color Rule

60_30_10_Color Rules.mediumIf you have been thinking of redecorating, but aren’t sure where to start, consider the 60/30/10 rule when picking out your color scheme. This easy-to-remember guide breaks up colors into a percentage of primary, secondary and accent tones. From there, it will be much easier to choose paint, fabrics and decor that speak to your personal style and taste.

Interior designers suggest choosing your primary color first.  This should be a “neutral” tone, as it will the most prominent, making up about 60 percent of your room.  Now, don’t be discouraged by the word “neutral”. While you can use a beige, grey, or white, you could also use a softer tint of your favorite color.

The secondary color, or anchor tone, is next.  It should make up about 30 percent of your room.  Consider your anchor color when selecting items like upholstered furniture, curtains, large rugs or bedspreads.

Finally, the accent color is where you can have the most fun.  Since it is only about 10 percent of the room, consider vibrant tones or colors that provide pop. Use it in moderation with items like pillows, wall decor or smaller accent rugs.

If you choose a deep shade as a secondary color on walls, give the paint a satin finish for a lux look. Darker colors tend to look muted or chalky.  With light colors, the opposite applies.  These colors can become too bright if given a shiny coat.

If you want to apply the 60/30/10 color rule to your home’s exterior, think of it this way:  The primary color is the brick or siding, the trim is the secondary color and the front door, porch chairs, or planters are the accents.

Before you commit to any color, it is always a good idea to invest in a few paint samples.  Buying a few different hues now, and painting test swatches next to each other, will save you from potential regret later. Pay attention to how the colors change throughout the day and night under artificial light. Interior colors always tend to look darker, while exterior colors appear lighter in natural light.

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