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Use bold colours to liven up your neutral living space

Go on, be bold! You’re looking at the neutral tones in your home and wondering how you can add a little sparkle and reflect your own personality. Use your creativity with colours and you can transform your tired, neutral room into a different space altogether!

 Vibrant colours are big business in interior design at the moment and there are lots of ways to use colour in your home, from using brightly-coloured fabrics, to painting a feature wall in your favourite hue.

 As well as style features, colours can create just the kind of atmosphere you’re looking for – gentle blues in the bedroom to aid relaxation or bright yellows in the living room to lift the mood. Red, said to stimulate the appetite, can be used in the kitchen, and purple – traditionally seen as the colour of love – can be used anywhere around the home where you want to feel creative and sexy!

 Certain colours can give the illusion of space, others give a cosy feel. You can use the same shades or use hints of that colour scattered across the room rather than going for a block of colour, as too many colour combinations can be overpowering and lead to a sensory overload – not what you want when you’re trying to get a good night’s sleep!

  Use brightly-coloured accessories if you don’t want to splash too much colour around to start with. Brightly coloured accents, such as a few strongly-hued cushions

or a lampshade will add a touch of colour and character to the room. Or layer colours – varying shades of red through to pinks is a little less dramatic but still achieves a striking effect. Painting colourful strips alongside a more neutral tone also achieves the desired effect without overwhelming visitors.

 Vibrant reds, yellows and oranges will warm up the room. Cool colours – blues, greens and violets – give the appearance of more space. Bright green is a popular shade – as well as being nature’s own colour, it also goes very well with neutrals and browns, so pairing up a neutral room with a bold green accent makes for a winning combination. Too many white walls can look drab, so bright oranges and reds will combat this.

 Another way of introducing colour to your home is to use mosaics – they can be used as accents, around a coffee table, mirrors and lampshades or for those who are more daring, they can be used on walls or floors.

 Remember, colours appear different according to the different wall surfaces and in different lighting. The best way to pick a colour is to paint a square on the wall first and let it dry so you can see how it looks over the course of the day, when the sun is shining on the surface.

 Finally, a colour wheel can help you pick out which colours to use. What might look good in a paint sample might not quite achieve the desired affect on the wall. Colour wheels are used by artists and designers to give them an idea of which colours complement each other – this is highly recommended to avoid any disastrous colour clashes!

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