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Knowing how color harmonies work can ease the burden of selecting a suitable home or commercial color palette. Color harmony is everywhere; if you’ve seen any two colors that look good together, that’s color harmony at work. As your leading contractors for exterior painting in Metairie, LA, here’s our quick guide to using color harmonies.

Color Wheel

The color wheel is a simple yet extremely useful tool for creating color harmonies. If you don’t have one on hand, you can search online for a simple, 12-color wheel to get you started. The color wheel is comprised of the following color groups:

  • Primary colors – Namely red, blue, and yellow.
  • Secondary colors – Combinations of any two primary colors: purple (red and blue), green (blue and yellow), and orange (red and yellow).
  • Tertiary colors – Six colors resulting from combining two adjacent colors in the primary and secondary colors: vermillion (red and orange), amber (orange and yellow), chartreuse (yellow and green), teal (blue and green), violet (blue and purple), and magenta (red and purple).

Color Harmonies

Color harmonies can be described in terms of shapes in relation to positions in the color wheel. To illustrate this and to encourage easier application on exterior painting in Mandeville, LA, think of the color wheel as a clock face with the main color in the 12 o’clock position, which we will use on all the following examples.

  • Monochromatic – This means different shades of the same color.
  • Analogous – This means three consecutive colors on a color wheel. The analogous colors would be at 11 o’clock and 1 o’clock, so if yellow is the main color, then amber and chartreuse are analogous colors.
  • Complementary – Colors that are opposite each other in a color wheel, i.e. the 6 o’clock position, such as red and green.
  • Split complementary – Choose the two colors analogous to the complementary color, i.e. 5 and 7 o’clock positions. Orange would have violet and teal as its split complementary.
  • Double complement – This is two sets of complementary colors that sit next to each other, so the positions would be 12, 1, 6, and 7 o’clock.
  • Tetrad – Four hues of equal distance from each other. It can either be a perfect square (12, 3, 6, and 9 o’clock) or a rectangle (12, 2, 6 and 8 o’clock).
  • Diad – These are two colors located two steps apart in the color wheel (12 and 2 o’clock), such as magenta and violet, or teal and chartreuse.
  • Triad – These are three colors forming an equilateral triangle (12, 4 and 8 o’clock). This is the only formation where you can choose all three primaries.

Once you have decided on your color palette, remember that you don’t have to use all colors in equal amounts. Rather, choose a main color and use the others in smaller amounts, such as for trim or maybe the front entrance.

For more tips on color harmonies, ask the experts on exterior painting in Lafayette, LA. Call Mid South Coatings today at (888) 291-0090 or fill out our contact form to schedule a free, no obligation estimate.