The Psychology of Colour in Interior Design: Illuminating the Impact of Lighting

The Psychology of Colour in Interior Design: Illuminating the Impact of Lighting

Interior Design is an art with a blend of aesthetics, functionality, and psychology. Do you know which element is one of the most influential when crafting a design? "Colour". It has a remarkable power to arouse emotions within a space, can set the desired mood and shape the perception of a given area. The role of colour is not just limited to the shade you choose for your interior design, but also how well the light works or enhances your spaces. In this blog, we will explore the psychology of colour in interior design and how lighting can significantly change space experience.

The Psychology of Colour

Before we go deeper into how colour and lighting work together, let's first understand the psychological effects of colours. Remember that different colours evoke emotions and differ between individuals and cultures. Let's have a quick look into some common emotional responses to certain colours:

Red tones: This lively shade is great for your dining room or entertainment space. It is linked to passion, energy and enthusiasm because it stimulates your senses. That's why it is an excellent choice for an entertainment space, where you want to create a vibrant atmosphere.

Blue tones: Blue is known to be calming and soothing encouraging an atmosphere of relaxation and Serenity. This is why it is the most preferred shade for your peaceful and resting spaces such as the bedroom and bathroom.

Yellow tones: Cheerful yellow is best suited for a gathering space, making you feel warm and happy. This is why it is an excellent pick for your kitchen area, living room or a place where you make your guests come together for a social interaction. However, also very good in a child’s bedroom.

Green tones: Bringing a feeling of nature and growth to the mind. This shade is a go-to choice when you want to feel a connection with the outdoors provoking serenity and calmness, making it a good fit for bedrooms or offices.

Purple tones: With a sense of richness, creativity, and spirituality, this colour injects a touch of luxury to your space where you nurture your creativity. This is why this is often picked for a home office area or a room where you do your creative design.

The Impact of Lighting

As we have investigated the psychology of colour, let's now understand the role of lighting in interior design. Lighting isn't only about the function; it's a magic tool that redesigns your space and changes the perception of the colour we see. Now let's see how lighting can impact the way we experience colour:

Natural Light: Changing hours, shifting seasons and weather play a gentle role in how colours appear. It is fair to say that the most radiant form of light is sunlight, unveiling the most authentic beauty of colour. A north facing room may receive cooler bluish light and the south facing room receives a warmer yellowish light.

Artificial Lighting: The colour temperature (Kelvins) of any artificial light can significantly impact on the colour shades in any space or how we feel about any particular colour. The higher the kelvins the more accurate your colour will appear, a kelvin rating more than 5000-5500K will give the best appearance of natural day light.

Image of Kelvin ratings and the temperature

Colour Temperature: Each artificial light source has a different colour temperature. The lowest colour temperature emits warm yellowish light, while the higher colour temperature emits cooler white light. Picking a lower kelvin light will create a warmer atmosphere whilst a higher kelvin would be more suited to a livelier space such as a kitchen or office.

Directional Lighting: The direction of the light from where it enters the space is essential to make the colour shade of a particular area stand out.

Layered Lighting: Blending different types of lighting gives the flexibility to create various vibes in a space. By adjusting the brightness and placement of the light it can make the colour appear stronger or tone it down.


The psychology of colour and the impact of appropriate lighting are integral considerations when planning your interior design project. Understanding how shades of colour affect emotions and how lighting boosts or changes these emotions is important to designing pleasing and resonant interiors. Well selected lighting will create depth, balance and space.

When you start your interior design work, consider the psychological influence of colours and make thoughtful choices when it comes to Lighting that complements your chosen colour scheme and the ambience you aim for. By mastering this dynamic blend of colour and Lighting, you can turn any space into a visually appealing one and create the perfect atmosphere.

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