The décor event of the year is almost here. I’m so excited to be collaborating with The DecorCafe to support its 2017 Home & Garden Festival on Friday 5th May at Strawberry Hills House. I spoke with colour expert, Karen Haller to see what she’ll be sharing with festival guests on the day!
On Friday 5th May, 2017, inside the gothic architectural delight that is the Strawberry Hills House, a celebration of all things interiors will take place. From expert speakers and demonstrations, to home and garden exhibitors, as well as food and beverage tastings, there’s a lot to look forward!
One of many experts who will be sharing their wisdom with you is applied colour psychology expert and industry teacher, Karen Haller. Having studied colour for over 20 years, Karen is an expert on the impact colour and how it influences our behaviour. Karen has worked with global brands such as Farrow & Ball, Dulux and Fiat, and teaches her very own Colour Courses.
“Colour is an incredible phenomenon that impacts every moment of our lives. It has the ability to change how we think and feel and behave in an instant!” – Karen Haller.
Especially for DecorCafe‘s 2017 Festival, Karen has put together a Colour 101 talk where she’ll be sharing how we can use colour to elicit an emotional response, creating positive behaviour and feelings of wellbeing within our home. I asked Karen a few quick questions to get an insight of what to expect, and here’s what she said …
The average person knows colour as pink, white, red, etc … What is your definition of colour?
I find it fascinating to answer “What is colour?” by looking at the science of psychology; the science that explains how the feelings colour generates, affects how we communicate, work, play, relax… how we behave. In psychology we’d say that colour is, and indeed equals, emotion.
When your eyes see colour the light waves (the physical science) pass through the same part of the brain where your emotions are created. When this happens colour stops being a physical thing to see and becomes an emotional response. Just like you have your own personality, each colour and variation of that colour, has its own personality. When you mix these two individual personalities a relationship happens and this relationship have a positive or an adverse effect.
How would you simply explain the encounter between a person and colour?
Colour can influence us to move quickly or slowly, to feel physically stimulated or physically soothed, to aid concentration or to drain us of energy.
It’s important to realise that it’s not the emotional response to a single colour that triggers our reaction, but instead the combination of the colours around us. It’s the combination of those colour personalities with each other as well as our own that then influences behaviour. For example, we could be influenced to do something fun and exciting or even be tempted to eat because the colours we are experiencing are influencing us to feel hungry.
In fact, for every feeling there’s a colour and for every colour there’s a feeling. Colour is affecting us in some way all of the time.
Is there a particular part about working with colour that you like the most?
So when I work with colour in a home I look to bring out a visual and emotional expression of your personality and the emotions you like to experience there.
Given we spend so much time in our homes, most people want to surround themselves with colours and a design style that positively affects their mood which then has a direct connection with how they behave and interact with the people they share that space with.
Applied colour psychology allows me to create bespoke colour palettes to elicit positive psychological responses. By using colour in this very emotional yet scientific way, it allows me to create a home that you love and that loves you back.
If someone is stuck with choosing a colour palette for their home, what would your advice be?
The most fundamental piece of advice I give is to reconnect back to who you are as an individual, as a partner or as a family unit. Forget about the trends and what your friends or neighbours are doing. Get back to what you love, what really makes you and your family happy. And a good place to start is connecting back to your intuition, how you want to interact and communicate in the space that you share and seek out the colours that will help support that.
Look forward to seeing you all at the event!