The Color Wheel

Use the Color Wheel to understand how colors relate to one another and how to combine them in color schemes. Once understanding the basic principles of color theory, you will be able to create color schemes with confidence and achieve exactly the mood you want.

The Color Wheel - Mouseover the links
on the right. Use this information to create a color scheme.

The Color Wheel

Primary Colors
Red, Blue and Yellow

Secondary Colors
Created by mixing 2 primary colors together resulting in (green, purple and orange)

Complimentary Colors
Colors opposite each other on the Color Wheel.

Analogous Colors
Color next to eachother on the Color Wheel

Triadic Colors
Three colors equally spaced on the Color Wheel.

Split-Complementary Colors
Uses three colors - the main color and the two colors adjacent to its complement on the Color Wheel.

Rectangle (tetradic) Colors
The rectangle or tetradic color scheme uses four colors arranged into two complementary pairs.

Square (tetradic) Colors
The square color scheme is similar to the rectangle, but with all four colors spaced evenly around the Color Wheel.

The Color Wheel shows how colors are related:

  • Primary Colors - Red, yellow and blue are primary colors.
  • Secondary Colors - Orange, green and purple are secondary colors made by combining two primary colors. All colors are made from some combination of white, black and primary colors.
  • Related Colors - are those next to one another on the color wheel. Designers often build color schemes around two or three related colors.
  • Complementary Colors - are located opposite each other on the color wheel. Blue, for example, is the complement of orange. Complementary colors enhance each other in decorating schemes.
  • Neutral Colors - are shades of white, gray or beige. Most neutrals are tinted slightly with a warm or cool color. Neutral-colored walls provide a backdrop that does not compete with furnishings and accessories.

More Color Tools click here


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