The 60/30/10 Rule for Design

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It can be difficult to know exactly the best way to decorate a room. Especially when choosing the color scheme, you want to make sure that the room is engaging and inviting but doesn’t look busy or display a startling lack of cohesiveness. This is where the 60/30/10 rule comes in. The rule is quite simple and is essentially a guide to choosing the right ratio of colors. It states that 60% of a room should be the dominant color, 30% should be the secondary color, and 10% should be an accent.

The 60%

Your dominant color will likely end up being a more neutral color such as white, grey, or cream. A neutral selection allows you to build upon it with your other 40% of the space without turning the room into a life-size color wheel. Typically, your walls, rugs, sofa, and large foundation pieces will help create this 60%, as they make up the largest sections of the room and should have a unified color scheme.

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The 30%

The secondary color you choose for a room is like the supporting cast for the dominant color. It is different enough to add interest to the room and create some diversity, but not so different that it becomes a competing dominant color. Since this color will compose half as much of the room as the dominant color, you’ll be using things like curtains, side pieces, painted furniture, and smaller foundation pieces to ingratiate this color into the space.

The 10%

Last but not least is your accent color. You have quite a bit of choice with this color and it is often the most fun to play around with. You can decide to maintain the neutral feel with the accent color or add a splash of color that brightens a room and makes it more inviting. You’ll be using throw pillows, artwork, and other accessories to bring the accent color to life.

It can be difficult to know the best colors to pick for a room, and there are multiple ways to go about it. You can go for a monochromatic look and choose various shades of the same color, you can choose two colors (a warm and a cool) that provide contrast in a room, or you can choose three entirely separate colors.

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