Color Wheels are a GREAT tool to have, regardless of your ar-teest status. I like to keep one hanging in or around my closet because it helps inspire me to experiment with different color combinations. This one below is the one I use. It’s perfect because it has little windows to show you what colors result from adding black or white, or the primary colors. You can find a color wheel in the art section of craft stores, or at any specialty art store.
Here’s a little run down on how a color wheel works: You have your primary colors: RED, YELLOW, BLUE. These are the colors that cannot be made by mixing any other two colors together. Then you have secondary colors: ORANGE, GREEN, PURPLE/VIOLET. These are colors that are made from combining two primary colors. (Red + yellow=orange; Yellow+blue=green; Red+blue=purple). And then there are the tertiary colors: Yellow-green, Yellow-orange, Blue-green, Blue-violet, Red-orange, Red-violet, These are the colors that result from combining a primary color and a secondary color.
Then you have Complementary colors. Complementary colors are the opposite each other on the color wheel. So, green complements red; Violet complements yellow; Orange complements blue, etc. A lot of complementary colors actually look very good together. Or variations of, such as tinted (white added) blue-green with tinted red-orange.
Here is the Pantone color report for Fall 2013, and next Spring 2014.
Try ‘Acai’ with ‘Linden Green’… Or ‘Emerald’ with ‘Koi’…. or ‘Mykonos Blue’ with ‘Koi’…. ‘Linden Green’ with ‘Deep Lichen Green’ and ‘Carafe’…’Vivacious’ with ‘Acai’ and ‘Turbulence’…
I love to check the Pantone color reports each season. It helps you know which colors are predicted to be on trend, and in turn helps you decide what to look for when shopping for some new wardrobe pieces each season. ;) I can say I’ve definitely noticed stores carrying some of the colors in the Fall color report. Especially the ‘Samba’ red hue (a color I just bought a sweater in)! And looking at the Spring 2014 color report makes me excited to see what designers will be putting out for the upcoming Spring season. It’s nice to see that they are more vibrant than the usual spring pastels.
OK, if you’re already a master of color mixing or if you’re someone who says “I love this ___, but I don’t know what colors to wear with it!” You need to get yourself a color wheel, pronto!! The great thing about the one above /\ is that it allows you to see hues (pure color), shades (with black added), tints (with white added), and tones (with gray added). So instead of just red, you can see what red looks like when white is added. With this kind of color wheel, you’ll have a much broader color spectrum to experiment from.