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How Paint Color Affects You, Part 5: Purple

July 17, 2017

Over the course of this series about how colors affect mood, we’ve bounced back and forth between the calming colors and the exciting colors. We started with the ultimate calming color, Baker-Miller pink, and then went to the most exciting color, red. After that we cooled things down a little with green, only to excite you again with yellow. So now seems a good a time as any to head back to a cooler, more calming color: purple.

At one time, purple was the rarest of colors. While red was easy to get from berries and orange was often found by grinding up plant roots, in the most populous parts of the world purple only came from one source: a mollusk that lived in a small portion of the Mediterranean Sea. Since it was so rare, only the most rich and royal people of the known world were able to afford it.

Luckily, today we have artificial pigments that can get you any color purple you want, and it’s not more expensive than any other color. But why would you choose to hire an interior painting service to paint your walls purple? Let’s take a look at how purple can affect you and those in your home.

It’s Sophisticated

Even though artificial purple has been around for hundreds of years, it’s still associated with royalty. Though it’s since made its way from royalty to the rich to the well-off to the masses, it still holds that status as a sophisticated color. Painting something purple is making a statement.

It’s Artistic

Purple is often seen as an artistic color. Again, this might be historical, as only the most highly-regarded clothesmakers and hand-copied book artists would have had access to such high-quality inks.

It’s Restful

Being one of the cooler colors, purple is restful. This is especially true of lavender, which is easy on the eyes and goes very well in bedrooms in order to create a peaceful atmosphere. But unlike blue, which can create a chilly feeling in a room (more on that when we get to the blog on what blue does to mood), purples are a step closer on the color wheel to red. This gives it a soothing look while being a bit warmer.

It’s A Wonderful Accent

A deep purple makes an amazing accent color. If you put someone in a completely white room with just a few purple accent pieces, they won’t identify the room as white but instead call it “the purple room.”

It Can Be Polarizing

Some people are drawn to purple because they’ve been told the story of its rarity in history. Others are subconsciously repelled by it in large quantities because they know that it should be rare, and to see an entire room painted purple seems unnatural and artificial. That’s why some designers tend to use it only as an accent color, as mentioned above. So if you really love purple, hire a painting company to paint your own bedroom. But because this color can be polarizing, you might want to hold off on painting the guest bedroom purple.

You Do Not Want It In A Restaurant (unless you do)

While we certainly do a good amount of residential painting, we also tackle a whole lot of commercial painting. That includes painting fast food restaurants, which require very specific colors in order to adhere to the home office’s demands. One color that we don’t use very often? Purple. Along with gray, purple actually makes people less hungry, so fast food restaurants tend to not use it. (The one exception is Taco Bell, which for 20 years used deep blue-purple, a reddish purple, and yellow. As we know from our blog about yellow, it gets people’s attention, and the reddish-purple make people impulsive and eat more. But just last year they switched to purple, white, and black, which is a bold choice. When you’re one of the top 10 largest chains in the United States and everyone else is using red and yellow, perhaps they’re hoping the counter programming works.)

As we mentioned above, purple can be polarizing. Most people avoid using a deep purple for every wall, but it certainly makes one of the best possible colors for trim. Contact a painting contractor to help you decide how purple can fit into your home!



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