Feng Shui Color : The Year-Round Sunshine Of Yellow

Kelly Wearstler's office is mind-blowing & graphic, but grounded on yellow.

Yellow is the perennially warm, sun-shiny color that signals cheer, lightness and freshness, and though it is a scary color for many to experiment with, it is a powerful agent of space-change.  Yellow helps you actually see and understand the form & structure of things, so yellow walls within complicated or purposeful architecture can be clarifying and enlightening to your eyes.  Some yellows can bring tremendous energy (like rays of sun) to your home, and others can bring the sandy feeling of beaches or the tones of earthy soil in a radiant way to your home.  The key to yellow is to use it purposefully and sparingly on walls.  Here are some yellow examples and what works about them…!

This yellow kitchen is light, fresh and sherbet-like.  While too deep a yellow kitchen can make food seem unappealing, a light, fresh yellow can make the kitchen more prosperously inviting and easier to navigate.  Always make sure you have great sunlight and lighting in a kitchen of this hue, as in poor light it can look unappetizing and create the opposite effect!

Ta-dah! Above, the freshness of lemony yellow creates warmth and stability in this overall high-gloss, high-drama space.  If the walls above were, say, lime green, you would feel overwhelmed by the energy of wood.  If they were pink, the room would feel too hot.  If they were cream you would feel they were dull.  Yellow is a big move, but it makes a huge difference!

Can you see how the gold in the above room really clarifies and carves out the space, making it easier to see the individual components of the room without feeling overwhelmed? Golden colors are a much bigger design-risk, but in rooms such as these that are full of art and ornate elements, yellow can help you see better.  In fact, historically this golden hue is equated with a regal, highly spiritual, exhaled energy and creates a richness that no other color can while still feeling light and invigorating on walls.

Bathrooms are difficult if they are, say, the gold of our last photo.  But a muted, more earthy and mossy yellow in a bathroom can add the energy of earth to your bathroom (balancing all the water) while waking you up!  And a little note to the ladies: if you have a yellow bathroom, be sure you have a vanity in a separate area to do makeup and dress or else you may be competing with the environment to find the right skin tones and colors to wear!

Final notes for the day on yellow- I’m not a fan of yellow bedrooms (they are somewhat antithetical to sleep, more of an “awake” color and can be somewhat maniacal (I grew up with a yellow bedroom, and I ardently oppose it!) unless the yellow is much more like sand than citrus.  Also, my favorite foyer color is and always will be yellow since it creates such a lovely, bright welcome and anything placed upon it seems to shine even more brightly, which is a fabulous way to be greeted as you come through your door.

xoxo Dana

Iris March 18, 2012 at 6:14 am

Your site rocks!

Iris A.G.
Iforcolor

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danaclaudat March 18, 2012 at 6:31 am

Omg thank you sooooo much! xoxo

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William Lucas April 9, 2013 at 3:51 pm

I love the yellow in the kitchen photo, with the dark cabinets and stainless steel. Do you know what the paint name / color / brand is? Thanks!

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danaclaudat April 9, 2013 at 9:44 pm

i don’t…but i bet farrow & ball has a color like it- they have the BEST colors. not cheap but very chic!

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Cl arence T February 1, 2014 at 7:31 pm

Hi!, Lucas, That yelow is a ,BEHR paint ,Wildflower Honey 350B-6

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