Green is the predominant colour of our planet from outer space. Green is the colour of youth, growth, ecology, relaxation, balance, recovery and optimism. It connects us to nature. Green soothes disturbed emotions and provides restful sleep, which makes it the ideal colour for a bedroom. It is a favourite colour in hospitals where its calming influence counteracts fear and trauma.
Green is perfect foil for most other colours, but using several greens together it is best to keep to light and dark tones of the same green. Sea green and olive, for instance, make a sickly combination, as do yellow-green and pine. If in doubt, search through a plant manual for the best green combinations – nature never gets it wrong.
Although green is a cool colour, it will not make a room feel cold so long as there are warm contrasts. The lighter greens feel most youthful, refreshing and full of positive energy, just like new growth in springtime. They look good in a contemporary-style room with plum-purple and chocolate-brown. Olive, moss, lime and lichen are other unusual shades of green with contemporary edge.
Sage is a soft-grey which is very easy on the eye - a most restful, cool, meditative colour. Sage itself is the herb associated with wisdom and memory. Muddy green is thought to be depressing because of its associations with decay in nature, and lime green can induce feelings of nausea. Leaf green is the best colour of new shoots, full of freshness, hope and energy. Pine green can be cold unless brightened with contrasts. A deep green looks good with burnt orange and cream.
To appreciate green’s harmonising effect, think of a garden filled with many different colours flowers. It is the green foliage around all these colours that allows them to blend so well together. Use green in the same way when you decorate, and you will find that the results are invariably harmonious.