Home Decor Tricks: How to Use the 60-30-10 Color Rule

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The colors you use in your home décor are every bit as important as the design and materials. Unfortunately, color is one of those subjects that can become confusing and overwhelming for the home self-decorator.

The good news is that achieving a Pinterest-worthy color scheme is easier than you might think.

Interior designers have a tried-and-true trick to providing visual interest and creating a sense of balance with color. It’s called the 60-30-10 rule, and it’s simple to learn and follow. 

What Is the 60-30-10 Color Rule of Home Décor?

The 60-30-10 rule is a way to plan an appealing, balanced color scheme for virtually any living space. To decorate a room, simply select three colors and use them in the following proportions through the home décor:

  • Decorate 60 percent of the space with one dominant shade
  • Decorate 30 percent of the space with a secondary shade
  • Decorate 10 percent of the space with an accent shade

How Can You Apply This Color Rule to Your Home Décor?

Talking about proportions and referring to numbers seems a lot like math but, don’t worry, you won’t need any advanced math skills to use the 60-30-10 color rule.

The 60 percent shade is the primary color for your living space, which serves as the anchor of the palette. Typically, this is color of your walls and floor, as well as the main pieces of furniture in the room. 

The 30 percent shade supports the dominant color, while giving the room visual interest. You could paint an accent wall, for example, or the secondary shade could be displayed in your window coverings, an area rug or smaller furniture pieces.

As for the 10 percent accent color, you can have fun with decorative accessories, throw pillows, lighting and artwork.

Does Your Home Décor Have to Follow the 60-30-10 Color Rule?

The 60-30-10 color rule is really more of an interior designer trick than an actual rule. You can use this decorating method as a guideline, but you certainly don’t have to be exact in your proportions.

Sometimes, however, rules are meant to be broken — and there are ways to break this color rule and still achieve a balanced, beautiful interior design. Try choosing two accent colors instead of one, for example, or go with a monochromatic scheme and make your dominant, secondary and accent colors varying shades rather than three separate colors.

You can also make up your own decorating color rule. Experiment with using different shades, and if you find that a proportion of 40-30-10-10 looks best, go with it – color balance is not an exact science.

If you still can’t decide which colors to use, consider seeking some expert home décor advice from the professional interior design staff at Guild Hall Home Furnishings. 

Our knowledgeable, experienced designers can help you create a beautiful, balanced color scheme and guide you in finding the perfect fine furnishings, custom furniture and decorative accessories to express your style. Visit the Guild Hall Furniture Store & Interior Design showroom in Salt Lake City, Utah, today, for help with all your home décor needs.

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