Before you ask the question “what colors should I paint my office?”, first ask: “What am I trying to accomplish?” Your goals will directly affect the strategy you use with your colors. With this in mind, here are two key elements designers use to select colors for your office environment, that will help you determine which colors are right for your needs.
Know the Atmosphere or Environment You Would Like to Create
You must have in mind what type of Atmosphere or Environment you would like to create for your space. A lot of times this could be determined by simply asking yourself “What feeling or mood would I like to create in my space?” or “What type of environment would I like my patients to walk into?” Color evokes emotion and feeling and can create different moods.
Most likely you will have an overall look, feel or theme for your space; however, within your space you may have different areas or zones that will have different energies. For example your reception will probably have a different feeling i.e. it may be more of a community space, with excitement and energy with people sharing successes, talking about workshops, while your adjusting space may be more restful, quite and relaxing.
To create an environment that is energetic and exciting, you could use a palate that included bold and vibrant colors, especially as accents, with high contrast.
To create an environment that is more restful, quiet and relaxing, you could use more soothing colors with less contrast.
Begin looking through magazines, books, online publications of other offices, or designed spaces in general for inspiration photos. Make copies of ones that appeal to you, write down why it appeals to you or descriptive words that represent what the image has that you would like your office to have. Look through interior design magazine or books in a library or bookstore. Search offices, receptions, exam rooms, massage rooms, children’s rooms for images on the web. But just remember inspiration can come from anywhere, so just keep your eyes open. Take photos, collect images and inspiration where ever you find it, just remember documenting it will help you be able to express it to a professional…a picture speak a thousand words!
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Know Your Target Market
Knowing your target market is the key to your business strategy, therefore you should know your target market and they should be who you want to appeal to in every aspect of your business, including the design of your office. So when you ask the question, “What colors should I paint my office to make it warm and inviting?” It depends…who are your inviting in? There are many elements that make different groups of people feel comfortable: culture, geographic region, age demographic, socioeconomic status, beliefs and past experience, just to name a few. You couldn’t possibly know all of them for your target market but you could at least have some broad idea of what appeals to your target market. Doing market research on your target market would greatly help you in determining their preferences. For example, though you want your office to feel “warm and inviting” the warm colors on the color wheel can vary greatly in saturation.
If your target market is elderly, a warm office may be a soft, subtle warm gold, with low contrasting colors, to give a feeling of warmth and comfort.
If your target market is middle age mothers, you may want a medium saturated color with complimentary neutrals and an accent color in medium saturation for a pop of color.
If your target market is young adults or children, you would want a more saturated, vivid warm color.
You can use color in your office to speak to and relate to your target market, customizing your space to appeal to them. You can combine that knowledge with the ideas you have of your overall atmosphere, to have a truly customized office color.
Overall, color has both negative and a positive affect on people. It can help your patient feel comfortable and peaceful, as long as you do it correctly.
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