About a decade ago, I did my internship in a free-spirited and young marketing agency. Whenever we needed to come up with creative solutions to a problem, we would have brainstorm sessions in a designated meeting room.
The room was bright red and yellow. Upon entering the room for the very first time, I felt a complete shift in mood.
In the very start I felt a bit… anxious.
We aren’t used to being in bright colored rooms. After adjusting to the new color climate however, I actually felt remarkably more alert and energized.
The experience stuck with me. Later, I asked the founder of the agency how he came up with such a design.
The answer was not that his interior designer was high when designing the room (this definitely crossed my mind) but that the room was decorated that way in order to spark creativity and encourage involvement in creative discussions.
Red for attention to detail
The marketing agency manager wasn't making this up. According to Psychology today, presence of the color red can boost performance by up to 31%.
The theory behind this is that red signals that we need to pay attention to something.
That’s why stop signs are red.
Blood is red.
Red lights are.. well.. red.
When confronted with this color - our brain will persuade us to be extra cautious.
Many major brands such as Coca Cola take advantage of this. (Come to think of it, at Madd Tools we’re guilty as charged as well ;D )
Blue for sparking creativity
Blue, on the other hand, should spark creativity.
As the color of open skies and the endless ocean, we instinctively associate the color blue with freedom. Life without boundaries. Adventure. Limitless. Boldness.
And indirectly - with expressiveness and creativity.
Yellow as a natural stimulant
Entering a Yellow room is proven to give you an energy boost. The color intensifies emotions and is thought to make you happy because it's associated with the sun.
It is advised to use the color yellow sparingly as it can be quite intense and overwhelming.
Red and yellow are examples of warm colors. These colors are known to stimulate neurological activity.
The downside is that they can be overwhelming as negative emotions can also be intensified.
If you’re doing crafts that can easily frustrate you, for example, excessive presence of warm colors can reinforce that state of mind.
For this reason, it’s advised to balance these colors with cool colors.
A cool color, like blue or teal, provides a more relaxing effect and serves as the ideal counterpart to a warm color.
Interestingly, we don’t need to completely paint our craft room walls in a certain color to achieve the these creativity and energy boosts.
According to Psychology Today, we can use the colors sparingly as accents and compliment them with a neutral white and achieve a more balanced state of mind.
In fact, it might not even be necessary to paint your craft room wall at all.
Everyday tools like the sketch paper you use, your sewing machine or your scissors could also be red or blue.
We are confronted with these tools for a considerable amount of time in each craft session, so it’s only obvious that they will influence our mood.
Which color should you use in your craft room?
As explained earlier, different colors have different benefits - so there’s no obvious answer to that question. I’d say that it depends on three factors:
1. The type of activities you do in your craft room
If your hobby requires bold creativity, I recommend an emphasis on blue.
Examples of these are designing dresses, some forms of artistic painting, sketching, writing song lyrics etc.
If your hobby mainly requires attention to detail, I recommend an emphasis on red.
Examples of these crafts are rather technical, such as sewing, knitting or portrait painting.
2. Your personality
It’s also important to know yourself.
If you’re a very calm person and not easily agitated, you might pull off a big ‘orange influence’, for example, better than someone who’s short tempered.
That person might be better served by using just a hint of orange and balancing it out with a bigger amount of light blue.
3. The size and lay-out of your craft room
It’s noteworthy that warm colors might make the space appear smaller while cool colors increase the feeling of space.
If you’re in a small craft room I would generally advise you not to completely surround yourself with intense warm colors as they might make you feel claustrophobic.
This is especially the case if there’s a lot of ‘stuff’ in your craft room.
In most cases, you’ll need a bit of both - it is not a bad thing to include multiple colors in your design.
Spark your creativity with (painted) pegboard
Creativity starts with a clean and organised work space. For that reason - I recommend you to get some sort of easy-access storage system that will make it easy for you to keep the tools off your desk and have everything you need within arms’ reach.
Pegboard is a an affordable and handy option.
If you don't feel like giving your walls an overhaul, you can paint your pegboard instead.
- It’s less permanent than the wall
- It’s the place where you’ll focus your eyes at the start of every craft project
- It usually takes up a considerable amount of space in your craft room, thus a big color influence
- Pegboard is very easy to paint.
By the way... in our free eBook you'll find handy, space-saving pegboard tips to save huge amount of storage space in your craft room. And it's free to download for our readers.