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The 60-30-10 rule: How to use it to create a balanced colour palette

  • Colours
Jun 21, 2023
Yellow Living Room Sofa Set - Beautiful Homes

A simple balance of colours can give an entire room a whole new look!

Are you tired of staring at your walls and feeling drab or uninspired by your home’s interior design? One of the easiest ways to breathe new life into a space is by updating its colour palette. However, choosing colours can be overwhelming. With so many shades and hues available to us, how do you know which colours will work well together? That's where the 60-30-10 rule comes in.

 

WHAT IS THE 60-30-10 RULE IN INTERIOR DESIGN?

The 60-30-10 rule is a popular guideline used by interior designers to create a balanced colour palette for any space. The rule simply states that 60% of the room should be decorated with the dominant colour, 30% with the secondary colour, and 10% with an accent colour. If envisioned correctly, the 60-30-10 design rule can create a balanced and visually pleasing colour palette in your home interior design.

 

THE BASICS OF THE 60-30-10 RULE

Before we dive into how to use the 60-30-10 rule, let's go over the basics of the rule. While 60% of the space should be decorated with the dominant colour, 30% with the secondary colour, 10% with the accent colour, what do these colours mean?

Dominant Colour

The dominant colour is the colour that will be used the most in the space. It is the colour that will set the tone for the room and create the overall mood. The dominant colour can be a neutral shade, like beige or grey, or a bolder one, like red or blue.

 

Secondary Colour

The secondary colour is the colour that will be used to complement the dominant colour. It should be different enough from the dominant colour to create contrast, but similar enough to create a paired cohesive look. The secondary colour can be a lighter or darker shade of the dominant colour, or a completely different hue altogether.

Living Room Corner Set - Beautiful Homes

Image courtesy, Asian Paints

Accent Colour

The accent colour is the pop of colour that adds interest to the colour palette. It's the colour that will be used sparingly, but strategically, to draw attention to certain areas of the room. The accent colour can be a bright or bold colour that complements the dominant and secondary colours.
 

Blue Master Bed - Beautiful Homes

Image courtesy, Nivasa

Choosing Your Colour Palette

The first step in using the 60-30-10 rule is to choose your colour palette. Start by selecting your dominant colour. Since this will be the colour that covers the majority of the space, it is important to choose a colour that you love as it will set the tone for the room. If you're having trouble choosing a colour, think about the mood you want to create in the space. Do you want it to be calm and relaxing, or bold and energising? Once you have your dominant colour, you can move on to selecting your secondary and accent colours.

 

When selecting your secondary colour, consider the colour wheel. Colours that are opposite each other on the colour wheel, like blue and orange, create contrast and are visually appealing together. Colours that are next to each other on the colour wheel, like blue and green, create a harmonious and calming effect.

Your accent colour is where you can have a little fun and add a pop of bright boldness to the room. When selecting your accent colour, think about the mood you want to create and choose a colour that complements your dominant and secondary colours. For example, if your dominant colour is grey and your secondary colour is blue, you could add a pop of yellow as your accent colour.
 

Applying the 60-30-10 Rule

Now that you have your colour palette, it's time to apply the 60-30-10 rule. Remember, 60% of the space should be decorated with the dominant colour, 30% with the secondary colour, and 10% with the accent colour.

 

One of the easiest ways to apply the 60-30-10 rule is through your furniture and décor. For example, if your dominant colour is beige, you could use beige for your walls, curtains and sofa (60%), choose a secondary colour, like blue, for your accent chairs and throw pillows (30%), and an accent colour, like yellow, for your decorative accessories, such as vases and artwork (10%).

Coral Pink Sofa Set for Living Room - Beautiful Homes

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Beige Sofa Chair - Beautiful Homes

Image courtesy, Asian Paints

Another way to apply the 60-30-10 rule is through your flooring and textiles. For example, if your dominant colour is grey, you could choose a grey carpet or hardwood flooring (60%), use grey bedding and curtains (30%), and add a pop of colour with your accent colour through throw pillows and decorative accessories (10%).

 

The 60-30-10 rule can also be applied to your wall colour. For example, you could paint 60% of your walls with your dominant colour, use your secondary colour for a feature wall or wainscoting (30%), and add an accent colour through decorative accessories like artwork or a statement piece of furniture (10%).

Remember, the 60-30-10 rule is a guideline, not a strict rule, and can be tweaked around a little. It's important to have fun with your colour palette and experiment with different shades and hues to find what works best for you and your space.
 

THE BEST SERVICE FOR DESIGNING THE PERFECT INDIAN HOME WITH THE 60-30-10 RULE

If you’re renovating your house and trying to work out the best 60-30-10 rules for your space or can’t find a starting point for the perfect colours to choose, you’ll need a reliable and seasoned designer to help you along the way. While we all dream of a beautiful home, taking time out of our daily schedules and finding the right people to work with is often easier said than done. With this thought in mind, India’s largest paint giant Asian Paints created the Beautiful Homes Service. Enlisting expert interior designers, who’ve worked across the length and breadth of the industry, the Beautiful Homes Service takes care of executing every task in your home renovation from start to finish. 

Royal Blue Bedroom Set – Beautiful Homes

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This ensures a hassle-free and time-saving experience for anyone with a vision to remodel their home (or redesign a particular room), but lacks the ideas, time or patience to coordinate and project manage between the army of people required to finish the job.
 

Yellow Living Room Sofa Set - Beautiful Homes

Image courtesy, Asian Paints

A ONE-STOP SHOP FOR A BALANCED 60-30-10 COLOUR PALETTE

For the most interesting, well-designed décor products that follow the 60-30-10 rule under one roof, step into an AP Homes store in your city. With a curation of products and solutions from a family of brands, AP Homes is your one-stop shop to create a home or space that tells your unique story. Whether you’re looking to choose well-designed objects to pair with the 60-30-10 design rule or products and finishes to complement your home interior design, AP Homes houses everything from furnishings and fixtures to home automation solutions.

A UNIQUE PAINT COLOUR OR WALLPAPER FOR THE PERFECT 60-30-10 COLOUR RULE

If you’re trying to find the right hue for any room in the house, first order a colour catalogue from Asian Paints to physically view a range of shade cards around the light in a space. Sometimes, you could pick a unique texture or material for a wall, but not find a similarly striking or complementing colour to continue following the 60-30-10 colour rule. If a shade of paint doesn’t do the trick, consider adding prints along the other walls or surfaces. For a different aesthetic, you can play around with textures, prints and patterns with a range of Nilaya wall coverings by Asian Paints—our go-to most-trusted brand. You could even bring in a designer twist with wallpapers by fashion designer Sabyasachi or home décor label Good Earth; or choose the mesmerising Colour of the Year for 2023, Silver Escapade.

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