A colour wheel is a tool used by designers across multiple disciplines including fashion, art and of course, interiors. It is a tool that helps select and illustrate colour relationships. For interiors, the colour wheel is instrumental in giving confidence in choosing colour schemes.
The colour wheel depicts primary colours, secondary colours and tertiary colours which can be defined as:
The three primary colours cannot be made by mixing any other colours together and consist of red, yellow and blue.
Secondary colours are made by mixing two primary colours and include green, orange and violet.
There are six tertiary colours that are created by mixing one primary colour with one adjacent secondary colour. These are known as red-orange, red-violet, yellow-orange, yellow-green, blue-violet and blue green.
A colour wheel also illustrates the tints, tones and shades of each hue – this can be particularly useful when selecting colours for a harmonious scheme and also depicts the range that can be used within a monochromatic scheme.
Although often used interchangeably, these terms can be defined as:
A colour that has been lightened with white
A colour that has been muted with grey
A colour that has been darkened with black.