Red is a fabulous colour for adding energy to a space, face or outfit. In the rainbow of light, red is the first colour we see. It has an energy signature with a wavelength shorter than the other colours. Red can be used to exert dominance or enrich a palette. It is almost always perceived as a warm colour, though many reds actually have a cool base. If you find it challenging to wear red, chances are, you are using the wrong red for your skin tone – because the right red will make you come alive!
There are many words to describe red: true red, tomato red, fire-engine red, crimson, scarlett, burgundy, maroon, rust – each of them denoting a different kind of red with slightly different qualities. Red is used to denote danger both by humans and animals alike. The colours we use for warning signs – yellow, black and red – are the same colours found on poisonous snakes, spiders and insects. In fact, these colours are so effective, that in nature, mimic animals have evolved that share the same warning colours but are completely harmless. They pretend to be dangerous by advertising with bold red, black and yellow!
The purpose of red, in nature and in fashion, is to get attention! It is the ultimate, eye-grabbing hue – designed to draw the eye throughout our evolution. So, whether it be on your person, in a room or in the garden, to draw focus – use red.
In decor, think objets d’art, appliances, cushions and flowers to give that colour statement pop without overwhelming a space. An entire wall or set of drapes might be a bit intense, and raise the energy levels of the room considerably – making it harder to relax in. It does, however, feel very regal to immerse yourself in red.
Red is sexy! Whether its a sleek kettle or a painted toe, the colour red invokes something primal within us all – this is one of those colours where more, is often less! Use it sparingly and wisely and you will create a powerful statement wherever you choose to put red!