Choosing Colors for Your Blog Site - dummies

Choosing Colors for Your Blog Site

By Melissa Culbertson

Colors matter on your blog site. According to The Institute for Color Research, between 62 and 90 percent of a person’s assessment of an environment is based on color alone. Color can also improve readership by 40 percent.

So what colors jump to mind when you think about certain brands? How about UPS? Brown, of course. What about Coke? Red. Although you don’t have to employ a strong color association, colors can help you define your overall brand.

Colors can also help establish a tone, or mood, with your readers. If your writing style is punchy and humorous, then bright, vivid colors would work better with your blog design than somber colors like industrial gray or a pale blue.

Just as certain fonts go well together, so do certain colors. Finding color harmony can be as simple as understanding one tool: the color wheel. After you understand how to create color harmony using the color wheel, creating color schemes for your blog design is much less of a mystery.

Here are the basic schemes created using the color wheel as a tool:

  • Analogous color scheme: Uses three or more colors that sit next to each other on the color wheel.

  • Monochromatic color scheme: Uses tints, tones, and values within the same family.

  • Triadic color scheme: Uses three colors that are evenly spaced around the color wheel.

  • Square color scheme: Uses four colors evenly spaced around the color wheel.

  • Complementary color scheme: Uses colors opposite of one another on the color wheel.

  • Split complementary color scheme: Uses one color paired with two colors on both sides of that color’s direct complementary color.

  • Tetrad (or rectangular) color scheme: Uses four colors arranged by two complementary pairs.

  • Diad color scheme: Uses two colors that are two colors apart on the color wheel, with one color skipped in between.


In the everyday world, you may not talk about tetrad or diad color schemes, but most folks can relate to warm and cool colors. Looking at the color wheel again, you can see how the colors are divided into warm and cool:

  • Warm: Red, orange, yellow, and variations of those colors

  • Cool: Green, blue, purple, and variations of those colors


And not to complicate life, but you can also have “cooler” oranges or “warmer” purples. For example, a cool color can have red, orange, or yellow undertones, and a warm color can have green, blue, or purple undertones.

And here is why color choice matters: Both warm and cool colors can evoke both positive or negative emotions. Warmer colors can evoke a sense of anything from coziness and happiness (sunny yellow) to anger and aggression (blood red). Cooler colors can bring a sense of calmness and relaxation (sky blue) or can feel indifferent or subdued (steel gray).