ARE you stuck in a colour rut because you're not brave enough to plunge into the dazzling array of shades that could transform your home?

Maybe you need some Colour Psychology in your life, writes Gabrielle Fagan.

Devised by psychologist Angela Wright, the method, which uses seasonal colour palettes found in nature, aims to help identify the colour preferences and styles of each personality group.

"This is a real game-changer if you've ever faced painful procrastination over a paint colour, or agonised over an investment buy," says Sophie Robinson, best known as a judge on BBC Two's The Great British Interior Design Challenge.

"Colour's fashionable currently, with two strong trends - one for jewel, rich shades like teal, forest green and orange, or so-called gelato shades, like mint, lilac and pink.

"Sadly, so many people get overwhelmed by the choices, they often just chicken out of colour altogether and stick to neutrals like grey or white," said Sophie, who has teamed up with Habitat to launch a campaign using Colour Psychology. She says it gives people "a framework, so they can clarify what they like and confidently pull a scheme together".

Brighton-based interior designer Sophie continued: "They'll be able to combine colours, patterns, textures, furniture and artwork, and create the feel they want for a room.

"What I really love is that this concept is actually very instinctive. It gets us out of our heads and back in touch with our gut, so we can make more emotional and bolder design choices, which I'm all for. Even better, the result will be a home that resonates more deeply with a person's taste and personality and, more importantly, will be one they won't tire of."

- Where to start

"Decide which season's colour palette - spring, summer, autumn or winter - most appeals to you and resonates with your character," said Sophie. "You may like another palette as well, which is quite common. For instance, I'm a spring personality in the main, but I also like the strong shades of the autumn look, so that's my subordinate palette. In terms of design, you can mix any two together quite successfully,.

"Once you've identified which season you are, or the season you want your room to feel like, the choices you make in terms of colour palette, fabrics, accessories and furniture flows much more easily. The result is a room that feels as good as it looks."

- If spring is your colour personality...

Light and bright sum up the spring palette, and for this colour personality type Sophie says: "You're the sort of person who's energetic, full of life, young at heart and optimistic with a positive outlook. You love anything cute.

"You favour warm and clear colours, so they have a lightness to them. You'll embrace new design, so styling will feel modern yet welcoming, and as a feature you like busy prints bursting with pattern and energy.

"Clean lines, pale wood or painted furniture appeal, as does a little sparkle from glass and glossy surfaces, complemented by smooth, shiny textures."

- If summer is your colour personality...

"If you're graceful, elegant and reserved in character, then you belong to the summer colour tribe," says Robinson. "You have a love of nature and your overall look is understated, never showy, with muted, subtle colours and painterly, flowing patterns.

"You can interpret it in a soft, romantic, floaty way - but with a touch of formality and symmetrical arrangements and structure. Attracted by tradition, you'll often look to the past for inspiration for your look, and favour aged patinas and distressed finishes."

- If autumn is your colour personality...

"Autumn types are organic, robust and abundant," said Sophie. "They're passionate people with a strong connection to nature, attracted to rich colours and furniture, with a substantial or textured feel.

"They want their spaces to feel welcoming, cosy and relaxed, so you'll see lots of collections of sentimental importance, and their love of art and education means they'll also have a library of books on display. Authenticity is an important element for them, and they like a rustic style, and anything celebrating craftsmanship and heritage."

- If winter is your colour personality...

"You love drama and strong design statements," says Sophie. "You need your home to be a reflection of your self-assurance and are likely to choose pioneering or iconic designs. Your colour palette's sharp, cool and bright, and you enhance the effect with striking patterns, like geometrics.

"In terms of style, there's a coolness and attention to detail throughout, and you're drawn to the latest tech or luxury furnishings. This look can be interpreted in a minimalist way or with a dramatic maximalist scheme."

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