Red Is The New Black

How to Get The Best Out of A Red Rug

When you are trying to put together a color scheme we often fall back on black as a go-to color to match everything, but it is time we consider all of the possibilities that red can bring to a space. When you have chosen the right shade of red, it can go with anything.

In many ways, red can act as a neutral. Neutrals are often described as colors that help to unify a diverse color scheme or can stand alone as the primary focus of a design, and this describes the use of red in a room perfectly. Just like the idea that a red shoe can go with anything, the right red can be incorporated in any room.

Color Harmonies

Looking at a color wheel can be a great step to help you decide how you want to incorporate red into your color scheme.

There are four commonly used color combinations to achieve the most harmonious look. This includes complementary colors, analogous colors, monochromatic colors, and triadic colors.

Color Wheel
Using A Color Wheel Can Help You When Incorporating Colors In Your Home.

Complimentary Colors

Using the color complimentary is one of the most well-known ways to pair colors. Look directly across the color wheel from the color you are selecting, to find your complementary color. For red this would be green.

This helps to create an eye-catching color scheme. To make this color scheme really wow, stay away from the primary versions of the color you are choosing to create a more elevated pairing. Otherwise, you may end up with a Christmas-themed room.

Complementary Colors
Complementary Colors

Analogous Colors

An analogous color scheme is one where you use three colors that are beside each other on the color wheel. Typically, when using an analogous color scheme one color is made dominant and the other two work as accent colors.

An example of this could be using red, red-orange, and red-violet. Color schemes like this often appear very natural because it is usually the way that colors appear in nature. This helps us to see them as harmonious and makes this type of color scheme very calming.

Monochromatic Colors

Monochromatic color schemes use the same color in various shades, tints, and tones.

Monochromatic color schemes tend to look sophisticated and are very pleasing to the eye. Achieving a well-designed monochromatic room can be challenging to achieve the perfect balance. This should involve incorporating a balance of cool and warm versions of the color.

monotones of red
Monotones of Red

Triadic Colors

A triadic color scheme uses three colors that are equally spaced around the color wheel. An example of this is red-yellow-blue.

This color scheme typically uses one color as the main feature and highlights the other two as accent colors. This type of color harmony can be challenging to achieve because the contrasting colors can look busy, so it is important to find the right balance of the colors.

Triadic Colors
Triadic Colors

Different Shades

The different colors of red are almost unlimited; crimson, scarlet, maroon, cherry, tomato, cardinal red, terracotta-red, and the list goes on. The variations all come from the hue and value of the color. This makes it possible to find the right red, to suit any space.

The wide range of red is what makes it such a versatile color. Some shades appear joyful and fun while others give off classy and refined appearances.


Red is one of the warmest colors but the makeup of the color you choose can bring in elements of cool tones or be completely warm toned.

Choosing a color with the wrong undertone is often where people go wrong when matching colors. The main color, and what we would describe a color as, is called the mass tone. A true red would also have consistent red undertones.

When the undertones vary this is what creates different varieties of a color, a red with orange undertones would be a poppy color, and a red with a purple undertone could be a magenta color.

Afghan Rug In Living Room
Bring In Warm And Cool Tones Together To Create A Balanced Space.

Creating a harmonious design includes bringing in warm and cool tones throughout your design. This will make the space appear balanced.


The best thing you can do is explore the different varieties of red before you settle on one. The value of a color refers to the lightness and darkness of it. The lighter a color is the closer it is to white while the darker it is the closer it is to black.

The different values of red can impact the feelings that it evokes. As red is a very emotionally intense color, a light red can represent joy, passion, and love while dark red can represent courage and leadership.

Mixing light and dark colors in a room can be a balancing act. Some designers recommend a general 80-20 rule where 80% of colors in a room are light and the remaining 20% are dark.

Having the right amount of dark colors helps to ground the room and makes the space feel warmer. This ratio helps to create a balance that seems unified.

Afghan Rug
The Right Amount Of Dark Colors Makes The Space Grounded And Feel Warmer.


The importance of texture in a space is astronomical. Texture is what makes it possible to have a monochrome room that does not feel boring. The way that texture interacts with color to create varying visual and tactile qualities helps to bring depth to a space.

Texture affects the way we see a color and can impact the way a color absorbs and reflects light making it appear lighter or darker. The texture within a rug helps to break up larger masses of color and can add depth and interest.

Having the appropriate lighting to showcase the texture in your rooms is also important. For example, a dark color can absorb light, making shadows in them less visible.

To get the most out of pieces like this you will want to compliment them with enough lighting. Because of this, a design with a lot of dark pieces is best suited in a space that has a lot of natural light. If you have a darker room you may want to choose lighter red colors.

Afghan Rug
Texture Can Impact The Way A Color Absorbs And Reflect Lights Making The Rug Appear Lighter Or Darker.

On a final note, whatever color scheme you choose for your home consider incorporating red in your space. It will help to bring a new level of depth and interest to your home and create a fresh design.

What color harmonies do you like the best and how are you going to bring more red into your home?

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