White walls, grey carpet, white ceiling acoustical tiles and metallic grey cubicle panels and black tasks chairs, sounds like someone's office? Imagine if you can transform it into something that reflects your team culture, now that is truly inspiring isn't it?

Why is color mood important in the workplace? 

Color is a powerful tool for brand communication.  In the previous post about branding, color is a simple and inexpensive way to express your company identity, culture and style. It quickly grabs one's attention and leaves a lasting impression of your workplace. But color has an effect on our moods too. It lifts our spirits, energizes or gives us a sense of comfort. Color moods is about a general atmosphere of a space, ambiance or a feeling. How it affects productivity depends on the how each individual takes in visual stimuli and the tasks at hand. Some people get visually distracted in working in a spaces with lots of red which is a stronger and aggressive color. While others have no problem working in that environment.  I'd like to compare this to listening to music while studying for an exam. Some are capable of carrying out the task in the midst of audio stimulation while others like silence. Although productivity and mood are independent of each other, color moods brings life to our workplace. And who would not want that?

There are many colors that elicit certain moods. Here are 6 common color moods that will surely get you inspired to update your space….

  • Symbolic of excitement, anger and passion, red is our best bet for communicating intensity and strength. Elegance, and richness are represented through the deeper reds like burgundy, it reminds me of a bottle of  red wine. On a playful note, fuschias or hot pinks are youthful, exciting and festive. 

  • The light, heat and vitality from the sun energizes us the whole day is what yellow brings to the table. Yellow represents sun, furthermore, it communicates enlightenment. In contrast, to energy, it also symbolizes comfort. It reminds me of comfort food like warm macaroni and cheese, buttered popcorn or golden french fries. Although yellow can communicate easy going and simplicity, gold on the other hand communicates luxury and value. 

  • Soothing, restful and refreshing,  are just a few to describe green. There are so many varieties of green, from teal, aqua, turquoise emerald to dark greens. It also symbolizes harmony growth and well being. 

  • Tranquility, cool and classic, blue is your all around color. It is mostly used to communicate peace in light hues, on the other spectrum it is also about high energy through the brighter hues. Strength and reliability lean towards the deep navy blues.


  • Warm, natural and organic, brown often times relates to earth and the outdoors. With undertones of yellow, red and orange, it becomes appetizing like mocha, caramel and chocolate mousse. 

  • A combination of 2 colors, purple can draw passion or serenity depending on whether its leaning towards red or blue.  


I would like to create a color scheme but I am not good at it, where do I start?

  • As mentioned above, color has an effect on one's mood but may not necessarily affect one's productivity. It is also not a one size fits all. So, designate a neutral paint color for your ceiling and general walls and an accent color on few key areas like reception area, or a wall inside a private office space or at your break room. Have your team accessorize their space through accent furniture pieces like ottomans, cushion tops of mobile pedestals or other desk accessories with colors that positively stimulate them. 
  • If you are buying furniture, check out their standard finishes first before specifying your own material. Standard finishes, like fabric and laminates are tested materials and proven to perform with the furniture, it makes selection easier and also keeps the cost down. It also expedites the process of manufacturing and delivery. While specifying your own material gives a little bit more customized look, it can also take a longer time for the furniture to be manufactured and delivered. First, the fabric has to be tested and proven that it will perform with the furniture. If it gets approved, then the fabric has to be ordered. Those 2 steps take time and if time is what you don't have, then the standard finishes are there to make selections easier. Turnstone has made this process even easier by creating a 4 designer palettes, from warm to cool colors to choose from.
  • Graphic design like digital wall coverings, and even artwork are a good representation of mood and also branding.

We've used color moods as a guide to select colors for our home, warm colors in the kitchen to represent vibrancy and appetite, and cool colors in the bathrooms for relaxation. The same idea goes for workplace design, color mood elicits visual stimulation that can help us carry out through the day. Have you surveyed your office on choosing the right accent colors for your office? What colors did you end up with?


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