Once you have a wheel with these basic colours arranged on it, there are three main types of decorating scheme that you can create using three fail-safe colour combinations:
MONOCHROMATIC schemes use tones of the same colour in varying hues. This scheme works wonderfully in rooms where you want to create a calm, tranquil setting. Try painting your ceiling a very pale blue, your walls a mid-blue and your woodwork a rich, navy blue.
HARMONIOUS schemes feature colours that sit directly next to one another on the colour wheel. These work beautifully together in a room scheme. Mix blues with purples, or oranges with reds.
COMPLEMENTARY OR CONTRASTING COLOUR schemes use hues that are directly opposite one another on the colour wheel. These always look good together, despite the fact that they contrast. This scheme delivers an exciting interplay of colour and, depending on the strength of the colours you select, the look you create can range from playful to dynamic. For example, blue looks brilliant with orange, and yellow works wonderfully with purple.
Once you understand the colour wheel and have mastered these basic rules, you can experiment with a wide variety of colour combinations and put together stunning colour schemes with confidence.