The psychology of orange in workplace design

Janet Lowe discusses the connotations of the colour orange and how contractors can use the vibrant hue to evoke positivity in workplace design.

COLOUR is a powerful communication tool. It can impact moods, feelings and behaviours, as well as enrich or inhibit an environment. Here I’ll discuss the connotations of the colour orange and how contractors can use the vibrant hue to evoke positivity in workplace design.

According to psychological studies, the colour orange radiates feelings of joy, excitement and optimism. A warm and inviting colour, orange is physically and mentally stimulating, therefore its presence in interior design can get people thinking and talking - sparking enthusiastic responses and inspiring creativity. It’s perhaps no surprise then that the use of the colour orange is often used within office design.

The power of colour in the workplace subconsciously affects the brain, impacting on productivity and how employees work. The colour orange can draw people together, encourage conversations and keep communications flowing, creating an ambience that ensures employees remain energised and motivated.

However, as the hue can be overpowering if used heavily, it’s recommended that orange is used as an accent colour to draw attention to an area, perhaps in meeting rooms and collaborative working spaces, as subtle influences of bold colour could inspire workers at pinnacle moments.

With orange increasingly used in interior design, it’s little wonder that Living Coral, a peachy orange shade, was chosen as Pantone’s Colour of the Year for 2019. Sociable and spirited, the animated and life-affirming coral hue with a golden undertone energises and enlivens with a softer edge.

The vibrant yet mellow shade symbolises human interaction and social communication and is influencing interior products being launched onto the market.

With all of this in mind, there are various ways the colour orange can be integrated into interior workspaces and help incorporate dynamism into the office, and one way to do this is to start with the floor.

Forbo Flooring Systems’ new contemporary, high-end carpet tile collection, Tessera Chroma, features a spectrum of orange shades within its colour palette. The Camisole, Tangerine and Calypso colourways have a subtle blended effect, thanks to a mix of three different yarns in each shade, carefully composed to be softer and chalkier, creating a pleasing colour balance.

This has helped to provide a warm aesthetic and allows contractors to playfully clash shades and create eclectic colour combinations that can bring out the desired personality of workspaces.

There’s no doubt colour plays a fundamental role in the way we perceive the world around us. With such connotations of the colour orange effecting productivity, getting the balance right can be challenging.

However, most reputable flooring manufacturers are well versed in the impact of design, colour, pattern and texture and will be able to advise on creative solutions to fulfil any design brief.
Janet Lowe is head of Marketing UK and Ireland at Forbo Flooring Systems