COVID-19 Update: We are currently shipping orders daily. However, due to transit disruptions in some geographies, deliveries may be delayed. To provide all customers with timely access to content, we are offering 50% off Science and Technology Print & eBook bundle options. Terms & conditions.
Colour Design - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9781845699727, 9780857095534

Colour Design

1st Edition

Theories and Applications

Editor: J Best
Paperback ISBN: 9780081016480
Hardcover ISBN: 9781845699727
eBook ISBN: 9780857095534
Imprint: Woodhead Publishing
Published Date: 6th June 2012
Page Count: 672
Sales tax will be calculated at check-out Price includes VAT/GST
Price includes VAT/GST

Institutional Subscription

Secure Checkout

Personal information is secured with SSL technology.

Free Shipping

Free global shipping
No minimum order.

Table of Contents

Contributor contact details

Woodhead Publishing Series in Textiles

Part I: Colour and colour perception

Chapter 1: What is colour?


1.1 Introduction

1.2 Visible light

1.3 Organising colours

1.4 Conclusions

Chapter 2: Variability in normal and defective colour vision: consequences for occupational environments


2.1 Introduction

2.2 Vision information channels

2.3 The concept of the luminous efficiency function

2.4 Photoreceptor contrasts and the CIE (x,y) chromaticity chart

2.5 Individual differences in colour vision

2.6 Methods of assessing colour vision loss

2.7 Anomaloscope variability in the parameters of the yellow match

2.8 Colour assessment and diagnostics (CAD) test

2.9 Colour in occupational environments

2.10 Colour in healthcare

2.11 Conclusions

2.12 Sources of further information and advice

2.13 Acknowledgements

Chapter 3: Colour illusions and the human visual system


3.1 Introduction

3.2 Illusions in the context of the human visual system

3.3 From isolated colour to colour in context: some experiments

3.4 Examples of the different groups of colour illusions

3.5 Conclusions

Chapter 4: Colour psychology: the emotional effects of colour perception


4.1 Introduction

4.2 Colour preference: the longitudinal perspective 1970–2009

4.3 Colour and psycho-physiological arousal

4.4 Colour and subjective time estimation

4.5 Colour and the subjective feeling of warmth

4.6 Conclusions and further reading

Chapter 5: Understanding colour perception and preference


5.1 Introduction

5.2 The origins and uses of colour vision

5.3 Colour preference in humans

5.4 Colour preference in animals

5.5 Physiological effects of background and illumination colours: ‘warm’ vs ‘cool’ colours

5.6 Conclusions

Chapter 6: Predicting responses to colour


6.1 Introduction

6.2 A different approach

6.3 The Wright Theory

6.4 The process of colour specifying

6.5 Conclusions

Part II: Measuring and describing colour

Chapter 7: International standards for colour


7.1 Introduction

7.2 CIE standard colorimetric observers

7.3 CIE illuminants and sources

7.4 Standards for measuring reflecting and transmitting materials

7.5 Expressing colour in terms of chromaticity coordinates

7.6 Other descriptors of chromaticity

7.7 Colour difference evaluation

7.8 Colour appearance

7.9 Calibration, traceability and measurement uncertainty

7.10 Future trends

7.11 Conclusions

7.12 Sources of further information and advice

Chapter 8: Colour description and communication


8.1 Introduction

8.2 Colour order systems

8.3 Named colour systems

8.4 Colour naming

8.5 Instrumental measurement of colour

8.6 Digital imaging systems

8.7 Colour constancy

8.8 Metamerism

8.9 Colour standards

8.10 Colour difference

8.11 Computation of colour co-ordinates

8.12 Derivation of the CIE 1931 standard observer

8.13 Future trends

8.14 Sources of further information and advice

Chapter 9: Colour naming for colour communication


9.1 Introduction

9.2 Mapping the terrain

9.3 Previous colour naming studies

9.4 Conducting a colour naming experiment over the internet

9.5 An online colour naming model

9.6 Colour naming selection guidelines

9.7 Conclusions and future directions

9.9 Acknowledgements

Chapter 10: Colour specification and visual approval methods for textiles


10.1 Introduction

10.2 Global colour supply chain

10.3 Colour communication

10.4 Colour specification

10.5 Colour vision

10.6 Tools for colour assessment

10.7 Conclusions

10.8 Acknowledgement

10.9 Sources of further information

Chapter 11: Colour management and approval methods in lithographic printing


11.1 Introduction

11.2 Case study: typical procedures of a commercial print company

11.3 International printing standards

11.4 Colour management in practice

11.5 Conclusions

11.6 Sources of further information

Part III: Colour, design and coloration

Chapter 12: The history of colour theory in art, design and science


12.1 Introduction

12.2 The Reformation (c. 1520–c. 1550)

12.3 The Counter-Reformation (c. 1550-c. 1610)

12.4 Early Baroque (c. 1610–c. 1645)

12.5 Baroque Classicism (c. 1645–c. 1715)

12.6 High Baroque (c. 1715–c. 1770)

12.7 Neo-Classicism (c. 1770–c. 1815)

12.8 Romanticism (c. 1815–c. 1845)

12.9 Victorian Classicism (c. 1845–c. 1885)

12.10 Early Modernism (c. 1885–c. 1915)

12.11 Modern Classicism (c. 1915–c. 1955)

12.12 Late Modernism (c. 1955–c. 1985)

Chapter 13: Enhancing design using color


13.1 Introduction

13.2 Importance of context

13.3 Color influence

13.4 Color and depth perception

13.5 Applying color to a surface

13.6 Future trends

13.7 Sources of further information

Chapter 14: Understanding and forecasting colour trends in design


14.1 Introduction

14.2 Colour trends

14.3 Colour trend research

14.4 The colour research process

14.5 Colour forecasting

14.6 Conclusions

Chapter 15: Colour symmetry: the systematic coloration of patterns and tilings


15.1 Introduction

15.2 Patterns and tilings: a historical perspective

15.3 Principles of pattern geometry

15.4 Colour symmetry

15.5 Counterchange colouring

15.6 Colour symmetry of higher orders

15.7 Conclusions

Chapter 16: The history of dyes and pigments: from natural dyes to high performance pigments


16.1 Introduction

16.2 Cave paintings

16.3 Dyes from ancient Egypt

16.4 Pigments of ancient Egypt

16.5 Greco–Roman dyes and pigments

16.6 Medieval dyes and pigments

16.7 Pigments of the industrial revolution

16.8 Synthetic dyes

16.9 Organic pigments

16.10 Conclusions

Chapter 17: Dye types and application methods


17.1 Introduction

17.2 Dye selection

17.3 Preparation of materials for dyeing

17.4 Dyeing of cellulosic fibres

17.5 Dyeing of protein fibres

17.6 Dyeing of polyamide fibres

17.7 Dyeing of polyester fibres

17.8 Dyeing of acrylic fibres

17.9 Fluorescent brightening agents

17.10 Dyeing of fibre blends

17.11 Dyeing machinery

17.12 Conclusions

Chapter 18: Colour printing techniques


18.1 Hardcopy colour: analogue versus digital

18.2 Colour theory in relation to printing

18.3 An overview of halftoning and digital print technologies

18.4 An overview and development of inks

18.5 Inkjet papers and inks

18.6 Recent and future trends in colour, printing inks and hardware

18.9 Glossary

Part IV: Colour and design in particular applications

Chapter 19: Colour trends and selection in fashion design


19.1 Introduction

19.2 Colour associations

19.3 Key issues of colour in fashion design

19.4 Case studies

19.5 Conclusions

19.6 Sources of further information and advice

Chapter 20: Colour in interior design


20.1 Introduction

20.2 The role of an interior designer

20.3 Colour psychology

20.4 In the home: colour and its many moods

20.5 Colour toolkit

20.6 Factors that influence colour

20.7 Colour in the public and commercial space

20.8 Colour trends

20.9 How cultural influences affect colour

20.10 Conclusions

20.11 Sources of further information and advice

Chapter 21: Colour in food


21.1 Introduction

21.2 Colour, evolution and health

21.3 Appearance

21.4 Total appearance and expectations

21.5 Assessment and measurement

21.6 Halo effects, commercial exploitation and ethics

21.7 Conclusions

Chapter 22: Choosing effective colours for websites


22.1 Introduction

22.2 Choosing effective colours for websites

22.3 HTML colours

22.4 Colour harmony

22.5 Users with special needs (disabled and colour-deficient users)

22.6 Web content accessibility guidelines

22.7 Conclusions

22.8 Sources of further information

Chapter 23: Evolution and colour change in works of art


23.1 Introduction

23.2 Art and Collectables

23.3 Domestic display: commonsense preservation

23.4 Sources of further information and advice



Given its importance in analysing and influencing the world around us, an understanding of colour is a vital tool in any design process. Colour design provides a comprehensive review of the issues surrounding the use of colour, from the fundamental principles of what colour is to its important applications across a vast range of industries.

Part one covers the main principles and theories of colour, focusing on the human visual system and the psychology of colour perception. Part two goes on to review colour measurement and description, including consideration of international standards, approval methods for textiles and lithographic printing, and colour communication issues. Forecasting colour trends and methods for design enhancement are then discussed in part three along with the history of colour theory, dyes and pigments, and an overview of dye and print techniques. Finally, part four considers the use of colour across a range of specific applications, from fashion, art and interiors, to food and website design.

With its distinguished editor and international team of contributors, Colour design is an invaluable reference tool for all those researching or working with colour and design in any capacity.

Key Features

  • Provides a comprehensive review of the issues surrounding the use of colour in textiles
  • Discusses the application of colour across a vast range of industries
  • Chapters cover the theories, measurement and description of colour, forecasting colour trends and methods for design enhancement


Designers, color technologists, color quality inspectors, product developers and anyone who uses color in their work; academics and students studying color and design


No. of pages:
© Woodhead Publishing 2012
6th June 2012
Woodhead Publishing
Paperback ISBN:
Hardcover ISBN:
eBook ISBN:


"An articulate and monumental reference book... An invaluable resource for anyone serious about colour." --Selvedge Magazine

"This book should have pride of place in any personal or business library where potential readers work in the colour field with an emphasis on textiles, fashion and soft furnishings." --Colour Group Australia

"The chapters on colour standards and description provide an excellent introduction to the CIE colorimetry system. The book is a testament to the breadth of the field." --Coloration Technology

Ratings and Reviews

About the Editor

J Best

Janet Best is internationally recognised as an expert in global textile colour management. Her work with inspirational designers and leading edge colour technology providers in fashion retail has developed the foundation for a vast international network of colour specialists including artists, designers, architects, colour chemists, scientists, psychologists and educators. Janet’s knowledge and passion for colour allows her to work seamlessly with a wide range of industries and professionals creating many successful entrepreneurial collaborations. Janet’s work is a clear demonstration that ‘colour has no boundaries’ and ‘every business is in the colour business’.

Affiliations and Expertise

Colour Management Consultant, UK