Selecting a Colour Palette for a Restaurant

Colors and patterns play an important part in creating the ambience of a place and have the potential to make or break it. Here are some tips and resources to help you choose the right colors for your client’s café, bar, restaurant or bakery. Images via Pinterest.
BY S.Ag on April 29, 2021

I was talking to a friend the other day who happens to be an interior designer and he confessed that selecting color palettes for residences and restaurants is an exhausting process. Colors and patterns play an important part in creating the ambience of a place and have the potential to make or break it. 

Have you ever wondered why we end up going to the same place every time we go out? What makes us feel comfortable there? The soft lights, wooden furniture that radiates warmth, lux upholstery and delicious coffee all come together to create your perfect coffee shop. Here are some tips and resources to help you choose the right colors for your client’s café, bar, restaurant or bakery. Read on, my friend.

  • Gather some descriptive words : First and foremost, ask your client to use words that would describe the place aptly. Some might want a fun, chill vibe while others would say that they want a classy, chic place. Pester them for some more keywords. Aim for at least 5-6. Let’s say he/she selected - friendly, classy, stylish, warm, regal.
  • Color Selection: Select a color for each word. For example I chose orange for friendly, burgundy for regal, pink for warm, teal for classy and sage green for stylish. Think about how the colours are going to feel. Don't focus on furniture or interiors at the moment. If you are not sure then you can do some research on what colours represent what emotions. This is what our color palette looks like right now.
Kernig Krafts 1 colors furniture custom bespoke
Colors for each keyword

Not quite there, are we? Now, we will tweak the shades a bit so that all the colors go with each other and also look good together. Orange could a little muted, pink could be more warm, maybe salmon and teal could be a little less intense so that there is variation in the saturation of teal and burgundy. Rearrange the colors according to their intensity. Looks better, right! We have more clarity now in terms of color range and saturation.

Kernig Krafts 2 colors furniture custom bespoke
After rearranging the colors
  • Add, tweak, delete: Keeping these keywords in mind, make a few color palettes that include at least one metal and one accent color. It’s not necessary that your client might want metal, but trust me and keep one in the palette, it can always be eliminated later or can be used as an accent color. I added gold because the client wants a warm vibe and it also has a regal feel. You can use various methods to make a suitable palette. Look at some reference images on Pinterest or try websites like : and I tried many color palette generators and liked these two the most. They are easy to use and quite helpful. Here is a sample color palette I made by adding a metal. We also need neutral colors, but I am going to add those later. 
Kernig Krafts 3 colors furniture custom bespoke
Always add a metal
  • Patterns and wood stains : Now we need to find the right wood stains and patterns. To add patterns, first think of places where you might want to use them for example upholstery, flooring, ceiling, walls, rugs etc. For patterns we can again refer to the keywords. Friendly, classy, stylish, warm and regal. I think it’s best to pick geometric or contemporary patterns for this palette as the client wants both friendly and regal, so overtly intricate or ornate patterns are a no no. You can also discuss this with your client and find out if they have a preference. Below you can see some reference pictures I collected that have interiors done in similar colors. I added a dark toned wood stain because I want the restaurant to look classy and royal. The upholstery pattern can be used on the cushions and ottomans. Gold can be used on metal fixtures and also as an accent. The floor pattern can be restricted to the bar area, or spread over the entire restaurant as per client's choice.
restaurant design kernig krafts teal burgundy furniture
Images for reference sourced from Pinterest

pattern design wood furniture kernig krafts colours bespoke gold
Our final color and material palette!

You now have something to start with. You can edit this palette according to the practicality of the material available locally, your client’s taste and your expertise. For more information on how to order furniture using these color and material palettes drop me an email at, I’d be happy to help! 

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