- Our experiences with objects determine how we feel about the colors of those objects.
- There are general trends in color preferences across cultures, but wide differences among individuals.
- Understanding why we like the colors we do could help artists, designers and marketing companies.
Yellow or pink flowers? The green or blue sweater? From cars to furniture to iPods, we make decisions about color all the time. Now, scientists are starting to figure out why we like the hues we do.
It is our experiences that determine which colors we prefer, suggests a new study, which was the first to experimentally test the long-suspected idea that people like the colors of the things they like.
The findings may help explain why blue is pleasing to people everywhere, why Japanese women tend to like light colors, and why dark yellow is generally unappealing, among other trends.
On the flip side, the study also hints at why one woman might buy orange socks, while the next shopper picks brown -- in turn, offering tantalizing fodder for designers, artists and marketing experts.