This section is from the book "A Manual Of Home-Making", by Martha Van Rensselaer. Also available from Amazon: A Manual of Home-Making.
Colors in which there is a suggestion of yellow or orange or red, the warm colors, such as tones of tan or buff or old gold or brown or yellow-green, or the "warm grays," such as taupe or "sand" or "mode" colors, are likely to produce a warmth of atmosphere that makes them in general agreeable to live with. These colors are likely also to harmonize with the woodwork in the average house and to furnish a becoming background for the usual wood and willow furniture.
Red or reddish colors are too aggressive and insistent to be used in large quantities. Red also tends to diminish the apparent size of a room.
Yellow and yellowish colors are in general light, bright, and cheerful in effect.
Blue or bluish colors, while they tend to increase the apparent size of a room, are inclined to absorb the light and to be forbidding if used in large quantities.
Green, which is a mixture of yellow and blue, and greenish colors are in general quiet and restful in effect without being depressing.
Violet is the color characteristic of mystery and shadow and royalty, and should be avoided or used with great discrimination in a home.
In general, colors composed of two or more colors, whether of paint, of dye, or the interweaving of colored threads in a fabric, are more interesting, more refined, and more atmospheric in effect than the very evident reds and yellows and blues.