Dementia-friendly colour specification guide launched

Published: 24-May-2021

Dulux Trade launched Occupant Centred Colour and Design hub to showcase research on optimal environments for elderly care and dementia

The impact of colour on the creation of dementia-friendly spaces is being showcased through a new design tool.

Dulux Trade is furthering its commitment to providing colour and design support to enable the step change necessary in the provision of environments people living with dementia through the launch of its new Occupant Centred Colour and Design (OCCD) hub.

It was created to inform architects, designers, and specifiers how expert colour and design application, with the occupant at the heart of the brief, can have a positive impact on wellbeing across a range of sectors, including healthcare and education.

A new specialist section on the hub - Designing for Dementia and Aged-Care - brings together the ground-breaking work Dulux Trade has undertaken over the years to create optimal environments for dementia care in both health and residential settings.

To help design professionals improve living spaces for people living with dementia, the hub offers practical safeguarding measures, including colour and design advice geared to prevent trips and falls and help with wayfinding.

Promoting self identity

In addition, through use of a personalised colour scheme approach, the hub encourages exploration of ways to promote and preserve self identity and enhance wellbeing.

A key feature is the innovative and unique Dulux Trade Dementia-Friendly Colour Palette and Design Guide, which is based on a set of evidence-based design principles Dulux Trade has created by undertaking thorough research to explain how careful selection of certain colours, patterns, and materials can help those living with dementia.

Karen Wilkinson, marketing lead at Dulux Trade, said: “In the UK, someone is diagnosed with dementia every three minutes and this requires a radical change in thinking. To achieve this, we have been committed to supporting inclusive design to help improve the wellbeing of people living with dementia.

“Building our Occupant Centred Colour and Design Hub to further support design for dementia and aged care is one of the ways we are supporting the industry to think differently about how design can be harnessed to develop truly-inclusive care environments.

““We’re pleased to be able to provide professionals with a wealth of information to help them create more-supportive environments.
Careful selection of colours, patterns and materials can help reduce slips, trips and falls

Careful selection of colours, patterns and materials can help reduce slips, trips and falls

Combining resources

“Ultimately, by combining resources and expertise with other partners such as BRE, we can work towards a common goal to inspire more-inclusive built environments that embrace everyone in society.”

In partnership with BRE, BRE Trust, Loughborough University and Halsall Lloyds Partnerships, Dulux Trade also helped to build a dementia demonstration home - ‘Chris and Sally’s House’ - which has been adapted to cater for different types and stages of dementia.

James Gbadamosi of BRE said: “This research demonstrates just how powerful design is in the built environment and the impact that it can have on wellbeing.

“Together, we’ve been able to bring design innovation for dementia-friendly spaces to the fore and provoke real lasting change in the way our environments are designed across domestic, residential and healthcare building stock.”

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