Color Combination Tools

Color is difficult to get right. There’s a near infinite number of combinations out there, but only a few that will actually look right for your project. Because it’s so important to a design’s success, it’s worth taking a little time to work out your palette.

There are a lot of online tools to help out with this. They all vary slightly to suit designers with different preferences on how they work. We’ve collected together 25 of the best here, with a quick overview on each to help you decide which to try.

Website Color Match

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Color Match is a website tool that shows you how to do color matching and also giving guidance in choosing the best color. It also displays the HTML code for the color, which saves you time in your design work.

Toucan Color Palettes

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There are various tools available from Toucan Color Palettes, such as an image editor, color editor, audio editor, effect editor, vector editor and image markup. Toucan Color Palettes helps you to inject color into your design.

The Color Wizard

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Color Wizard is a very cool tool, you submit your own base color and it automatically returns matching colors for the one you selected.

The Color Tool

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Color Tool is dedicated to the display of color combinations, changing CSS styles, and displaying many powerful and unique color and font tools. It lets you view and experiment with thousands of color combinations.

Slayeroffice Color Palette Creator

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SlayerOffice Color Palette Creator shows 10 shades of the base color (located in the top-left), very useful for monotone designs.

Pro Color Palette Software from Colourlovers

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Pro Color Palette includes a photo tool to extract colors from an image, an advanced color picker and color theory wheel to give you your inspiration, and it lets you save the colors you’ve been working with.

Pictaculous

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Pictaculous is easy to use; just click a button and upload your image. It then automatically builds a palette for you based on that image.

Palette Man

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Palette Man’s uniqueness is in its limitations. It will only allow you to choose a color from the limited set of web-safe colors. It will then help you work out combinations using others from that palette.

Kuler

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Adobe Kuler is a free web app for themes that can inspire your design. No matter what you’re creating, with Kuler you can experiment quickly with color variations and browse thousands of them.

Kolur

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Kolur is a simple tool for you to browse color palettes. Designs displayed in the gallery go beyond the generic 3 colored dots, and attempt to portray the possibilities in palettes (As you can see from the image above!).

Instant Color Schemes

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Instant Color schemes uses an interesting method of generating the corresponding colors for you; no color theory at all. Instead, it grabs related images from the web and picks the color suggestions out of those.

Infobound Color Schemer

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Infobound Color Schemer is a simple tool to help you experiment with various color schemes for your next web or print project. Anyone who uses Photoshop often will know color picker this interface very well!

Hex Color Scheme Generator

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Let’s say you want to use red in your design but you don’t know what will work with it, just pick the red color and Hex Color Scheme Generator automatically comes out with 3 matching colors for you.

CSSDrive’s Image To Colors Palette Generator

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CSSDrive is another tool for grabbing colors from images. They also run one of the biggest CSS galleries around, and there’s no reason why you couldn’t upload an image from that gallery to see the original palette and how it was used.

Color Wheel from Colors On The Web

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The Color Wheel randomizes 6 million colors, simply spin it and it comes out with three matching color ideas for your design. This is for when you’re really stuck for ideas!

Color Wheel Color Calculator

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Color Wheel Color Calculator helps designers select HTML, RGB, or CMYK colors and identifies color harmonies and schemes.

ColorToy 2.0

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ColorToy 2.0 is a flash based color scheme generator and picker. It generates complementary color schemes based on your inputted color values, or randomly (which is much more fun!).

Color Schemer Online v2

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Color Schemer Online v2 has 16 boxes which contain matching color ideas, simply pick a color and it automatically generates matching colors for your art work.

Color Scheme Designer

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Color Scheme Designer provides color space conversions, better preview, enhanced scheme creation system, unique scheme IDs and permanent URL of the scheme. That’s a lot of great features, with one of the nicest interfaces on this list!

Color Palette Generator from DeGraeve

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This color Palette Generator generates a color palette based on an image; upload the image you want and it grabs the color scheme for your art work.

Color Hunter

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Color Hunter is a palette gallery where the palette is displayed next to the image it came from. It’s a great way to browse because you can see both the scheme, and a great example of what it can produce!

Color Explorer

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ColorExplorer is a free set of tools that include color matching and libraries of color. It’s well developed and has another fantastic interface.

Color Combos

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With Color Combos, you can find the perfect color combination for your design. It allows you to select and test the website color combination.

Color Combinations Tester

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What I like about Color Combinations Tester is that it fills the screen with your previews. Most of the others give colors in very small boxes.

Daily Color Scheme

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Daily Color Scheme is also known as the Every-Day Color Resource, because every day they bring you a fresh color scheme. It’s like daily inspiration from a design gallery, but purely for colors! (NB – This site hasn’t been updated in quite a while now, but we thought the idea and design were cool enough to be worth showcasing anyway!)

Conclusion

That’s our roundup of the top 25. Are there any we’ve missed out on though? What tool do you use to help with your color schemes, or do you just experiment with your design until you get it right?

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