5. Find the right shade and material. A color with some brown in it, like the red of this chair, looks sophisticated and can work practically like a neutral. If it were a bright, clear red, it would stand out more. Be sure you test out a fabric at home, and in a variety of lights, to make sure it is the exact shade you want before committing. Likewise, material choice can make a big difference in the way a color comes across — imagine the differences among nubby red linen, red leather, red velvet and red microfiber. If you love a color but it just isn't working for you, try it in a different material.