Color. I live for it. It soothes me, energizes me, and helps me concentrate. In fact, I can't relax at home until the colors are just right. Similarly, the lack of color demoralizes me, robbing my soul of poetry and music. Color adds depth, dimension, texture and a sense of sweet comfort to my home decor. Home wouldn't be home without color. Is it the same for you?
As a young teenager, I remember helping my French cousin Dominique paint her tiny Parisian apartment: a rich, Colombian coffee bean brown for the WC; a fiery red for the common area... The preposterousness of her colors floored my American sensibilities, and opened a window onto the potential of Color for the Home. Similarly, my French aunt covered her kitchen in a warm orange, making the space glow with hospitable possibilities, as did my grandmother's buttery yellow kitchen. I wish I had asked them what inspired their color selections.
My current office combines spring green and light purple. My previous office paired duckling yellow with periwinkle blue. Although related, the current evolution definitely works better for me and the space as well. My inspiration? Magazines, several favorite fabric swatches, a reupholstered sofa, something within me and a piece of artwork.
Artwork can be a terrific place to start. In fact, in Create a Color Palette To Coordinate Walls, Carpet, Furniture & More, I describe how to create a color palette with the help of Fabulous Floors Magazine's "Designer's Walk." If you haven't read it, consider downloading a copy of the article by clicking this link.
[By the way, a video clip of our Audubon color forecast is available on the Wear-Dated website, in Color and Carpet.]
Once I have color families in mind, I like to test my concepts. Traditionally, I get paint swatches and pair them against my fabrics and artwork. I definitely look at them in different light conditions.
Some of the online design sites are terrific for exploring and experimenting with color concepts. For example, the Wear-Dated website Design A Room function allows you to view carpet colors in a specific room setting and modify the wall colors, too. There are others [although they may not focus as much on the floor and carpet] -- like DesignMyRoom, or Better Homes and Gardens' Arrange-a-Room or even iVillage's Virtual Room Decorating...
Before finalizing my color decisions, I like to remind myself of color principles and tips. We offer a few in Color Your Home with Wear-Dated. Sensational Color, though, will truly give you something to think about.
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