Tag Archive 'color'

Jun 13 2012

Are you Color-Phobic? How to Pick the Right Color without Anxiety

It can be a scary scene. You are standing in front of the paint swatches at your local home improvement store. Your eyes dart back and forth between the massive rainbow colored wall in front of you and the measly fabric swatch you brought in. As your eye drowns in a sea of possibility, your mind is aching from over stimulation.

The overwhelming anxiety that can come from choosing between “butter cream” and “butternut” can have even the most colorful of folks squinting to define a difference. However, even if your palms are damp with sweat from decision anxiety every time you almost commit to a paint color, here are a few ways to help you choose the perfect palette without the panic attack.

Be Narrow Minded

Choosing a color for your room is not a simple task. With endless color options, the varieties in hues, undertone, texture, and finish its no wonder that some of us declare, “color phobia” and leave our walls a flat white. However, if you are have decided that despite your previous failed attempts at choosing the perfect color that now is the time to add a much needed punch to your dull space, here are a few ways to help narrow down the options and save your sanity in the process.

Commit to a tone

If you have decided that you want green on your walls, you have to commit to what tone of green you want before you head to the paint store. Take items around your home to remind you: a pillow you love, that creamy silk pashmina from your closet, or even a favorite picture from a magazine. These are all clues as to what tone fits you best. Some greens have bluish undertones while others have yellow and even gray, so make sure the color that you choose is neutral enough to accommodate your furniture, but also make sure it isn’t too pale.

Bring these inspirational items with you to the paint store. Ask a professional at the paint counter to help you match those items with a paint color and be very narrow minded in your approach. Be firm and explain that you don’t want to entertain any other tones of green just the ones that match what you have brought. That way you can avoid being subjected to yet another bout of color confusion and walk away empty-handed.

-Paint one wall first

If you have had trouble committing to a color in the past, don’t be alarmed if and when you start painting that you begin to see spots or second-guess your choice. This is a very common response to painting new color. If you are beginning to wonder if “silent seaweed” really is the color for you, paint an entire wall or two and live with the color for a few days.

If you still feel like the color was improperly matched, then you should feel free to return to the drawing board. In most cases, it is simply the change that you haven’t’ gotten used to, not the color itself.

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Jun 04 2012

Color Code and Pattern Personality: How to Decipher Your’s for the Best Choices in Décor

In design, it is amazing how the little things can make all of the difference. From a simple throw pillow to a thoughtful art piece, it is the accents in a room that can really highlight your beautiful furniture or lofty ceilings. If you don’t understand how to use accessories to your advantage you will be missing out on an inexpensive way to take a room from plain to full of pizzazz. While color and pattern are the two main ingredients required to give any room personality, it takes a little know-how in order to really make a statement as well as blend everything effortlessly and purposefully.

Choosing Patterns 

This is a little bit trickier than choosing color. A pattern has the ability of telling the story of your room, where color has the ability of setting the scene. A fleur-delis pattern tells the viewer that you enjoy a classy and refined lifestyle, but if you bring it together with a pop of hot pink, it also takes your room to a fun and hip place, where your friends won’t be afraid to bring their kids or ask for hot cocoa instead of Chardonnay.

Most people have no idea how powerful patterns can be, nor that they have the ability to speak volumes about your personality. Do you love checkered patterns, country landscapes, shabby chic floral, or pinstripes? Perhaps you are drawn to the wacky and outlandish lines of a mid-century modern wingback chair, or you like the streamlined look of a simple linen drape. These little accents are the finishing touches on your room, as well as a declaration of your style.

Choosing Color 

After you have decided which patterns you are attracted to, then do a quick diagnostic of your color code. This may change depending on the room. In some rooms we like a moody, low-light color scheme for example in the bedroom, but a burst of bright orange in the living room can provide a lot of energy. These color codes can go together as long as you pay attention to hue. The color spectrum is an amazing thing. The right shade or the addition of yellow, green, white, or red to any color on the color wheel and you turn a pink into a purple or a green into a blue.

That is why it is very important to choose colors that blend together. Not all blues go well together. A bright blue that is like a robin’s egg will not blend well with a blue that has greenish undertones. The best way to decipher undertones is to ask your local paint store for a paint book. Choose colors that are close to each other. If you like a bright yellow in the front of the book and want to match it to the nearest taupe, don’t pull a color from the back and instead choose the brown paint swatch nearest to your original selection.

To-do: Flip Through Fabric Books

The next time that you are at a fabric store, flip through their fabric books. Every time your eye is drawn to a certain pattern (pay no attention to color) ask for a swatch of that pattern. Once you have collected 3 or 4 of your favorite patterns, then move on to color and do the same thing. This is a quick self-study in deciding what your pattern personality is.

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Mar 08 2012

Pattern, Color & Texture – Creating Amazing Rooms

Not all that long ago homeowners wouldn’t dare mix patterns and colors in any way that wasn’t traditional.  Neutral colors were, for the most part, bland and lacked personality.  Today, all of the rules are out the window when it comes to decorating your home!  Rich textures, contrasting patterns and lots of color create rooms that are filled with personality and dimension.

There are still a few rules, but not too many.  If you’re ready to turn your dull home into an extraordinary showplace, here are a few tips for decorating with these various elements.

Consider room size when choosing patterns

Take the size of the room in to account when deciding on the patterns you want to use.  Large patterns can look overwhelming in a small room; for example, a large floral print on furniture upholstery tends to look garish.  For smaller rooms stick to small and medium sized patterns.

In contrast, large rooms look better with patterns that are medium to large in size.  Small prints can get lost in a large room; a small print often looks like a solid color from across the room in an area that is open and spacious.

Colors liven things up

It’s fine to have neutral colored walls and even furnishings, but color is what brings a room to life.  Consider bold splashes of color in throw pillows, rugs, wall hangings, vases, curtains and other accents so as to add interest and appeal to the room.

When using color, use those you love most but stick to three basic shades so that the look is coordinated and not confusing.

How to mix patterns and textures

If you think back a few years, it’s very likely that you never saw plaid patterns, stripes and floral designs mixed in the same room at your mother’s or grandmother’s house – it just wasn’t done!

Today, designers know that mixing stripes and floral patterns or plaids and solids makes for a look that is bold, elegant or even country chic, depending on what you are striving for.

It is perfect acceptable – and even encouraged – that you use stripes and checks or stripes and floral patterns together, as long as all of the pieces contain some of the same color.  For example, if your color scheme includes burgundy, blue and cream shades you would want all patterned items to contain a single one of these colors such as burgundy.  A burgundy and blue striped throw pillow will look divine when paired with a floral pillow that contains the same shade of burgundy.

Use a varied array of texture in the room; nubby rugs or accent pillows stand out even more against smooth or satiny surfaces.

Don’t be afraid to mix it up a bit when it comes to patterns, color and texture.  By combining all of these elements, your rooms will make an impact that is not soon forgotten by all who enter your home.

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Oct 29 2010

Choosing Color a Scheme to Decorate Your Home in Style

Color plays a huge role in not only in the beauty of your home, but the atmosphere as well.  Many people don’t realize just how much color affects mood, relaxation and ambience.  In this article, you will find ideas and information that will help you create color schemes that make for an inviting, comfortable home that your family and friends will love.

Basic rules for creating an appealing color scheme


Keep in mind when choosing colors for a room to use only 2 or 3 total.  One color should dominate the room, while the other two will complement or contrast with the dominating color.  This makes for rooms that are beautiful, colorful, and anything but bland.

Many people use neutral colors, simply because they are so easy to accessorize.  Also, it’s easy to refresh the look without buying all new furnishings and accents.  If you prefer a bold, elegant look, consider using black and white with a few interesting splashes of red.

Neutral colors are chic and simple


When you think neutral, consider shades of black, white, gray and brown.  You can choose any variations of these colors, such as cream, beige and gold.  Incorporating these colors into your decorating is simple, as these shades blend easily with most furnishings, especially those that are made of wood or leather.  Always make sure that darker shades and lighter ones are well balanced, so that the room doesn’t appear too “heavy” or too “light.”

Also, make certain that you vary sleek, smooth textures with nubby or rough textures to add interest and depth to the room.


Warm colors invite relaxation and make a room look rich


If you love rooms that are rich and relaxing, warm colors are the perfect choice.  Take your cue from the colors seen in the fall, when leaves are golden, orange and russet; forest greens and brown tones add to the comfortable, inviting atmosphere.

Many people who decorate their homes in country or western style décor incorporate these colors into their rooms.  A wall may be painted cream and trimmed in russet, or vice versa depending on the size of the room.  Dark walls are fine for large rooms, but tend to make a small room appear even smaller.

Accents such as throw pillows and area rugs should be rich in color; plaids and stripes of forest green, russet and gold add bold splashes of texture and color.

Color is an integral aspect of interior decorating.  Colors affect mood, and create a certain type of atmosphere.  In a home office, you may want to use colors that make you feel more energetic; in a bedroom, relaxing colors such as soft lavender or pastel blue invite sleep.  Consider the room you are decorating, and the effect you want to create when choosing colors.

To help you choose the perfect colors for your home, pay particular attention to the colors of nature; the skies, forests, mountains and fields offer up plenty of ideas.  Put these tips to use in your home, and you will have rooms that are not only appealing to the eye, but appealing to the senses as well.

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Jul 15 2010

Adding Color to a Room with Fabric

Published by under Interior Design & Decorating

Could your rooms use a little extra spice and energy?  Dull, bland rooms offer little appeal to you or your visitors.  Fabric can be used in many ways to liven up a room and add depth!  Create a beautiful, welcoming home with color, fabric and texture.  It’s easy to do, and will transform your home from plain to exquisite.  This article offers tips and ideas for adding richness and exciting bursts of color to your home.

When it comes to fabrics and colors, there are a few rules you should follow to make your rooms their most beautiful and appealing.

Where to Add Fabrics & Color
Color can really ‘punch up’ a room!  The easiest way to add interest to your living room without spending too much money is with throw pillows, window treatments and tapestries.  Throw pillows should be combined in interesting patterns.  For example, a solid color throw pillow combined with a large print and small print pillow creates a pleasing look.  The sofa isn’t the only place for throw pillows!  Toss a few that are over-sized on the floor for extra seating.

Tapestries are rich looking and offer intricate patterns with pleasing texture.  Place a large tapestry that complements the other colors of your décor on one wall.  This can serve as the focal point of the room.

Rich, colorful fabrics hung around the windows add a burst of color as well.  A simple fabric panel or valance helps pull the room together.  Consider adding fabric to your lampshades and placing runners on your coffee or end tables that offer color and interesting patterns.

Creating the Right Mix of Pattern and Color
Generally, three colors should be used to decorate a room.  In most cases, 60% of the room should be decorated in a dominant color, while the other two make up the other 40%.  This creates the perfect balance of color, and allows one color to stand out as the base for adding more color and pattern.

To make things easier when you are selecting your patterns, start with the large scale pattern first.  This will help direct your search when you choose your solid and small scale pattern.  Years ago, homeowners wouldn’t dream of mixing floral, plaid and striped patterns.  Now, a combination of patterns is all the rage!  The interest and appeal cannot be matched.

If you choose a floral pattern as your large scale choice, your solid color should be selected from your floral pattern.  Your other small scale pattern should contain predominantly your three color choices for the room.  This small scale pattern can be plaid, geometric or striped, whichever suits your tastes.

Just remember, three colors create the most beautiful rooms, and keep them looking fresh and coordinated.  Choose fabrics with rich textures for windows, throw pillows and other accents.   Add solid colored ceramic pots filled with natural flowers, herbs or other greenery to finish balancing the room.  Stick to the solid/small print/large print rule, and you will have the most beautiful rooms ever – with very little effort.  When it comes to color and fabric, don’t be afraid to mix things up a bit!

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Jul 13 2010

Don’t Be Afraid to Add Color Your Home

Color has so many effects when used correctly in your home.  Whether you want to create a bright, cheerful atmosphere or one that is totally relaxing, paint can be magic!  Not only can you set the mood of a room, you can visually add more space or make a large, cold looking room appear smaller and more intimate.  The things you can do with a little color are absolutely amazing.

This article will give you ideas on how to create any look you desire using paint and color.  Have white walls and beige carpet?  It may be time to give your rooms a little personality.  Spice things up a little, or transform your bedroom in to a tranquil sanctuary.  Here are a few tips that will help you get started.

Choose Paint Colors According to the Mood You Want to Set
Would you love a living room that is cheerful and exudes energy?  Bright, bold colors lift your mood and make you feel more energetic.  Think about how color affects people.  Bright yellow, orange and lime green are vibrant and full of energy.  If you want a cheery, sunny living room, paint a wall or two bright orange and accent the walls with tropical prints that burst with color.

Want to create warmth and a cozy, intimate feel?  Warm colors are inviting and make people feel welcome.  Deep reds, browns, golds and rusts bring an intimate feel to the room.  Paint your walls a golden brown or terra cotta color.  Furnishings of wood and leather are perfect for this style of décor.  Rich tapestries add texture to the walls, and throw pillows decorated in rich colors add a burst of excitement to a solid colored sofa.  The Tuscan style of décor is a perfect example of warmth and intimacy.  The colors of autumn are brought indoors to create the warm atmosphere.

Cool colors offer relaxation for the bedroom and bath.  Think of soft blues and greens.  In the bedroom, keep colors soft and muted – no loud, bold hues!  The colors of your comforter, pillows and curtains should be kept calm and serene.  Sky blue and the pale, soft green are perfect colors to create a tranquil atmosphere conducive to a good night’s sleep.  In the bath, consider sponging light blue and white in cloud patterns on the ceiling – talk about relaxing the stress away!

Visually Change the Size of a Room
Have a living room that’s too big?  While this usually isn’t a problem, really large rooms can look a little cold and stark.  If your walls are all solid white or off-white, consider using a darker shade like golden brown or rust.  Darker colors draw the room in, and give it a more intimate appearance.

Most of us have rooms that are too small.  To make tiny spaces look more spacious, paint the walls and ceilings a light color.  White ceilings open up a room and make it the ceiling appear higher.  You can use color on the walls, just make sure the shades are light.  Cream, pastel peach or fresh yellow are good colors to brighten up the room and make it look larger.  Color can accomplish many things, from setting the mood of a room to visually changing its size!

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Apr 09 2010

Perk Up a Tired-Looking Room with Color

Have you lived in your home for years and feel that it’s time for an update? When you’ve had the same colors and accents for a long time, you may feel that you want a change. Perhaps you’re finding that your kitchen and living area have begun looking tired and drab. If you can’t afford a home makeover at the moment, then what are your options?

Spruce up your home using vibrant colors and add a few new accents. It’s amazing how different things will look when you’re through. The best part is, even though you’re not spending a bundle of money, your home will look as though you did.

In the Living Room
This is one area you really want to be appealing, especially since this is the room where family and friends congregate to visit and enjoy each other’s company. Have you been stuck on contemporary or modern décor for years, but now you’re ready to do something bold? Be daring, and move away from the black, beige, and tan that are the usual hallmarks of your design style.

If you want a look that’s fresh, energizing, and demands attention, work with vibrant blues, tropical greens, and peaches. Choose a light celery green for the walls, and then paint the baseboards and doors a dark forest green. Hang bright botanical prints on the walls and then add a few fruity- or tropical-scented candles. As a final touch, add a little silk greenery casually displayed in clear glass vases on a wooden coffee table, and you will have achieved a totally different look for your room.

If you have solid-colored furniture, don’t be afraid to add throw pillows in bold patterns and colors. By mixing floral designs, stripes, and plaids, you can add interest and originality. Just be sure all the colors are complementary, and you will have created an incredible look.

Add Pizzazz in the Kitchen & Dining Room
If your kitchen and dining room look a little worn out and drab, then add more color. Coordinate the color theme with what you’re doing in the living room. This is especially important if these areas run together. Citrus colors work great in the kitchen. Add some bright curtains to the windows. Sunflowers, strawberries, and other bright-hued prints can really infuse this room with energy.

For the dining room, consider laying a brightly colored runner along the center of your dining table. Then place a straw basket filled with fruit there. Choose a vibrant color for the dining room walls, and then add splashes of contrasting colors using a feather duster for an exciting look. Anything goes-just use your imagination! Any accent or idea will work, as long as it’s bright and cheery.

In end, the point of all this is to make your rooms in your home come alive. For years, you have been living with the same dull and boring colors day after day. It’s time to add some vibrancy and excitement to your home. When you combine many bright, bold colors, you add some depth to a décor that makes a room look much more interesting. You’ll find that accents and furniture stand out, instead of blending together and getting lost in a sea of white. You’ll find that every area of the room begins to take on a life of its own.

Go for the gusto! Don’t hold anything back! If you’re looking to give your home not only a brand-new look but an exciting feeling as well, bright, energetic colors may be just what you need. Go for drama and flair and forget those rooms with no personality. You will have a feeling of renewed energy and vitality each time you set foot in your home.

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Feb 15 2010

Tips for Adding Color to Your Kitchen

Most families seem to end up spending a great deal of their time in the kitchen, so you might want to make it more interesting and add some color. Even if you don’t want your kitchen to be drab and dreary, it’s not always easy to know quite how to add the right touch. Here are some easy ways to add color to your kitchen so you can change your décor from boring to fabulous.

Add Color by Dressing Up Your Table
Dress up your kitchen table as an easy way to add color to your kitchen. Some colorful dishware can really spruce things up, as well as a colorful tablecloth or placemat set. Another great way to dress up your table is to add a centerpiece such as flowers in a vase or basket, which will instantaneously add some color to the room. Try to find colors that will add some interest but also complement your kitchen’s décor.

Add Color with a Backsplash
You don’t have to have a boring kitchen backsplash. Some people keep it simple, using a neutral-colored tile or laminate, but you can always venture out a bit a choose a colorful look instead. Tiles and laminates come in all different colors. Another unique approach is to arrange broken-up colored glass in a random pattern on the wall. Not only will you create a personalized, one-of-a-kind backsplash, but you’ll be able to get a some different colors worked into the décor.

Paint an Accent Wall a Different Color
You can always add color by creating an accent wall in a kitchen that’s otherwise painted a neutral color. Choose the wall that’s the least covered with cabinets or appliances. Be sure to pick an accent color that will work well with the rest of your kitchen’s décor. For a more subtle look, go with a matching color. But if you want the wall to really stand out, pick a color that’s complementary.

Take the Doors Off the Cabinets
Showcase your colorful dishes and other tableware by taking the doors off your kitchen cabinets. If you have neutral dishes, add some pop by painting the insides of the cabinets a contrasting color. This doesn’t necessarily entail removing every cabinet door, but you can pick a few cabinets to be colorful, preferably those more prominent cabinets above the countertops.

Use Window Treatments to Add Interest
Another great option is to utilize the window area in your kitchen to add color. Whether you go with a valance or drapes, choose a window treatment in a color that will stand out. A black-and-white kitchen, for instance, would benefit greatly from some red or purple window treatments.

Adding color to your kitchen doesn’t mean you have to change the entire décor. Rather, build upon what you already have to add your own colorful touches here and there.

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Feb 12 2010

Different Color Combinations to Use When Decorating Your Home

A common problem faced by homeowners when decorating a room is figuring out what colors to use for the décor. Have you ever visited a paint store? If so, then you have probably seen the hundreds of different colors and shades you have to choose from when designing a color scheme. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by so many choices. Not everyone has an eye for color, and it can be quite difficult to pick out which colors will look good together in a room. If you’re unsure as to what color combinations to use in the décor of your home, then here are five to consider.

1. Brown, Blue, and Cream
This is a great color scheme for practically any room in your home. When using brown, blue, and cream for your décor, you just need to be sure to keep a balance of colors, particularly when applying the dark brown. For instance, you might want to use cream or light blue pillows to lighten up a dark brown couch. Or if your couch is cream colored, you can add some interest with brown and blue pillows. If you can find patterns that include all three colors, you can add even more visual interest to the décor.

2. Shades of Brown and Cream
Whether you’re looking to create a peaceful retreat in your bedroom or bathroom, try using shades of brown and cream. You can choose from anything from dark chocolate brown to an off white or light cream color, as there are a wide variety of shades across this spectrum. Although this color combination closely resembles a monochromatic theme, you can easily add more interest. Simply pair a lighter shade with a darker shade, and that will make the room appear much more lively.

3. Blue and Orange
Colors like blue and orange that lie across from each other on the color wheel are considered to be complementary. When using this color combination, you don’t want to use bright oranges and blues but rather keep the colors muted. You can easily work these colors into a contemporary-styled room by including white or even brown in the mix.

4. Black and White
You can use this classic color combination for practically any room you like. What’s great about black and white is its versatility, meaning it can be modern as well as traditional depending on the pieces you choose to use. Add an accent color into the scheme, such as green or red, to create even more style in a black and white room. There’s no shortage of black-and-white décor items available these days, making this one of the easiest color schemes to work with.

5. Pink and Green
Another complementary color scheme you might try is pink and green, which tends to go well in bedrooms, living rooms, and sun rooms. You want to be sure to add a neutral color like white or cream into the mix. Otherwise, you might end up with too much color in the room. Also be sure to choose colors that are the same shades. Mint green and neon pink, for instance, aren’t going to work well together.

These five color combinations are a great place to start if you’re having trouble coming up with color ideas for your home. When decorating your home, any of these combinations should give you some inspiration. When you use any of these suggestions as a base and then add your own style to them, you can create a unique look for your home.

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Jan 28 2010

Different Color Schemes for Decorating Your Home

Homeowners often become overwhelmed when it comes time to choose a color scheme for a room. The tricky part about choosing a color scheme is that once you choose one color, you then have to decide what other potential colors to put in the room as well. So what’s the best way to choose a color scheme? One of the best tools to have at your fingertips is a color wheel.

What Is the Color Wheel?
Sir Isaac Newton was the first to use the color wheel. He performed an experiment with a prism. What he discovered was that pure white light had a wide spectrum of reflective colors. People have been using this spectrum of colors ever since. Known as the color wheel, it’s helpful for decorating and classifying colors.

The Classification of Colors Using the Color Wheel
The colors on the color while are basically classified into three different categories. 1. The primary colors consist of red, yellow, and blue. 2. Next are the secondary colors, or orange, green, and violet. These colors are created by mixing the primary colors. 3. Then you have the tertiary colors, including red-orange, yellow-orange, blue-green, and yellow-green. You combine the primary colors with the secondary colors next to them to create these colors.

Monochromatic Color Scheme Explained
A monochromatic color scheme is just like it sounds. This approach to color involves picking one color and then using only that color for the entire room. The key to this color scheme is to use varying shades, from light to dark, of that color. You can also use white in the color scheme, which will help break up the color.

Analogous Color Scheme Explained
A analogous color scheme will include anywhere from two to six different colors in the décor of a room. Here, you use colors that are adjacent to one another on the color wheel. For instance, the color red would use orange or purple as accent colors, since they are the colors next to red on the wheel. Start with your main color first, and then you can choose between you accent colors.

Complementary Color Scheme Explained
The complementary color scheme is one of the more popular approaches to color design. Essentially, you begin with a main color (such as yellow or red) and then go directly across to color wheel to find its complementary color. For yellow, for instance, the complementary color would be in the purple family. For the color green, you would look in the pinks. This can always be played with a little bit. Try mixing the family of colors: it could be green and pink, or it could be green and red.

Triad Color Scheme Explained
Another very popular design for homeowners is the triad color scheme. Here you use three colors that on the color wheel form a triangle together. One triad combination would be orange, green, and purple. Make one of these colors your main color and use the others for accent colors, or choose two colors and then accent with the third.

Remember also that both black and white are neutrals. So you can add them to any color scheme without changing that scheme too much. By playing around with the color wheel and some of these color scheme suggestions, you will be able to come up with some great options for the rooms in your home.

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