HAVE YOURSELF A COLOR PARTY

Early in my design career, a client presented me with a challenge for re-designing her living room.

She wanted a new look, with lots of COLOR!

Per her instructions, she wanted to keep two existing chairs , one red and one blue, and replace most of the remaining furnishings, including the sofa.

(In design parlance, that’s what we refer to as the scope of the Project).

Did you catch the part about the chairs – one red, the other blue?

The real challenge here, was to connect these seemingly disparate pieces into a harmonious color scheme.

Well, I love a challenge, and every project has one.

It’s what usually gets the creative juices flowing.

It is also where the ‘Color Party’ comes in.

Let me explain.

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HAVE YOURSELF A COLOR PARTY

Early in my design career, a client presented me with a challenge for re-designing her living room.

She wanted a new look, with lots of color. Per her instructions, she wanted to keep two existing chairs , one red and one blue, but replace most of the remaining furnishings, including the sofa.

Did you catch the part about the chairs – one red, the other blue? The real challenge here, was to connect these seemingly disparate pieces into a harmonious color scheme.

Well, I love a challenge, and every project has one. It’s what usually get the creative juices flowing.

It is also where the ‘Color Party’ comes in.

Let me explain.

Every design project needs a color scheme, and in order to achieve this, one needs to consider which colors to ‘invite’ to the party. It’s the same idea as coming up with a guest list, and subsequently weeding out the ‘guests’ that don’t quite fit in.

If you think of any party you’ve ever given, wasn’t this the typical starting point? After all, you don’t want to invite guests who don’t get along, do you?

A color party is no different. The best part, however, is that you can dispense with food and entertainment. A theme can be a good idea, if you’ve narrowed down your choices to warm, or cool colors, or a certain mood that you’re trying to achieve.

For example, if your goal is to create a tranquil, calm retreat, red might not be a welcome guest.

You get the idea.

Be forewarned that certain guests might arrive with an attitude, and may not get along with others no matter how clear your intention. Should you seat Peacock Blue next to Orange? What about Grey? The former might be a bit jarring, the latter may not be exciting enough.

Rules for a Color Party (Yes, there are Rules)


Purchase a Color Wheel

A color wheel is a handy tool that can be purchased at any art supply store.

This is a great resource for educating yourself on color, especially if you are unfamiliar with terms like ‘complementary’, or analogous’, or the meaning of hues, tints and tones.

Brushing up before hand, so you can address your guests accordingly, is always a good idea.

 

Consider a Theme

What mood are you striving for?

A few words come to mind: 

Sensuous (as in slightly exotic, with  rich reds, browns, and gold);

Nurturing (earth tones, in varying shades of green or brown);

Contemplative or Serene (a watery theme of cool blues and greens, mixed with neutrals such as taupe, beige, or off-white);

Dramatic (strong, jewel-toned colors, such as a sunny yellow, that can lend excitement to your space); or perhaps

Elegant (black and white, chocolate brown, and other neutrals come to mind).

 

Refine Your Guest List

The guests here, being the colors, of course.

Based on the theme you’ve selected, invite groupings of the most appealing colors to your party. Keep in mind existing surfaces that you don’t plan to change, such as floors and carpeting.

Remember – you want everyone to get along!

Steer clear of colors that tend to show up with an Attitude – they should not be invited.

 

Have Fun with Paint Samples

You can always rely on traditional paint chips, available at most paint supply stores, but I like some of the more innovative sample pots of actual paint, that are also readily available.

YOLO Colorhouse offers poster-size sheets painted with the actual paint color, so there’s no guessing if the color you’re seeing is the ‘true’ color , or not.

The coolest part is the sticky tape on the back, that allows you to temporarily attach the painted sheets to your walls, to see firsthand if the color scheme is to your liking.

A quick word about eco-friendly paint options – do yourself, and your guests, a favor by choosing sustainable paints that will be kind to your health and the environment.

 

Don’t Give Up

Despite your best efforts, your guests may still misbehave.

They may try to steal the spotlight, and not let others have their moment to shine. Give yourself time to re-coup, then invite a different group of guests and try again. Ask them to leave their egos at the door.

So there you have it!

Choose your project, review the Rules above, and throw yourself a Color Party.

Let me know how it goes.

THE ‘AMUSE-BOUCHE’ OF YOUR HOME

Are you familiar with the term ‘amuse-bouche’?

Normally experienced in a restaurant setting, an amuse-bouche is a single, bite-sized hors d’oeuvre – complements of the chef .

Its purpose is to tickle your taste buds and whet your appetite for what’s to come.

If you think about it, the entryway to your home is a kind of amuse-bouche, although you aren’t likely to see it described in that manner in any publications on interior design.

Why do I say this?

Let’s explore the purpose of the Entry, and you will see what I mean. The Entryway is:

  • A place to enter the home
  • A place to receive visitors

Here’s what else the Entry is meant to do:

  • Say something about the people who live there, by suggesting their interests and personalities
  • Be warm and inviting, so visitors feel welcomed.
  • Offer a hint of ‘what’s to come’

Do you see the connection?

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