There are plenty of reasons people shy away from using color in their home decor and clothing choices. Personal preferences are often the reason cited by myself and others when explaining my black, white, and gray wardrobe, or our previous home’s generally neutral palette.
When we purchased our new home, it was initially a given that I would paint it all white, or some neutral shade. After reading, I’m hoping you’ll either feel more emboldened to paint an accent wall, OR save your extra hours this summer enjoying the weather instead of sweating over a bucket of paint to hide already bold walls.
The best way to think of it is as a baseline for understanding general interpretations of color, because each of us is going to see color differently and assign it different meanings based on our experiences in and sensitivity to interior environments. A little fun history fact—Sir Isaac Newton created the first color wheel and since then, artists, scientists, and other creatives have used it as a baseline, foundation, and framework for using color in a variety of mediums.
When primary colors are mixed, they create green, orange, and purple. Adding black and white changes the shade and tint to these twelve baseline hues, creating a whole world of complex design decisions to make. This will result in a vivid, bold palette with contrasting hues that still complement each other well.
You might have negative memories or experiences from a space when you were a kid that impacted how you feel about certain colors today.
The original owners of the home selected such bold paint colors and used them so broadly, it almost becomes less of a focal point and more of an overall mood for the room. So we decided to bring in furniture choices that could stand up against such a heavy-handed use of bold hues.
In our peach room, we selected a pattern with pinks, blues, and greens to provide visual interest, then added neutral pieces of furniture in different textures (woven cotton and velvet) to ground the palette and provide areas of rest. In the yellow room, we brought in navy blue velvet chairs and bright magenta florals to help ground the incredibly vibrant shade of yellow.
A green with just enough gray to it brings the vibrancy you crave; it also allows enough flexibility for the self-taught interior designer to make some fool-proof decor choices that are bold but less permanent than selecting a bright and saturated paint color or wallpaper. Can we learn to think of color as a necessary part of the design equation that negates trend and instead enhances the experience we have within a space?
Can we learn to think of color as a necessary part of the design equation that negates trend and instead enhances the experience we have within a space?