For a recent bedroom makeover, we were inspired by purple and yellow. These "It" colors for spring came straight from the runway to home design. Why purple and yellow? Trend setters such as Pantone and The Color Marketing Group devote their energies to studying the effects of color on mood and the economy. Yellow is here to cheer us up in these uncertain times, and purple to calm us down -- a visual therapist of sorts. Not that those are the only choices out there to guarantee style, but they certainly hit the spot in this bedroom.
Color trends permeate graphic design, jewelry design, even packaging for perfume and makeup. This Spring 2009 catalog from Neiman Marcus is filled with variations of deep purples that fade to lavender and gray, pinks that range from blush to fushia, and dare say, hints of mauve. Yellows -- from sunshine to pure gold -- serve as accents. This bracelet from J.Crew uses the trendy combination. It might be just the thing to wear when you visit your neighborhood paint store.
Although you may be shopping for your home and not your wardrobe, don’t throw clothing catalogues in the recycling bin just yet. Clip and save the pages that inspire you. We found this tunic and handbag in the Boden catalog, and the necklace is J.Crew. They look so good hanging in our bedroom that they might never make it off the hanger.
Money may be tight, but window shopping is free. Check out store displays for the colorful hues of the season. And while magenta may not suit your hair or eye color, the jewel tone may be the perfect accent in your next design project, especially when tempered with gray.
Paint companies do the work for you with racks of paint swatches and, better yet, brochures with perfect color combinations. Samples from Benjamin Moore show you what they look like in a room and explain the color theory behind the choices. Benjamin Moore teamed up with Pottery Barn and now showcases the catalog’s colors in leaflets with the company’s furniture. Now how easy is that?
Here are a few tips for working with color.
• Start with one color. We chose a mostly monochromatic color scheme of purple. This design principle focuses on a single color with variations in lightness and saturation.
• Find an accent. For interest, we tapped into a complementary accent color (colors opposite on the color wheel). A pale, buttery yellow on the ottomans and shams provides a soothing spot to rest the eyes and break up the monochromatic scheme.
• Vary shades. To keep things united, look to a paint swatch for guidance. The wall color and mirror color are only two steps away from each other on a paint strip. Similarly, to stay on target with fabrics, use paint strips as guideposts.
-- By Cathy Still Johnson