With the return of sunny longer days and color to our very brown and gray New England landscape, I’m ready for the refreshing feeling of Spring! Many of my clients are too since they are following suit in their interiors this Spring with plans for major remodels and redecorating refresh.
So what am I recommending when a client asks for a palette that is on-trend but will stand the test of time? Navy and other blue hues. First, you must know I am a fan of blue, and I still adore the color that we painted our master bedroom 17 years ago (Benjamin Moore 2128-60 Beacon Gray). Crisp blue and white linens and darker blue draperies and upholstered chairs, can’t beat that. I am both soothed and energized by the color every day.
Like in this photo from Cindy Rinfret, you can really see how Navy Blue brings interest to the room.
As a designer, it’s my job to tell you the “why” something works in your décor, not just the “what.” So here are 5 reasons why the color Navy might be the perfect color in your family room, bedroom, mudroom, bathroom, or kids’ rooms.
But Navy is also a major color in Asian-inspired decor, with beautiful blue and white porcelains (so popular now) and Japanese prints like the ones below from Georgica Pond Interiors and featured this Spring at Williams Sonoma Home.
To give you a feel for the span of blues out there here are a few of my favorite Benjamin Moore Navy paint colors:
I know lots of designers like HC-154 Hale Navy, but I rarely select it for my clients because it is so very dark. But if you have a really sunny space, it might work for you. If you want to see all 371 of the blue paints that Benjamin Moore has go here: https://www.benjaminmoore.com/en-us/search?q=blue&category=color
That’s all for our review today of Navy and ode to blue! When you’re out shopping in coming weeks, pick up some things you love in blue and white. And call me if you want to refresh a room with blue and need a paint consultation…we’ll choose just the right blue for you!
2018!! My goodness, can we possibly be ready to flip the calendar again? Let’s just say the color trend folks are always timely, so the announcement by Benjamin Moore of AF 290 "Caliente" as their 2018 Color of the Year comes right on-time. Well, at least right on time for High Point Market which started on 11 October, as discussed in last week’s blog post.
Caliente!! What a beautiful red it is. Here’s Benjamin Moore’s announcement:
"Caliente is the signature color of a modern architectural masterpiece; a lush carpet rolled out for a grand arrival; the assured backdrop for a book-lined library; a powerful first impression on a glossy front door. The eye can’t help but follow its bold strokes. Harness the vitality.”
—Ellen O'Neill, Benjamin Moore & Co.
You just have to watch Benjamin Moore’s video, it will get your whole body and soul in tune with RED:
“Color of the Year 2018 | Benjamin Moore”
If you want to see how it all fits together, here is Benjamin Moore’s entire Color Palette for 2018:
For those of you that follow the color trends, you will note that Caliente is very different than previous years, where soft and muted colors were all the rage. For comparison, here are the “Color of the Year” selections by Benjamin Moore and Pantone from the past 5 years.
So, how should you use "Caliente" and other vibrant reds in today’s interiors? Well, this is probably a good place to cover a topic that I’ve been meaning to discuss for a while. Since many of my clients have gorgeous red and blue Persian and Oriental carpets in their houses - 2018 could be the year to show off, celebrate and embrace the vibrant hues in these woven treasures.
For example, here is a photo from a home office project I recently completed with a client where the carpet was the main inspiration for the colors in the room:
If you are a lover of Persian/Oriental rugs, you are undoubtedly familiar with the variety of motifs, scale, and colors used in these rugs. Blues and reds are commonly seen together, and decorating rooms with these hued rugs demands careful and deliberate attention.
To help get it right I love to refer to a wonderful book by Arthur T. Gregorian entitled “Oriental Rugs and the Stories They Tell,” first published in 1967, and updated in 1978. If you recognize the name Gregorian from the Gregorian Oriental Rug Company in Lower Newton Falls, MA, it’s the same family. This book is a treasure, and excellent reference guide to explain the designs, weaving practices, and tell-tale motifs to discern between a Sarouk, Kazak, Herati, Heriz, Kerman, Keshan, Turkoman, and other types of rugs. According to the author, to really understand the styles and weaves, one has to have an accurate knowledge of the geography of the countries involved (Iran [formerly called Persia], Afghanistan, Turkey, Caucasus, Turmekistan, Armenia, and a handful of other locations whose names have shifted with the political winds in the past 50 years). Arthur Gregorian is right-on with his statement: “You who live with Oriental rugs never think of them as something foreign to you, for they are native to your Western culture, and make a strong, rich, colorful contribution to your home, your everyday living, and your happiness in life.” My clients with Oriental rugs really do consider them treasures, and often, they form our starting point on color schemes and room arrangement.
For more information on designing with Oriental Rugs, you should check out a recent article from the Boston Design Guide, Jan 27, 2017 by Carly Stewart, who also references the expertise and beautiful rugs from Gregorian Rug. In her article Carly cites the following six main reasons for owning Oriental Rugs:
1. Lasting Appeal
So, bravo to Benjamin Moore for going BOLD this year with Caliente, AF 290.
I always enjoy designing with red, and hope the selection of Caliente will entice the world’s fabric houses to design more fabrics with red this year.
With fall on our doorstep, and the kids already back-to-school here in Sudbury, our thoughts are shifting to preparing for the colder days ahead, and to getting our kids in a good frame of mind for some serious learning at school. And what’s essential to a good learning environment and happy days for everyone - a good night’s sleep!
For good sleep, many people want their bedroom as close to blackout as they can get it, and room-darkening cellular shade with cordless control are one of my favorite solutions for the privacy layer in these bedrooms. Especially for kids! Comfortex Window Fashions makes one of my favorite cellular shade offerings in their NY plant - the Linen Weave cordless shade with ColorLux custom color, in both room-darkening and light-filtering fabrics.
Two weeks ago I wrote a blog about my tour of the Comfortex Window Fashions plant (“Comfortex Shade Production Facility Tour” - 8/23/2017) in Watervliet, NY. In an odd twist of fate, while I was at their plant discussing their products Comfortex interviewed me (and some of the other designers) about their ColorLux program. Here’s their short video: “Color Lux: ThinkColor. ThinkGreen”.
Since I find their product so good at controlling light I recently suggested a Comfortex Linen Weave shade in a room-darkening configuration for a client’s son’s room. As you can see in the picture, the shade fits nicely inside the window frame, and we put a crisp striped faux roman cornice on top for impact. The shade is perfect for a good nap or night’s rest for this most adorable and fun toddler, and the parents can rest comfortably knowing the cordless control is child-safe.
If you want to learn more about the shades and the colors it comes in, here’s a link to the ColorLux program which offers cellular and roller shades in over 800 colors. Wow, talk about custom!
ColorLux Designer Cellular & Roller Shades
I hope you’re ready for a wonderful crisp Fall, my favorite time of year!
As I detailed in my last blog post on the “Top Ten Color Mistakes”, since colors are so vital to decorating I want to share my latest find—a digital tool for accurately “reading” colors: the Color Muse.
Basically, the small Color Muse device has its own light source (charged by an internal battery that can be recharged with the included micro USB power cord), and you operate it through an app on your phone. The Color Muse works with an iPhone, iPad or Android phone.
To demonstrate the Color Muse, in the photos below I have used the app to tell me the corresponding Benjamin Moore paint color for the teal canister in a kitchen. After a couple of seconds the Color Muse app chooses “Rendezvous Bay 726” as the closest paint color match. I concur!
If you are interested in finding out more about the Color Muse, here is a link to more information on this fantastic product:
Color Muse Website
If you need help matching colors in your home, I would love to demonstrate the Color Muse tool for you in your next interior home project! I just used it yesterday with a client who purchased a lakefront home in New Hampshire, and she is in search of the existing wall paint color to do some small touch-ups. In two minutes we identified the color…how cool is this techie product???
Today I’ll relate the top ten mistakes I see clients make when choosing paint and color schemes for their homes, either when they don’t have a practiced interior color sense, or a designer who can help them with this critical area.
Don’t make these same mistakes, as repainting can be extremely frustrating, time-consuming, and expensive!
TOP TEN COLOR MISTAKES YOU WILL NOT MAKE:
1. When choosing a wall color, using the exact color taken from a rug, art piece, or fabric without regard to intensity of that color.
Barbara Phillips, interior designer and owner of Center Stage Interior Designs, has delivered impeccable window treatments and design services to both residential and commercial clients in Massachusetts since 2001.