First I want to thank my newsletter "mentors," Adrienne
Corti and her ever so talented son, Chris Sciurba, of Corti Design who
have held my hands through the process of creating my first letter as
well as a good part of this second letter. Hopefully, they will be able
to sever the umbilical cord sometime soon. But not too soon!
Also, I want to thank all of you for your lovely responses
on my first letter. Lots of good comments on the Universal Design segment
as well as lots of "likes" on the repurposed barn doors. In the
future I hope to do a number of sustainability articles to show how items
can be adapted for use in repurposed ways. I am now pleased to bring you
And please remember that if you have any particular
subject interests that you would like explored, please let me know.
Interesting Nuggets...Color is a perception,
not a property, and oh so subjective. In fact, our selection
of color can be as personal as a fingerprint conveying emotions
representing happiness or sadness, calmness or energy. Whether you prefer
the chic simplicity of a muted color palette or the pizzazz of high
voltage colors, there is a perfect color concept out there for you.
With that in mind
Architect Philip Koski, in a recent article in Sherwin
magazine, states that studies show that
we age from childhood to adulthood that there is a shift from a
preference for “warm, bright colors such as red, orange, yellow and pink
associated with positive feelings and high energy” to a “cool color bias”
with adults preferring blue, green and purple. Really? Are
the cooler ranges more comfortable for conservatives, introverts or those
within a different demographic cohort?
According to Koski, “Red, the hands-down favorite of
3-year olds quickly drops to the middle of the pack by early adulthood.”
Is this because we become less exhuberant as we age? Or just more
conscious of day to day realities? Surely, we all know extroverts who
have carried on fearlessly with color ! Decorators and designers have for
years used jazzy, punched up colors - contrary to what the studies say. I
once knew a decorator who claimed, "Darling, you can never have too
much red!" So will the current waves of intense pinks and corals
signal a tidal change - and that we are returning to our inner youth?
SW 6882 by Sherwin Williams
And, currently, unless you are absolutely blind to what is
happening in the world of color, you know that the new IT color is PINK!
It's everywhere. House
Beautiful magazine has promoted it in its March issue.
Another prime example is designer Alessandra Branca, whose coral-pink
sitting room in a recent Home Section of the Washington Post featured one
of her favorite hues, Benjamin Moore’s "Rhubarb."
With a bit of research I found Sherwin William’s “Enticing
Red” to be a close match to Ben’s “Rhubarb”. And not to be outdone in
aspects of boldness , Sherwin Williams recently promoted its Color of the
Month, “Daredevil” (SW6882), an even more intense orangey coral, as shown
in Interior Design magazine, as its January “pin-up!” Perhaps we have
grown tired of "drab" as associated with the economy, the wars
in the Middle East and the general trauma of the last decade and are
seeking ways to bring joy back into our lives with minimal financial
Photo by Dawn
O'Connor of her peonies, highly influential in color choices
By now, those of you who are color devotees may know that
has named “Honeysuckle” as the new hot color for 2011. Falling within a
range of deep corals which harks back through the ages it seems equally
at home in traditional and contemporary interiors.
Inspired by horticulture, this intense coral pink is
similar to that of a Gold Flame honeysuckle, which we have planted
outside our patio. (And, if you are into horticulture, Gold Flame, unlike
Japanese and Trumpet honeysuckle which grow with great abandon along our
country roadsides, is not an invasive species.) Since peonies are among my
favorites I had to add this photo which certainly conveys the range of
Getting back to the original thought of age influencing
color, holding true to form is House
Beautiful’s new editor in chief, Newell Turner, whose
favorite colors are, yes: blue and green! Maybe it’s a grown-up guy
And speaking of green, here's some fun... take a look at these interiors with their very saturated
greens and yellows.
Not your subdued, quiet, foresty green or mellow yellow,
the Kelly green and Lemon yellow in these photos helps to create energy
and pops of color by providing contrast with the black bedframe in the
left image and the woodsy wallpaper in the right image. I love the crisp,
clean lines - so “now” and balanced with a nod to tradition with painted
wall shelves and cream ware in the dining area (of which Martha S would
whole heartedly approve). Courtesy of Design
color": by Joslyn Taylor of Design Sponge
I hate to date myself but many, many, many years ago when
we lived in the Chicago area I used Kelly green, inspired by wild,
colorful Marimekko prints from Crate & Barrel for our kitchen and
daughter’s bedroom. And I did the Noguchi paper lantern thing, shown
slightly in the second image, when we owned a modern Bauhaus style house
in the Philadelphia area, so I have to say that for me this is a mix of
retro and deju vu!
Choosing colors for our homes is a deeply personal
experience and one that is influenced by many factors. Our environments
are manifestations of our consciousness. With the impact that color has
on our emotions, when considering color, ask yourself: What do you do in
this room? How would you like to feel when you walk into this room? What
inspires you? There are no bad colors. If you lack color commitment or
are color phobic, these images, drenched with color, reflect the value of
how a talented designer can create drama and energy in your environment.
So, if you still love neutrals you might want to take a
chance - become an unabashed color junkie! And remember, it’s only paint!
“Any color is always in style as long as it is used well.”
Atlanta decorator, Dan Carithers
“People who are afraid of color are afraid of life.” Home
furnishings and accessories designer, Jonathan Adler
Until next time...Nancy West, ASID