Archive | Color

Theory, practice and inspirational ideas for using color in various ways on objects and surfaces throughout the house.

Color of the Year 2015: Marsala

color of the year 2015 Marsala - Pantone via Atticmag

When a fortified wine becomes color of the year 2015, both in name and hue, it shows how prestige gets packaged.

Of course, that’s the job of an outfit like Pantone, which just launched its color of the year 2015. It’s a forecast of a hue that will be appearing on clothes racks, furniture upholstery, paint palettes and all manner of consumer goods in the upcoming 12 months.

The color of the year 2015 — Marsala —  is a very familiar red-brown that we’ve been seeing on nail polish and lipstick for at least ten years and in industrial-style interiors for perhaps longer than that.… Continue Reading


Black and White Decor — Plus Color

black and white decor, plus a bright yellow sofa by Colin Radcliffe - Elle Decor via Atticmag

Black and white decor is so basic. But look what happens when one color is added to the mix.

Personalizing black and white decor can be challenging and some find it cold. That’s because, by definition, it’s neutral and color free. To my eye, that keeps things edgy and always somewhat modern even when iconic ebonized pieces date from the mid-20th century. Perhaps that’s also why I was struck by the way essentially black and white decor was handled in the London townhouse of top UK designer Colin Radcliffe, who is known for luxe furnishings and a detailed eye that appeals to a deep pocketed client base.… Continue Reading


Fresh Green Accents

green accents in the interior of a painted Swedish secretary - Tone on Tone via Atticmag

Green accents — the color of leaves, fresh herbs and new grass — keeps any room from ever looking gloomy.

We’re on the brink of Winter here in the Northern hemisphere, with our first snows due any day. Perhaps that’s why spring green accents used in these rooms feels so appealing. Swedish painted furniture often has a surprise color inside. This wonderful greig-y Neoclassical secretary with apple green on the interior drawers and desk top is so unexpected. It was pictured in the home of furniture dealer Loi Thai of Tone on Tone antiques in Washington, D.C. I’ve long been an admirer of his taste.… Continue Reading


Shocking Pink Rooms

shocking pink rooms - shocking pink antique Chinese handpainted wallpaper - via atticmag

Hot or shocking pink is one of those colors that’s been more associated with fashion than home decor.

A high voltage, sometimes neon hue in the blue-red family, hot pink became shocking after fashion designer Elsa Schiaparelli called her signature perfume “Shocking” in 1936 and marketed it as a signature color.

Of course, hot pink has been in the Indian palette for eons and it appears on building exteriors there, as well as other tropical countries. Shocking pink rooms are a different matter. Even for pink lovers it isn’t an especially easy wall color. Children love it so there’s an inclination to promote pink rooms for young girls or reserve it for a “mom cave.” Yet the stunning shocking pink walls in a New York bedroom [above] date back to the early 19th century when China’s Canton school produced hand painted wallpapers.… Continue Reading


Hydrangea Colors House

blue painted furniture in the dining room of a Massachusetts beach house - hutker architects via atticmag

In a Martha’s Vineyard beach house, the variegated hues of Nikko hydrangeas become a bold accent color.

The dining room of this spacious, open plan house shows how two approaches to home decor can be combined. First there is the type of all over wood-plank paneling often associated with the interiors of boats. Then there is the intense blue painted furniture with its cottage-on-steroids look. That same blue-violet palette was a favorite in the Hydrangea Colors Kitchen we featured here some time ago. Now, that kitchen serves as a prequel to the rest of the house.

This long view into the kitchen provides a general idea of the color scheme there.… Continue Reading


Mixed Color Decor

mixed color decor in the Fig House Lounge— stylebyemilyhenderson via atticmag

Vintage and historical color schemes are being remixed and sampled with fascinating results.

Some of this mixed color decor is intense and based on the saturated fuchsias, jades, saffrons and aquas found in Chinese Art Deco rugs made for export from the 1920s until the eve of World War II. Those are sorely out of fashion now though they can be considered bohemian. Some of it’s a hijack of the historical Rococo palette — sky blue, cotton-candy pink and celadon green — that turns it into a confetti riot. All of it’s interesting because we’re seeing staid color traditions from past centuries reinterpreted in unexpected ways.… Continue Reading