Color affects us in many ways. Our responses to color range from subliminal, physiological to emotional. It impacts how we feel when we enter a room, what products we purchase, and even what foods we choose to eat.
Have you ever been shopping and suddenly noticed that every store seems to be carrying the same color options? All of a sudden everything from salad tongs to skirts is that “new trendy color”? If you ever wondered how a color trend began, then read on.
Every year, a company called Pantone selects what they consider to be the “Color of the Year”. While the name may be unfamiliar to you, Pantone is the global authority on color and provider of professional color standards for the design industries. Their choice of colors influences everything from graphics to fashion, to home décor. They set the stage, and the rest of the world follows, right? Well, sort of. We all don’t necessarily need to run out and re-paint our walls and update our wardrobe just because a world authority on color predicts a trend, gives it a name, and proclaims it to the world.
First of all, not every color of the year translates to everyone’s taste. Take this year’s choice, Mimosa. This is a strong, vibrant, yellow with orange undertones. I’m not sure I could pull it off either in my house, or in my wardrobe. Michelle Obama certainly did, though. The dress she wore to the Inauguration Ceremony was a retro take on the upbeat yellow tone. By the way, it’s no surprise that Mimosa is a vibrant, optimistic color, which is what we all need right now, given the current state of the economy.
As for Home Staging or Interior Design, you may see this color as an accent; a pop here and there, such as in pillows or artwork. Should you decide, however, that the bold optimism of Mimosa is perfect for your home, Benjamin Moore translates its interior color trend as St. Elmo’s Fire 362, from its newest Aura paint line. In addition, Benjamin Moore publishes a yearly color report title “Color Pulse” that offers several neutral hues appropriate for Home Staging from their “Urban Silence” category: Rattan AF-375 and Wasabi AF-430, both from the Affinity collection. Try them out if you’re feeling trendy. If not, rely on a tried and true standby such as Lenox Tan, HC-44, or Toasted Pine Nut, from Sherwin Williams.
And lastly, if you are ever attempting to find out what color goes with what and happen find yourself without your handy-dandy color wheel, try this little parlor trick: Take a sheet of black paper or cardboard, and cut out a two to four inch square. Look at the color of your outfit, or item in question through this “window” for about 30 seconds and then look at a blank sheet of white paper. The color that appears on the paper will be the after-image; a complement of the original color. It really works!
Leigh Newport is Owner and Principal Designer for Staged by Design, a Home Staging and Interior Redesign company serving all of Northern Virginia. Visit us online at www.staged-by-design.com