I may have just found my new inspirational color palette for the office.
I borrowed this beautiful boutonniere from Pomp & Plumage and inspired by a color palette from Pinterest, created my own with the office/guestroom in mind. When I first came across the image I adored the color combination and decided that perhaps this is the direction I should work towards (you can see in the bottom final color line up that I’m leaning towards the softer pinks and beiges over the burgundy reds though).
Here she is now, clearly in need of some of those alternative colors since the room is full of teal, tan and brown (the teal is hiding in the window curtains, on the bulletin boards, in the artwork and in the fabric leading back to the kitchen):
Color is not really my thing. I think that in general I have a pretty good eye when it comes to mixing color schemes but sometimes I get stuck (and that leads to a crazy amount of frustration because I can’t pinpoint the problem and then am nowhere near a solution).
But over time I’ve pulled together a resource list from those great design experts (you know, the ones with the degrees in color theory and not business – I am the latter) and I have come to embrace these color strategies:
Color Palette Inspiration
- Nature: color schemes in nature are perfection. They can provide inspiration and always always look beautiful. Nature does not screw this up.
- Room temperature: warm and cool should exist in every room. It’s not a hard and fast rule – you will find all blue or all green rooms and they will be beautiful, but one of the happiest pieces of advice that I have heard and attempt to implement today is to make sure that I balance my cold and warm colors in a room for that overall harmonious feel (you know when you walk into a room and it just feels right? I think this is the secret). Now if only there was the perfect tool to find the right warm orange for the right cool blue.
- Shelter magazines and blogs: color schemes resonate with us when we see them. Pull images from your favorite rooms and dissect to learn what it is about those color palettes that you love.
- Fabrics and photos: pull colors right out of a beautiful swatch of fabric or a favorite photo. They work well there so they’ll work well in your room.
- Fashion: trends in fashion turn into home decor and color inspiration soon after.
- Color wheel: stick to color and use it in various shades (from the lightest light to it’s darkest saturation) – and then head to the opposite side of the color wheel for that ‘pop’.
- Online tools! See below.
A few favorite online tools include:
- Colour Lovers: You can search the millions of palettes for a few specific keywords (I chose teal and brown here) and it offers up hundreds of color combinations to choose from. For those of us stuck in that color rut (why don’t they offer color theory in business school?) it’s kind of a sweet life saver.
- Kate and Katie each shared about their experience with Colortopia and it sounds like a great site to have in that color toolbox. The idea here is that you can upload your own favorite photo and select areas or colors from that image – Colortopia will create several beautiful color schemes for you to play with.
- Elle (a reader) mentioned Design Seeds in the comments, which after checking out I had to add. Maybe they were the designers of the original inspirational palette of that above boutonniere that I saw on Pinterest? What I thought was especially cool is that you can enter a color value (I could use a color directly from my curtain design, for example) into the Palette Search tool and it listed all posted palettes. So neat. Anyway, worth a look:
- Pinterest, Houzz, Etsy & blogs: these are often forgotten about as color tools, but when it comes to online solutions there are few better resources than experts out there that have shared their work. Be it for a party, home or piece of art. Use these experts to inspire good color choices.
Speaking of using alternative inspiration, here’s a wedding shared over at Style Me Pretty that inspires my love of natural wood in the home. Mmm beautiful!
There you have it! This is where I turn when I’m stuck in a color rut.
A quick wrap up: turn to nature, take your room’s temperature, be inspired by shelter magazines & blogs (a few of my favorite who readily offer advice are Emily, Jenny and Janelle – among countless others), find fabrics and photos, take a nod from fashion, don’t forget the all mighty color wheel, utilize online tools (such as Colour Lovers, Colortopia) and turn to a diverse round up of inspirational sites (Pinterest, Houzz, Etsy) and blogs that break out of your traditional design reads (especially wedding sites!).
Any other suggestions out there? am I missing any key tools? At the end of the day, I just love me some color.
Tags: Decorating, Patterns & Color
Posted in Favorites, Home, Our Guestroom/Office, Renovating Adventures, Tools of the Trade | 9 Comments »
Hope you had a great Valentine’s Day!
I have a funny story… Kevin took me to a really lovely restaurant last night in La Jolla (just north of San Diego) called Whisk n Ladle. It’s a place that I’ve wanted to check out for some time and it was delicious! I’m not sure you can call us ‘foodies’ but we’re big on locavore-style restaurants full of unique flavor. If a menu mentions anything with the words ‘fig compote’, ‘breaded goat cheese’ or ‘lavender infused anything’ I start to salivate immediately. It’s the unique pairings that you can’t always accomplish in your own kitchen that I like most about eating out.
Well, this menu was everything and more and I was so excited to try it all. We narrowed our choices down to two specialty cocktails to start, braised pork shoulder with dates and roasted brussel sprouts as well as seared local halibut for our main courses — and to start us off delicious pan fried sweetbreads with onion confit in an au jus sauce. Are you salivating yet? But this is where things got a little crazy. What do you think of when you hear ‘sweetbreads’? (this is officially why we’re not foodies), I was picturing a most delectable french-toast style of handmade bread with an onion confit for dipping. Nope! Sweetbreads are a friendly word for the throat, glands, stomach and intestines of a lamb or calf. We were half way through the appetizer when I decided to Google it because it just didn’t taste like I was expecting… ha! Kevin happily finished off the rest. So maybe he’s the foodie in the family.
Okay, back to a fun little laser cut butterfly art project that brought a little more Spring to our living room.
There’s just something about these natural beauties that is so lovely to look at! And such an easy way to add color and bring nature into a space.
More lovely inspiration:
Lots of folks are not fans of taxidermy butterflies. It doesn’t bother me so much if I’m purchasing from a humane seller who harvests butterflies after they have naturally passed (since many live only 3-4 weeks) but if you’re looking for an alternative (or you don’t want to spend $50-100 for a shadow box) plastic laser cut butterflies are the way to go.
Krista of Kiki’s List (who I learned about from this favorite site) turned me on to Etsy seller Clear Cut Crafts that creates just that – beautiful, natural looking thin plastic butterflies that can be used for cake decor, weddings, you name it.
I placed an order for 2 dozen Monarch colored butterflies (love that orange! and thought they were the most realistic – plus I grew up near Monarch groves which are just beautiful when full of butterflies). To hang them, I found a cheap Ikea frame in silver that I altered just a bit to function as a shadow box.
Butterfly Art (and converting a Ribba frame to a shadow box)
Materials: laser cut butterflies (or the like), Ikea Ribba frame, white construction paper, scissors, pliers, 1″ tack nails, hammer, glue
Using the back of the frame as a guide, I cut out a piece of white construction paper to match. My butterflies came pre-cut (huge time saver! hence the laser cut) and so I gently folded the wings and laid them out on my paper to get an idea of how I wanted the finished display to look.
Once I had settled on a layout I used a white glue (so that I could adjust placing as I went) to hold them in place.
I let this dry over night and began working on the frame. Apparently there is a shadow box frame that Ikea makes – and I thought that I had picked up that version when I found my $4.99 find. But later after arriving back home I realized that while it’s deep for a frame (as most Ikea frames are) the photograph mounting was smooshed right up against the glass.
To create a shadow box out of the Ribba frame, I popped out the glass and mat and pulled out each mounting clasp (is there a more accurate term for those little metal clips?) with pliers.
Then I added small tack nails between the edge of the glass and the frame. Just a gentle bump with the hammer and a little glue held these guys in place. I also let the glue dry overnight.
Now the back of the frame would sit atop the nails and the nails would bridge the distance between the glass and artwork — making the frame a shadow box (and perhaps the cheapest I’ve ever bought).
Since I pulled out the little clasps that keep the back in place (because they were in the wrong location for a shadow box) I simply glued my back to the frame edge. Since it’s a tacky white glue that I used it will hold my artwork in place for as long as I’d like but will allow me to easily pull the back off (maybe with the help of a utility knife) later down the line to update the contents. A glue gun here would be equally useful but might not allow the versatility to easily replace the artwork inside. Let dry overnight if using white glue.
Finally, flip over and hang!
And another shot of the corner of the room with the new butterfly artwork:
Do you have any funny stories to share from Valentine’s Day? Or any new DIY artwork projects? What are your thoughts on butterflies – fake or taxidermied?
More living room posts right here.
Tags: Accessories, Artwork, Before & After, Crafty Solutions, Decorating, DIY, Home, Living Room, Orange, Tutorial
Posted in Crafty Solutions, DIY, Favorites, Home, Our Living Room, Renovating Adventures | 6 Comments »