Thursday, April 3, 2014

Four Fabric Foray – Tranquil Teal

One of the most inspiring places to start an interior decorating scheme is with fabrics… certain hues and patterns have a way of drawing you in without you even realizing it.  As you move through a fabric showroom, you will find yourself feeling drawn to cool colors or warm, busy patterns or simple solids or tone-on-tones, smooth textures or more tactile surfaces.  As with a Ouija board, if you just let yourself go, you will end up right where you belong!  There are so many gorgeous fabrics making their way into the showrooms right now, it seems hard to go wrong! 

But what about combining fabrics?  How comfortable are you with doing this?  If you are a little nervous about it, the easiest approach is to find a color that you love, and then stick with it.  It doesn’t have to be boring, as long as you mix up the solids with the prints, the scale of the patterns, and the intensity of the colors and backgrounds.

Naturally, what you are using the fabrics for certainly makes a difference.  Certain fibers, weaves and weights are more desirable on a sofa, whereas others are more suitable to hang at the window.  And the scale of a pattern in small doses will have a completely different impact than circling a room in it.

Here is an example of a lovely combination of four fabrics in a soft teal color… there is a small-scale geometric print in taupe, soft teal and cream, a naturalist embroidered pattern of teal pussy willows with taupe stems, on a cream back ground, a woven that read like a solid, although it has teal and taupy threads, an over-all tile pattern with taupe ground and multi-toned teals.

What kind of mood do you think these fabrics create?  Would you combine them in your home?  If so, what would you use each fabric on?

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Radiant Orchid – A Captivating Purple With Beguiling Charm

Whenever the Pantone Color Institute introduces their Color of the Year, everyone in the design community as well as interior-loving public is abuzz about it.  This year’s color is Radiant Orchid, a vibrant shade of violet that they describe as “a captivating, magical, enigmatic purple.” 

I have to say that I was all about the purple tones well before their announcement for 2014, when I enveloped my space, “Syrena’s Room” in the Museums of Old York show house, in lush lilac and lavenders hues this past summer.  So I guess it is fair fro me to say that I am indeed a trend setter!  Many of the elements of Radiant Orchid that Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, described were also the ideas that I had in mind as I created my room for a surf and mermaid-loving teen girl at “Secret Cove”… Leatrice said that Radiant Orchid “intrigues the eye and sparks the imagination,” and is “an enchanting harmony of fuchsia, purple and pink undertones, which inspires confidence and emanates great joy, love and health.” 

In recent months I have been seeing a greater interest and availability of all things purple, from fabrics to furnishings to accessories (and even fashion), everywhere from the Boston DesignCenter to Calico.  Here are some examples that feature shades of purple from quiet and subtle to lively and intense, in patterns and styles from simple, to traditional, to bold…

So... what are your thoughts on Radiant Orchid, and all of its purple-hued friends on the color wheel?
(All photos taken by me)