Expert Tips On How To Bring BIG Color Into Your Space

Expert Tips On How To Bring BIG Color Into Your Space

Refinery29 | Elizabeth Buxton

There’s no such thing as going wrong with color because, ultimately, color is all about context — and, according to Rebecca Atwood, we all see and feel it differently — it’s personal. The Brooklyn-based designer, artist, and now author of her second design guide, Living With Color, is on a mission to redefine how we consider tints, tones, and shades inside our homes. Atwood graciously answered our beginner Qs about her new book’s subject matter — outlining everything from creating our own palettes to pairing and utilizing color IRL.

Atwood suggests looking to memories when starting a color journey; “Remember the places you have felt best and the colors that surrounded you. Understanding what you love is the most important thing.” “Think about how each color makes you feel and then the purpose of the room you’re using it in,” she shared. Whether you’re starting small with pillowcases and coffee mugs or going big with armchairs and rugs, Atwood provides the meaningful framework for introducing color into your home — and we provide the shoppable suggestions for putting it into practice.

Scroll on to starting living with color and, as Atwood puts it, allowing yourself, “to appreciate the little moments of joy color can create.”

 

Color Isn’t All About Brights Versus Neutrals
“Color can be quiet but rich, light and breezy, comforting and cozy, deep and moody. We often think first about bright, saturated color but then you’re missing out on all the tints, tones, and shades of a color. ‘Neutrals’ are just less saturated versions of a color.”
Reprinted from Living With Color. Copyright © 2019 by Rebecca Atwood. Photographs copyright © 2019 by Sharon Radisch. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.
Photographs copyright © 2019 by Sharon Radisch.

 

Choose Color Combinations That You Respond To
“Spend time really looking during your day-to-day and notice what you’re drawn to…Think about how each color makes you feel and then the purpose of the room you’re using it in. If green makes you feel calm (think about how you’d feel just walking through a path in the forest), it’s a great choice for the bedroom.”

 

Use Popular Color Combinations As A Guide
“– A classic palette for me: tomato red, peach, ocean blue, rose-taupe, gray-lilac, and navy
– Dune grass green, cloud blue, sand, taupe, a deeper green — I’m imagining the green of window shutters on a house on Cape Cod
– Buttery yellow with a hint of green in it (reminds me of spring!), soft tangerine, cloud blue, navy, taupe”
Reprinted from Living With Color. Copyright © 2019 by Rebecca Atwood. Photographs copyright © 2019 by Sharon Radisch. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.

Work nook, available at World Market.
Photo: Courtesy of World Market.

 

Find Your Artistic Muse
“Look to nature and artists for how they use color. I’m always inspired by David Hockney and Matisse for their color choices.”

 

Experiment With Warm & Cool Color Combinations
“A tomato red might not feel so bold when paired next to a coral and a blush — it’s just an evolution of that array of colors. But, if you put that tomato next to a denim blue it can vibrate and pop with intensity.”
Reprinted from Living With Color. Copyright © 2019 by Rebecca Atwood. Photographs copyright © 2019 by Sharon Radisch. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.

 

Try Color Mixing With A Surprising Bright Shade
“A color that you might think you don’t like can become something you love through the mix of colors. For example, I’m really not a big fan of a hot pink. But if you pair it with an inky purple-blue, a camo hunter green, gray-lilac, and a terracotta it could be really beautiful.”
Reprinted from Living With Color. Copyright © 2019 by Rebecca Atwood. Photographs copyright © 2019 by Sharon Radisch. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.
Photographs copyright © 2019 by Sharon Radisch.

 

Use Small Accents To Introduce Color Into Your Home
“Start small – pillowcases on your bed, a cup for your morning coffee, a vase of flowers, a little arrangement of objects on your shelf. Just make some time to play and notice how you feel about the colors. Allow yourself to appreciate the little moments of joy color can create. Once you feel more confident on how the colors make you feel you can start making plans for a room.”

 

Invest In Colorful Ceramics
“Ceramics are a favorite of mine. I love to collect them. Some of my favorites are Workday Handmade, Helen Levi, Andrew Molleur, Scargo Pottery. I also love these colorful hand blown glasses from Balefire Glass. Of course artwork too! My friend Charlotte Hallberg is an amazing artist and explores color and light in these amazing paintings.”

 

Go Big With Colorful Statement Pieces
“I love a bright armchair as it really invites you to sit in it. It’s an easier place to start than a sofa. You can even just drape a colorful textile over the back to see how it makes you feel before committing to reupholstering or buying something new. Window treatments are also a really luxe place to add color. They frame the room. A colorful rug can add impact but also feel very grounded — it doesn’t overwhelm just by the nature of where it is.”
Reprinted from Living With Color. Copyright © 2019 by Rebecca Atwood. Photographs copyright © 2019 by Sharon Radisch. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.
Photographs copyright © 2019 by Sharon Radisch.

 

Try Out The Next Big Trends In Color
“I definitely feel this gray-lilac color I love so much is popping up more. I also feel green is having a resurgence. It’s great to see this as I think it’s related to our desire for more nature in our lives. I hope to see people embracing more personal color choices too.”

 

Living With Color
“Color is all about context, so the right color depends on what it will be paired with and how it will be used. In my book I’ll walk you through going on a color hunt to notice what you love and creating a wheel of your colors. Once you have those particular versions of a hue you can play with combinations to create a palette.”
Reprinted from Living With Color. Copyright © 2019 by Rebecca Atwood. Photographs copyright © 2019 by Sharon Radisch. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.

This article was written by Elizabeth Buxton from Refinery29 and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@newscred.com.

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