Use Paint To Add Punch!

After speaking to a decorator recently, he described a common behavior in many of his clients. Clients bring him photos of designer rooms expressing a desire to replicate the look in their own homes. They say they’re ready for a change and want to add some punch to their tired decor. Inevitably, they begin to lose their nerve, and when it comes down to choosing the paint colors, they tone it down two or three shades lower than originally planned. There goes the punch, and the bland decorating scheme returns once again.

This year the trends in paint colors can’t help but pack some punch. If you’ve been dreaming about updating your walls, now is the time. Not only are the colors bright and exciting, they’re being used in interesting ways, only limited by your imagination. It’s ok to mix decorating styles, decor periods, or blend classical with contemporary looks.

The trend toward green construction and building products has spilled over to decorating schemes. Natural products from bamboo, cotton, and wood are popular. As are non-toxic paints, and wall papers with rustic floral or nature inspired patterns. Glass with a clean, transparent look is being used more for dividers and kitchen back splashes.

Earthy colors such as beiges, browns, tans are commonly used, but with stone or mineral accents. A popular avocado green blends well with red, fern, pine or sage, only to be combined with clear blue or aqua for added punch.

On the total opposite end of the spectrum comes a cosmopolitan influence that dares to combine the rustic country feel with the exotic. Take earthy colored metals, such as copper, bronze and gold, and intermingle with Bamboo, Brazilian Cherry or other exotic woods, then add a splash of silk or embroidered velvet.

The Asian influenced, bright-hued colors are also hot this year, like vivid reds, greens, purples, fuchsia, turquoise and bright yellow. The most popular of all is the rich eggplant shade of aubergine. Take these strong shades and temper them with a contrast of metallic silver or a glossy or antique finish.

The other predominant look encourages open spaces, clean lines and functionality. Add to that a whimsical feel, but chic ? designer whimsy, if you will. Begin with a beige or other neutral background and using some of those bright or metallic colors, add an accent wall of bold stripes or psychedelic patterns. Add accessories made from light or dark wood, shiny metal or glass. Other colors drawn from for this look come right out of the 60’s and 70’s, such as bright orange, avocado green, iris blue, acid yellow, or hot pink.

This year, when it comes to paint colors, you have a large palette to work with. Have fun and be creative. When you’re selecting paint samples, dare to choose your original color and you’ll get just the look you were after.

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