Design Drama

documenting the delicate dance of design

My 2 Cents on Home Renovations/Decorating April 14, 2008

Filed under: artistic angst,inspiration — Beth D @ 10:40 pm

Just like about everyone I know, I love to decorate — little excites me more than the prospect of getting “new” anything. Lately, it seems at least 3 people I know are refurbishing a home, or at least a room in their house. I guess since I have a degree in art, people think I’m some sort of expert on this type of thing, and ask my opinion. I’m not an expert, but I do know that one of the cheapest methods of redecorating ones home is to freshen up the color scheme via paint.

In my years of talking to people about these home issues, I’ve encountered more people than I can count that develop a twitch when it comes to choosing and settling on paint colors. There seems to be a lot of angst that comes along with painting the interior of one’s home. I see where the drama comes in — painting can be a hassle as well as pricey if one is hiring a professional to do the job.

When I started out in this artistic path that I am now on, I began my formal (read: paid for) education as an aspiring interior designer. I did it all: drafting house plans and elevations for commercial and residential structures, choosing fabric for chairs and drapery and deciding whether hardwoods would compliment a space better than berber carpets. In the course of all this picking and choosing the elements that give a home a unique style, I encountered a very solid piece of advice regarding paint color: one should look in ones closet at the color palatte of the clothes hanging inside – those colors have been picked because we are comfortable surrounded by them.

At first, I found this advice to be questionable, because I have a myriad of colors in my closet, but I live my life in a uniform of blue jeans and t-shirts of every color of the rainbow. Also, being a typical artist, I tend to gravitate toward my share of black clothing.

The theory was tested when I had the chance to pick paint colors a few years back when I was living with a roommate who had recently bought a home and was in the process of redecorating, starting with painting the rooms on the second floor. As luck would have it, I got to exercise my repressed interior design itch — In the end, the colors I chose were a very light green for my bedroom, chocolate browns for the two full bathrooms and a bright orange for my office — all colors of which I later realized came from my own wardrobe. And true to the advice from years past, those colors were hues in which I found myself very happy. I even saved paint chips for future reference.

So, there you have it — at least from my experience, wardrobe colors are at least some subliminal choice in the colors we live with best. And remember, if you hate that paint color, you can always start anew.


One Response to “My 2 Cents on Home Renovations/Decorating”

  1. (evil)amy Says:

    So, I should pain my house black, red, and purple? OK, probably not, but I do plan stick stick within what I have referred to as the Scissorhands Palette: pale blue, lavender, eggplant, and grey if I need a pseudo-neutral. It’s just a bit more stressful to paint in dark colors cause they’re so much harder to paint over.

    In real life, I’ll probably pick out remnants at the fabric store and then hang them on the wall to get an idea of colors working together. In my 11 years of wearing black, I fear I have lost the color mojo.

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