Saturday, February 7, 2015

Colour Palette, Part 3: The Colours!

In Part 1, I talked about how  had essentially stumbled upon my colour palette by accident when I was putting the finishing touches on my living room.

In Part 2, I talked about how my hard finishes dictate whether the paeltte I choose for the house is based upon cream or white.

Now, finally, we're at the point where I can talk about the colours.

Lately, I've come across an interesting decorating blog called Teal & Lime. She has one post on choosing a whole house colour scheme which was completely fascinating and eye opening to me.

The first decision to be made is whether or not you want your neutrals to complement or contrast with your fixed elements. Your colours are a separate thing.

That was so freeing to me. My house has a lot of wood: wood with red and orange undertones. The wood is definitely a fixed element! My countertop (since I have no plans to change it) is another--as are my black and off-white tiled floors in the kitchen. The wood --all of it-- has warm undertones.

Although I like contrast, painting the walls to contrast these warm tones has never felt completely right. It felt too much like I was ignoring the house. So, for years, I've felt stuck into creating a warm colour scheme.

Living room, painted with MSL029 Glass of Milk on the walls and HC -143 Wythe Blue in the coving.

Obviously, I got over that in my living room this fall. But, as I explained in Part 1, I kind of stumbled into my palette.

To recap:

neutrals: black, white, cream, grey, navy, cognac
colours: deep blue-blue-green, turquoise.

(The rug looks like a dark blue and it is, but it is not just blue--there seems to be a hint of green in it.)

When it came time to do the kitchen, I had already decided on the deep jade for the cabinets. The colours in my shade fabric were the next to be introduced.

Kitchen walls painted RL4343, Elgin Gray

The colours in the fabric are essentially deep jade, navy and a periwinkle blue. I'm not really a fan of that periwinkle, so I am going to ignore it for now.

But, do you see a pattern?

Neutrals: black, white, grey (silver), navy, cream
Colours: deep jade (deep blue-green-green)

We've seen those neutrals before!

Moreover, that creamy white and that grey are warm. Both have healthy doses of yellow in their formulas. Both are gentle with the house.

But my colours, they are all cool. They contrast. Given I'm a fan of contrast, that just seems right to me.

So, that jade colour, though new, is connected to the colours in the living room: all my colours are on the cool side of the colour wheel.

(This is not your typical colour wheel, but I love how the creator of this one was sensitive to all the nuances of blue-green.)

As you can see, blue, blue-green (in all its various manifestations) and green are next to each other on the colour wheel. They're analogous. It is a highly harmonious colour palette. If they are next to each other throughout my house, the house should be harmonious, too.

This gives me direction for the rest of the house, too, which is excellent news.

Moving forward, my walls will be either grey (Elgin Grey by Ralph Lauren) or that creamy white (Glass of Milk by Martha Stewart).

I may introduce a feature or accent wall in shades (darker) or tints (lighter) of all my blue-greens. In other words, all the colours in the colour wheel above between green and blue..

From the top of the colour wheel, moving counter-clockwise:

dark bluish green (AF-510, Dragonfly by Benjamin Moore, kitchen cabinets)

bluish green (MSL 131, Feldspar by Martha Stewart, the accent wall in my bedroom). The bedding is a continuous happy work in progress....(in this shot the bed is all decked out in my neutrals; navy, grey, cream/white.)

turquoise (HC-143, Wythe Blue, by Benjamin Moore, the coving in the living room.

dark bluish-cyan, (MQ 5-25, Rush Hour, by Behr Marquee, on the backs of the living room bookcases)

or dark dark blue (2063-10, Old Navy, Benjamin Moore, kitchen chairs)

I am very anxious to paint my front hall way, my back hallway and the stairwell. I should also paint the dining room. (Not looking forward to that at all.)

I am pretty sure the stairwell will be Glass of Milk. But that doesn't mean I can't paint the bookcase wall (and the bookcases) something like Marquee's Rush Hour (the geek in me loves the idea of painting two bookcases in two different areas the same colour).

You know, this area here:

We shall see if I really want to go that dark.

(And I cannot tell you how much I want that yellow-green out of my life.)

It's exciting to have a plan. But it doesn't answer this pressing question: should I paint the dining room off-white to relate to the living room--or grey, to go with the kitchen?

And, I am curious: do you think a tight colour scheme like this might be a bit boring?


Marie said...

I want to say "paint your dining room / study gray" because it looks so fabulous in your kitchen (and I wish I could use that colour in my own home), however the window trim and floors are completely different in each room. I love the gray in the kitchen because of the way it complements and contrasts with the white window trim and black and white floors. I wonder if it would look so calming with the wood floors and wood trim on the window? Perhaps the creamy white would be better in the dining room / study.

Alana, you have SO MUCH variety in all your colours yet (esp the green to blue range) so no, it's not boring. it is very thoughtful and deliberate. Flowing from one room to the next with similar but different colours brings cohesion to your home. Very well done!

I LOVE your colour chart. Where did you get it?

Alana in Canada said...

Thanks Marie. You know, I totally missed that about the floors and trim. You're right. There's more wood here--but given the shelves? I'm not so sure there's more wood than white. The light in here is the same as the living room--north--hmmmm.

About the colour wheel--I just did a google image search.

thefarmersdaughter said...

wow! I'm just getting to doing the new color pallet for the main rooms now.... you're so far ahead of me! Your rooms look fantastic by the way.

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