The first magazine I picked up showed a house that had different shades of blue paint (probably from the same paint color strip) on all the walls, in every room, throughout that house. They showed a blue front hall with staircase, a blue living room and dining room, and even a blue walled kitchen. The spaces looked zen-calm, airy, and also soo Spring-like at the same time.
The second magazine I picked up had blue patterned drapes and upholstered club chairs in a living room, along with other blue accessories. The large patterned predominately blue fabric used on the drapes and chairs, made a bold and graphic modern statement in that room.
The third use of blue that caught my eye was when a designer / homeowner covered a pair of sofas in a sapphire / indigo blue velvet fabric. Those bold looking, rich and dark-colored sofas were soo beautifully dramatic, and at the same time looked comfortably cozy.
The fourth magazine I paged through featured a large collection of Chinese Blue and White vases, urns, bowls, etc on its cover. Blue and white porcelain has been a classic, used in decorating for hundreds of years. The popularity of blue and white ceramics goes through periods when it’s more or less attractive to the decorating crowd. It’s nice to see it, hopefully, on the upswing again.
When decorating a room in the color blue, or if you like, your whole house, the best place to start pulling your blue tones from is an inspiration piece. An inspiration piece could be (1) a Chinese blue and white vase, bowl, dish, etc, (2) a patterned fabric or carpet that is predominately blue, or has some blue in it as part that textile’s color story, (3) wood or metal furniture if it is painted blue, or (4) the blue from a wallpaper border, like shown above.
If a person was starting a blue color scheme with an inspiration piece like the solid colored sapphire / indigo velvet fabric used to upholster the two sofas, that I wrote about earlier; they should first find a paint color strip with an exact paint color match to the sapphire / indigo velvet on it. Any of the other lighter colors on that single paint color strip would work perfectly with the sapphire / indigo velvet. Being a dark color, the sapphire / indigo color on the paint color strip would, most likely be the darkest shade on that paint strip. All of the lighter tones on that single paint color strip would be made by adding different amounts of white to the sapphire / indigo to lighten it. The lightest tone of all the colors on that single paint strip is called a tint. It has the most white added to it of all the different tone on that single paint strip.
Now on the flip side, if a person had an inspiration piece that had a light or medium tone of blue on it, and wanted to put it with other tones of blue, they should first find a paint color strip that has an exact match to the light or medium blue on that inspiration piece (fabric, carpeting, etc), and any of the darker or lighter colors on that single paint color strip would work perfectly with the blue tone on the inspiration piece. Again, all the tones are from the same color family.The above photo shows how a variety of different tones of blue were pulled from the predominate inspiration piece, the Chinese Oriental Rug. The darkest shade of blue on the paint color strip is almost a perfect match to the background color of the carpet. Any of the lighter tones on the paint color strip would work nicely as paint for walls or color for fabric choices.
The photo also show how multicolored fabrics, which have blue and green as part of their color story, help to bridge (bring together) the deep blue of the carpet and the deep green fabric used on the sofas. Both the stripe and floral fabrics have green and blue tones on them. With a color story like this, other furniture pieces upholstered in coral tones, golds and creams would work well.
Looking at the different colors shown on the rug and fabric samples in the photo, a person could paint their walls blue, gold, coral pink, blue-green or even different cream to putty tones pulled from the off white edging of the carpet.
Also, looking at the photo, notice how the carpet is the predominate pattern shown, and the floral upholstery fabric is less strong. Also notice how arching flowers work around the edge of the area rug, and similar, but more delicate arching shapes are on the upholstery fabric. There is a similarity of movement between the two, which suggests they belong together.The above photo shows
The colors that I personally felt worked best, with some/all of the different tones of blue, on the three paint color strips, that were next to each other in a paint color fan, are arranged around them. To me, I liked a lot of the blue-greens, some lime greens, taupes (gray-beige), some golds and soft yellows, different tones of gray, a few browns, as well as true red, blue toned reds, burgundys, rose pinks and purples. I also found that I likes some, but not too many, mossy greens with the blue tones. The majority of the paint colors I liked were part of the blue based colors shown on the lower part of the color wheel; they are below the center horizontal line. The paint samples I liked least, with the three blue paint color sample strips, are paints that are yellow based. They would be part of the warm colors shown above the center horizontal line on the color wheel. Those color seemed to be a bit too yellow-green, golden-brown, red-orange, celery toned, rusty, or too coral pink or orange looking. Even though orange is the exact opposite of blue, many tones of orange I found too harsh to pair with blue, unless used sparingly as an accent when interior decorating. I think some tangerine and apricot tones look nice, as long as they were not too bright.
Paint color parings are a personal thing. My opinions about color might differ from yours, but my advice to you is, if you have a paint color that you like (are set on), and want to pair it with other paint colors, do as I did, and pass it by every other paint color strip at the paint store. Take one of each paint sample that you like home with you. When you get home, you will, with time, be able to whittle down your choices to just a few, and you will finally pick from them, the right one for you.
A lot of the time you will not have to go through all the work of figuring out what goes with a color like blue, when decorating. If you have an inspiration piece with a color like blue on it, and there are other colors on that fabric, rug, etc, all of those other colors will work perfectly when decorating your room.
I hope this post got you thinking about, what I think will be the next trendy, the color blue. Blue is a classic that has been around forever. A color like Radiant Orchid might be in for a season. but will be quickly dismisses, and once gone never heard of again.
If you are thinking about introducing blue into your home, even as an accent color, try to have / use it in a few places in the room you are decorating. If any color is just placed in one spot, the eye goes right to it, and stays there. If you put it in three or four places in a room, the eye keeps moving from one bit of that color to the next bit of that color. Interior decorating is all about moving color and repeating patterns from one spot in the room to another.
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