Sunday, 01 August 2010 21:57

How Colors and Patterns Can Jazz Up Space

Written by Angela S Colley
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dining room 1

Are you afraid of adding color on your walls or introducing patterns in your space? Why? There is no need. Color and patterns add excitement to any space. Today, trends in home décor focus on the family and ancestral pasts. We see global influences on colors with bold hues and on patterns with ethnic geometric forms. Don’t let this frighten you. You might be surprised. Think outside of the box, take a leap of faith and let’s explore.

Yes, monochromatic is safe, but jazz it up with textures.  Textures with various levels of luster in a room create depth and movement. Furniture finished in a high gloss, with textured walls (i.e. grass cloth covering or orange peel paint finish), or furniture covered in suede or smooth leather combined with chenille or corduroy upholstered furniture add excitement. Using the same color, the textures and finishes generate interest.  Are you visualizing this? It looks exotic.

What about Patterns?
Patterns that are formed from shapes, lines or a repeating series draw attention. It’s important that you find a pattern that you like. Most commonly used patterns include floral, stripe, vertical or horizontal lines and geometrics. A pattern can be subtle or bold. That’s your choice. If going bold, use patterns sparingly. You don’t want a clash of patterns to create chaos.



Remember, patterns can be mixed if in the same color palette. Global influences have presented us with so many patterns to choose from, like African prints (Kuba, bark, mud and Kente cloths), Indian textile prints, Central and South America Ikat prints, Persian and Moroccan patterns, and Central Asia Suzani prints. Choose colors from a print (use as the focal point) and use those colors throughout the room on the walls, window treatments, furnishing and or accessories.

ikatPrint kentecloth




What’s in a Color?
Did you know color sets the mood? It manipulates volume and dimension, and draws attention to space. It has its own language. While similar colors create warmth and stable spaces, contrasting colors create active and dynamic spaces.




Red symbolizes strength, vitality and stamina, plus passion, sex and love. It is a popular color for the bedroom. Orange is a color that promotes community, health and safety. It is popular in dining rooms and areas where people generally meet to socialize. Yellow is the people color. It symbolizes friendship, optimism, stimulates the brain and nervous system, and is welcoming. Green is soothing, calming, relaxing and symbolizes renewal. Blue is still very popular today, promotes a sense of tranquility, stability, meditation and lowers the blood pressure. Violet (purple) represents royalty, luxury, mystery, spirituality and creativity. White represents peace, purity, innocence, hope, cleanliness and sterility; black is elegant, dramatic, classic and sophisticated. Gray is conservative, somber and traditional.

Using the color combination of black, white and gray creates dramatic or subdued spaces. Neutrals, which include ivory, cream, beige, tan, camel and brown, are considered safe and comfortable. They are also considered as earthy, safe and familiar.



Follow your emotions when choosing colors for your home. Paint color swatches on your walls to see how you feel and how they look. Remember, colors take on different shades depending on the light levels in a room.

Don’t be afraid to mix color and patterns to create the rooms of your dreams.


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Angela S Colley, ASID|CAPS

D# 5487 • IB# 26001097

A C Styles Designs, LLC

621 SW 178th Way
Pembroke Pines, FL 33029