Where to Start – Color


Lobby, Interior Design by Alexander Interiors LLC

Strangely, when considering color, you must first analyze how your home is sited on the lot.  Weird, huh? What you’re looking for is the direction each room faces?  This is important because you’ll want to determine of the amount of sunlight entering each room of your home. That then will drive the color you put on your walls. Have you ever been in a room with a southerly exposure, with the sun blasting through the windows, and all the fabrics in the room were in golds and oranges?  The intensity of light and color will keep you away from that room any time in mid-day.  Ideally, warm colors  (e.g, gold, red, orange) are used in rooms with a northerly exposure and cool colors (e.g., green, blue) are used with a southerly exposure.  This is a way to compensate for the amount of sun and light that comes into each room and the psychological aspect of how color is perceived in the space.  The cool colors that are in sunny rooms help to cut down on how hot the room feels, and warm colors in dark rooms that have little sunlight help to make the room feel warmer.

Would you like to see where I frequently start my color selections? Look down. If you’re standing on a Persian carpet you’ve discovered my secret. I frequently recommend a Persian carpet for the foyer of a home.  Now, before you go running from the room because you think you hate oriental carpets, bear with me for a moment.  Persian carpets come in a vast array of patterns, colors and designs.  One reason why I like them so much is that if you want a lot of color, they add a lot of color.  If you don’t want a lot of color, they can be found in all neutrals.  Also, they add an interesting pattern to the space.  If you do have a Persian carpet, draw out its main colors into the surrounding areas.  When drawing the color out of the carpet, limit yourself to three colors that work well together.  Always choose a color that will dominate in quantity, and two other colors that will be used in lesser amounts.  If you don’t have, or don’t want, a Persian carpet how about a family heirloom that has great sentimental value?  It could be a set of china, or even a simple vase. The key is to understand yourself and go from there. 

There will be more on color at a later date. – Alexander Interiors, McLean, VA

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