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Get Your Home Mojo Working: Tips & Inspiration to Use Bold Color
Posted By Cheryl Terrace On February 24, 2009 @ 4:36 pm In Eco Decorating, Green Living | No Comments
Mardi Gras is this week — and its colorful mix of cultures brimming with delicious spices is fantastic inspiration for home design. Bold use of COLOR is the new trend in all the design magazines; I think it reflects the times — a bold new world and mold-breaking new administration.
Let the colors of paprika, cinnamon, turmeric, chili pepper, coriander, cocoa and chicory  inspire you to spice up your space!
Don’t be afraid — you CAN use lots of bold color without going overboard. My client Hal Hinkle (a big-time greenie)  now calls this “the happiest room in his penthouse” on the upper west side — but I had to nudge him into it.
“You want to paint my living room racecar red?!” he’d asked. But when I answered, “Yup,” he said, “Lets try it — it’s paint … we can always paint it over it.” But then he loved it!
Try these tips to help you use rich, vibrant color fearlessly in your home décor:
Incorporate lots of natural elements such as natural linen drapery or natural home furniture  and fixtures.
Think jambalaya, gumbo, crayfish étouffée. The spices add flavor and color, but are not the main ingredient.
I used neutral window coverings to ground the vibrant red in Hal’s penthouse. You can use anything from a neutral-hued sofa or pillows to a neutral area rug  or simply a wood floor.
Many dyes are harmful to the health of workers and the environment. Opt for organic towels , organic bedding , furnishings, carpeting and paint. The “race-car” red I used in Hal Hinkle’s penthouse is from Farrow & Ball  — check out their great selection of environmentally friendly paints.
… and tweak your color scheme to make it fit without being out of place (or, God forbid, garish). I’d never design a Santa Fe motif in New York City. You can see how one wall of Hal’s space looks like a brighter red than the other wall in these photos — just because of the difference in the angle of the natural light.
Accent your spaces with hand-painted vases, handmade floor pillows or meditation cushions, decorative plates and wall art, hand-carved treasures, and shawls or throws to drape over chairs.
Just a few accents, in the deep colors used in many traditional designs, can really “pop” and add drama and energy to a room. And in the process you can help preserve craftsmanship techniques handed down through generations  of indigenous cultures.
I adore almost everything about the city of New Orleans: its music, food, architecture, people, even the hot weather! I go often to visit my family (my sister lives there) and I’ve enjoyed many (many) Mardi Gras and Jazz Festivals. The vibrance inspires me! So I want to share with you some of my favorite New Orleans sources to inspire you to spice up your home and life:
There’s no place like (down) home. IKO IKO all day!
Article printed from Gaiam Blog: http://blog.gaiam.com
URL to article: http://blog.gaiam.com/home-mojo-tips-inspiration-to-use-bold-color/
URLs in this post:
 chicory: http://www.cafedumonde.com/coffee.html
 Hal Hinkle (a big-time greenie): http://www.thehcf.org/globalwarmingintro.html
 natural home furniture: http://www.gaiam.com/category/eco-home-outdoor/living-space/furniture.do?SID=WG107SPRTAPEMACS
 neutral area rug: http://www.gaiam.com/category/eco-home-outdoor/living-space/rugs.do?SID=WG107SPRTAPEMACS
 Image: http://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/click?id=ikoB54HG8Ag&offerid=140003.10005614&type=3&subid=0
 organic towels: http://www.gaiam.com/product/thick+-+thirsty+organic+towels.do?SID=WG107SPRTAPEMACS
 organic bedding: http://www.gaiam.com/category/eco-home-outdoor/bedroom.do?SID=WG107SPRTAPEMACS
 Farrow & Ball: http://www.farrow-ball.com
 recycled-soda-bottle rug: http://www.gaiam.com/product/french+quarter+pattern+reversible+all-weather+floor+mat.do?SID=WG107SPRTAPEMACS
 Image: http://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/click?id=ikoB54HG8Ag&offerid=127265.10002972&type=3&subid=0
 craftsmanship techniques handed down through generations: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/How-Does-Fair-Trade-Makes-a-Difference-One-World-by-Gaiam-in-Action.html
 Etsy’s Bayou section: http://www.etsy.com/storque/spotlight/etsy-finds-journey-down-to-the-bayou-3486/
 Fair Trade products: http://www.gaiam.com/category/fair-trade.do?SID=WG107SPRTAPEMACS
 Magazine Street: http://www.magazinestreet.com/
 biennial: http://www.newyorker.com/arts/critics/artworld/2008/11/24/081124craw_artworld_schjeldahl
 Brad Pitt’s Make It Right project: http://www.treehugger.com/files/2008/09/brad-pitts-new-orleans-under-construction.php
 listen online: http://www.wwoz.org/programs/streams
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