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Nov 24

Color My World - 2010

Posted by C. Mason Hearn in remodeling, design
  The psychological influence of our environment is undeniable.  As the Creator established and continually transforms our natural environment, we designers of city plans, architecture, landscape, interiors and decorative / industrial goods exert a similar influence on the built environment.

I will be the first to admit that picking colors is not my primary area of competence.  Architectural design, however, is only a piece of what makes our built environment "come alive".  Materials selections, textures, and color are huge considerations in conveying a design statement.  Good design should connect with those exposed, adjust their attitude and move them to some desired end.

I attended a presentation by Benjamin Moore last week, called Color Pulse 2010.  At the risk of compromising my masculinity, I sat in the ballroom of The Jefferson Hotel surrounded mostly by female interior designers as the company rolled-out their projections for the new "hot colors".

The journey that BM's color prognosticators traveled to arrive at their palette du jour was fascinating.  They attended shows of trade, art and fashion around the globe to find some common threads - color and otherwise - between all of these.  Commonalities were established and categorized under the main theme "Authenticity".

Influences guiding this authentic color collection include:

"Genesis" - honest materials of eco-inspiration

"Ingenuity" - right-brain-dominated inventiveness and creativity

"The New Luxury" - remarkably unique displays of extravagance

One especially wonders whether the last influence would be there, should the color team have had the benefit of considering the present global economy as their materials were going to print during the last two months.  There has always been, however, some merit to the conveyance of hope, fancy and whimsy in all things design.

I am certain that everyone wants to know "ALRIGHT, darnit, what ARE the colors, anyway?"  Well, it's actually a palette of 50-some colors.  My general take-away is that greyscale or light (parchment) naturals serve as a background to fresher, vibrant versions of various hues.

It is obvious that the previous slam-dunk crowd pleasers like the earth-toned muted Pottery Barn Collection colors are no longer the rage.  You'll hear from me, both a sigh (as those were so easy to sell, "do" and coordinate), and applause (thank goodness we're becoming more lively!).

My wife and I are already selecting from the 2010 swatches to repaint our foyer.  Regardless my color-challenged design ability, nobody's going to accuse me of being oh-so-yesterday!


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