Category Archives: Color Inspiration

Color Inspiration: 3 Hot Color Combos

Why let just one color have all the fun? Here are three hot color combinations you can use for an instant update to your room’s decor.

1. Pink + Orange

Bold, energetic, and youthful – Pink and orange is a fun combination that will add a huge dose of personality to any room. Make the colors pop against an all-white canvas, or layer in metallics, deep wood tones, and complimentary colors like aqua, plum, and green.

Color Inspiration: Pink + OrangeSource
Color Inspiration: Pink + OrangeSource
Color Inspiration: Pink + OrangeSource
Color Inspiration: Pink + OrangeSource
Color Inspiration: Pink + OrangeSource

For an elegant, luxe look, use mellower versions of pink and orange (think soft blush and peachy hues) like Kelly Wearstler did in the sitting room below.

Color Inspiration: Pink + OrangeSource

Get the look!

Hot Color Combo: Pink + Orange | Chicago ReDesignBedding | Orange Chair | Bookcase | Sofa | Pink Pillow | Print Pillow | Mirror | Pink Chair | Shower Curtain | Lamp Shade

2. Yellow + Gray

Sophisticated and modern – The contrast between warm yellows and cool grays adds balance to a space, and can simultaneously feel timeless and contemporary. Vary the feel of your room with the tone of each color – More intense yellows and darker grays will feel very modern and hip, while mute shades of sunny yellow and softer grays will feel cheery and relaxed.

Color Inspiration: Yellow + GraySourceColor Inspiration: Yellow + Gray Source
Color Inspiration: Yellow + GraySource
Color Inspiration: Yellow + GraySource
Color Inspiration: Yellow + GraySource

Get the look!

Hot Color Combo: Yellow + Gray | Chicago ReDesignPillows | Square Lamp | Armchair | Pouf | Sofa | Vase | Rug | Shower Curtain | Gourd Lamp

3. Red + Aqua

Dramatic and exotic – Red and aqua (or turquoise, or light blue if you prefer) will certainly make a statement that people remember. For the walls, light taupe shades make a great backdrop for this stunning combo to shine. Add in gold and ochre hues as well as natural elements like bamboo shades or a sisal rug to bring a calming influence into the space… or play up the contrast with other pops of bold color like yellow and green.

Color Inspiration: Red + AquaSource
Color Inspiration: Red + AquaSource
Color Inspiration: Red + AquaSource
Color Inspiration: Red + AquaSource

Get the look!

Hot Color Combo: Red + Aqua | Chicago ReDesignFrame | Vase | Bookcase | Media Console | Lamp | Drapes | Couch | Rug | Lamp Shade | Trash Can | Dining Chair

Which ones of these is your favorite combination? Have you decorated with ones of these palettes before? I’d love to hear more!

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Color Inspiration: Gustav Klimt’s ‘Golden Phase’

I absolutely love the artwork of Gustav Klimt, so this week I was inspired to put together a mood board based on work produced during his ‘Golden Phase’. As I’m sure you can glean from the title, gold is featured heavily in the palette of these pieces (Klimt often used actual gold leaf in the work and it’s truly spectacular when viewed in real life) but with an ample dose of color. Rich blues, bright reds and oranges, deep greens, and even art-deco-ish blocks of black compliment the metallic gold “star” in these paintings.

Color Inspiration: Gustav Klimt's 'Golden Phase' | Chicago ReDesign

Gustav Klimt, ‘The Kiss’

Color Inspiration: Gustav Klimt's 'Golden Phase' | Chicago ReDesign

Gustav Klimt, ‘Adele Bloch-Bauer I’

My mood board…

Color Inspiration: Gustav Klimt's 'Golden Phase' | Chicago ReDesign

Lamp | Lampshade | Sculpture | Leaves | Wallpaper | Side Table | Rug | Couch | Purple Lumbar Pillow | Gold Flame Pillow | Black + White Pillow

Let me know what you think. Do you like the gold + color palette? Also, what inspires you? If you have any mood boards you would like to share send them my way – I love to see what others have created!

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Get The Look: Blue Moroccan Bedroom

Bedroom Designed by Martin Horner | House Beautiful

House Beautiful

The May edition of House Beautiful featured a Michigan lake house designed by Chicago’s own Martin Horner. The color blue is prominent throughout the home, as are Eastern elements and detailed patterns. I absolutely loved this blue bedroom and wanted to steal the look for myself (which is odd because I normally don’t go for this much color and pattern). But the monochromatic palette and lush layers of pattern work to create an interesting retreat where one could escape to relax and recharge.  I think it would be like a mini-vacation to a far-off land every time you stepped into the room. Honestly, I kind of wish I could dive into this photo and hang out here for awhile.

So here is my budget-friendly take on the room above…

Get The Look: Blue Moroccan Bedroom | Chicago ReDesign

Pillow | Bolster | Wallpaper | Bed | Artwork | Box | Bowl | Lamp | Bedding | Rug | Side Table

What do you think? Do you like all the blue or is it too much for your tastes? Do you think this look would work with any other color? I’d love to hear what you have to say!

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Color Inspiration: Cool Coastal Palette

My twin sister is getting married on the beach in Florida in a little less than two weeks and I’m so excited for the upcoming trip. I haven’t been to the ocean in a while and it will be another couple of firsts with my daughter – first time on a plane and first time at the ocean. One of those firsts has me slightly nervous by the way (if you guessed flying with a toddler in tow, you’d be correct). But my anticipation for the trip is outweighing my trepidation at this point, and I hope that feeling lasts.

Anyway, thoughts of being on the beach had me thinking about a soothing coastal palette – calm, muted colors that look as if they have been faded by the sun and worn by the sea in hues that represent a little bit of ocean, sky, sand, and clouds

Coastal Palette Mood Board | Chicago ReDesign

Lamp | Coral | Birds | Drapes | Couch | Rug | Table | Starfish Pillow | Blue Pillow

Here’s a closer look at the paint colors I chose for this palette:

Cool Coastal Palette | Chicago ReDesign

  1. Palladian Blue HC-144
  2. November Rain 2142-60
  3. Stone Harbor 2111-50
  4. Sea Star 2123-30
  5. Horizon 1478

What do you think? I’d love to hear your thoughts. Oh, and wish Erik and me luck on our first time traveling with a toddler (and tips or advice are much appreciated).

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Build a Room: My Own Outdoor Oasis

side deckHave you heard the phrase “The shoemaker’s son has no shoes”? Well, in my case I often feel like “the designer’s house has no design”. Let me explain… we bought our condo two years ago, and I got pregnant 6 days after we moved in. I worked full time up until I was 9 months along, and then I decided to give it a go with my own business. So on top of being a stay-at-home mom, I was also trying to launch Chicago ReDesign. Needless to say, there was never much time (or money) for decorating my own house, so many areas still remain neglected as I (very) slowly finish each room.

One of the many spaces in our condo in need of a little decorator TLC is our side deck. Although this space isn’t huge, we spend a lot of time here during the precious summer months, relaxing and entertaining friends, so it’s become a priority in my mind.

Now it’s time to get inspired and start thinking about transforming this boring deck into an outdoor room I can be proud of.  A few caveats: Because this is a condo building, I can’t do anything to the exterior walls. And as always, I’m on a budget, which means the sort-of-too-big-for-the-space table will have to stay.

Dreamboard #1

Outdoor room decorating | Chicago ReDesign

Garland Rectangular Patio Rug – Green/Sand Floral | Norcal Pottery 10.5in Blush Terra Cotta Ribbed Egg Pot | Norcal Pottery 7 3/4in Terra Cotta Deco Pot | World Market Green Battery-Operated Lanterns | Ikea HYLLIS Shelving Unit

I like the idea of bringing fresh greens into the space to play off of the cedar-color deck and the light putty gray split-face brick. I would add two Ikea shelving units (only $14.99 a piece!) against the back wall and stack them full of inexpensive, but interesting clay pots. And to fill those pots, I was thinking hardy petunias in pink and yellow, as well as the incredibly prolific mint herb. Not only is the mint fragrant, but it’s great to be able to step off onto the deck and grab some leaves for Moroccan mint tea or even mint juleps.

Dreamboard #2

Outdoor room decorating | Chicago ReDesign

World Market Carved Wood String Lights | Ikea OSTLIG Plant Pots | Mali Geometric Patio Rug | Ikea SOCKER Hanging Planter

I also like the idea of incorporating into the space a quatrefoil pattern and the color blue, both of which are favorites of mine, and both of which happen to be trending right now. The blue and white palette is accented nicely by the earthy elements of the wood string lights and dark bronze-colored clay pots. And again, I would plant petunias, this time in blue, in the hanging and clay pots.

Both boards would cost right around $200 to implement, and I really like both for different reasons. What do you think? Which dreamboard do you prefer? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

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How to Create Warmth and Richness When Decorating With Gray

After about a decade of the brown and beige design trend, gray has officially been ushered in as the go-to neutral these days. Grays are extremely versatile shades that can compliment just about any decorating style and color palette. Grays can add depth and sophistication to a room, but many people avoid using gray for fear it will make a room feel sterile and uninviting. Fear not my friends; below are some tips you can use when working with gray to create warm, rich spaces in your own home.

  • If you are worried about selecting the right gray to coordinate with your existing furnishings, try BM HC-172 Revere Pewter or BM HC-173 Edgecomb Gray. Both are very neutral “putty” shades of gray.
Decorating with Gray | Chicago ReDesignBM HC-172 Revere Pewter | Source
  • Create a balance of cool and warm tones by pairing cool grays with energizing pops of jewel tones and warm natural elements like wood, leather, and copper. Pair warm grays with shiny silver metals and cool colors for a touch of elegance and modernity.
Decorating with Gray | Chicago ReDesignSource
Decorating with Gray | Chicago ReDesignBM HC-87 Ashley Gray | Source
  • Pair a dark gray with a softer pastel shade, white furniture, and earthly elements like wood, wicker, and sisal to create a cheery and informal space.
Decorating with Gray | Chicago ReDesignBM AF-720 Sparrow | Source
  • A dark gray ceiling and dark gray walls create a dramatic and intimate effect.  To keep the dark ceiling from being oppressive, complete the look with lighter, creamy accents and flooring.
Decorating with Gray | Chicago ReDesignSource
  • When working with gray and white opt for a creamier off-white (such as BM OC-17 White Dove). Stark white can provide too much of a contrast and might come off as a bit jarring.
  • This is true for any paint color, but ALWAYS use large scale paint swatches (2′ x 2′) that can be moved around the room before settling on a gray color. Grays can affect the mood of a room, so determine how the color changes with the light and is affected by shadowing. Click here for a great tutorial on creating large size paint color samples.
  • Use a low-sheen paint on the wall – anything shinier can look metallic and unflattering.

How do you feel about gray? Are you on board with the trend or do you still prefer beiges and browns? I’d love to hear what you think!

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Decorating with a Neutral Palette

Although I love color, I’ve always been drawn to rooms with neutral or subdued palettes. There is something very calm and relaxing about a neutral space, akin I think to a winter landscape after the snow. Everything seems a little more still and quiet, which is the type of sanctuary I long for after busy days in the city. However, creating a neutral palette isn’t just about throwing a bunch of beige furniture in a white room. In order to give the room depth and warmth, and to create that sense of sanctuary, the room still needs to be visually engaging. And the key to this is texture and pattern. Mixing wood grains, varied textiles, detailed furniture, stone, shell, metallics (you get the point) keeps a neutral room from being anything but boring.

Remember this mantra – texture, texture, and more texture.  With a multitude of textures, from the shell chandelier to the rustic coffee table and distressed furnishings, this room is full of warmth and interest.

decorating with neutrals, neutral palette, texture, pattern, distressed furniture, shell, capiz{source}

Subtle colors and patterns, soft texture and interesting accents add depth to this monochromatic white-on-white palette. For a slightly creamy off-white try Benjamin Moore Cloud White 967.

decorating with neutrals, neutral palette, texture, pattern, monochromatic color scheme, white on white

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Exquisite details, metallic accents, and Lucite chairs give this room an expensive, high-end look.

decorating with neutrals, neutral palette, texture, pattern, luxe, modern, lucite

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Switch up accessories in a neutral room, like the throw, pillows, wall art, and table pieces for a new look (and new color scheme) without spending a lot of money

decorating with neutrals, neutral palette, texture, pattern, pop of color{source}

A mix of eye-catching patterns and cozy textures (am I the only one that wants to snuggle up to those cable knit pillows and throw?) keeps this gray and cream bedroom from feeling sterile and cold. Wall color is BM Spanish Olive CC-606.

decorating with neutrals, neutral palette, texture, pattern, gray and cream bedroom, BM Spanish Olive{source}

And finally, some neutral decorating inspiration of my own… a mood board with a gray, cream and gold color palette and featuring plenty of texture and pattern.

decorating with neutrals, neutral palette, texture, pattern, gray cream gold paletteBM Revere Pewter HC-172 | BM Cloud White 967 | Capiz Chandelier | Jute Rug | Pouf | Kivik Sofa | Zen Embroidered Throw Pillow | Bromley Wall Mirror | Portledge Wall Mirror | Gold Ceramic Lotus Stool

I would love to hear what your thoughts are on decorating with a neutral palette. Do you prefer lots of color? What rooms do you think a neutral palette works best in?

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