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Integrating patterns through fabrics; Create your own story...

Like can never have too much color!

Good Wednesday to you! It's true! Chocolate and the topic of it can light up the day. It can be true about color too. After all, color is really light waves and essentially enters through the eye as light. Depending on your personal taste, however, you may find that the light waves in your eyes don't particularly care for mustard yellow, for instance. The point is: lots of things light up your day and hopefully chocolate and color are two things that play a part in the lightness of your day! A few blog posts ago the science about how we see color is really amazing when you consider it. So, to refresh, our eyes see more warm color wave lengths than cool color wave lengths. Reds, oranges and warm yellow tones would be longer and thus why we see these colors more. Cool colors, blues, greens and purples, have shorter wave lengths. BUT, if a cool color is warmed using let's say, red added to blue, the wave length would be longer because of the red in the color. Moving on... Even though science tells me I see more reds than blues, I say with full truth and confidence that I prefer blue over red as a decorating color. Red is a very saturating color and when used effectively, can make for a beautiful space. For now, let us turn to how to use different fabrics in our schemes. This next bit of writing is the backdrop to creating your own story through the use of fabrics.

One of the most wonderful benefits to creating your own story through the integration of fabrics is that, essentially you ARE writing your own decorating story. Recently, a woman very close to me chose to do a refresh on her master bedroom. The room as is was was nicely done; calm, serene with lots of space in the room for larger pieces of furniture, yet it remained spacious and easy to move about. The color scheme was something she chose to coordinate with the master bathroom as well. It was rather tasteful. However, she wanted to freshen things up and in doing so, swapped out the wall paint color for a soft white in a pearl finish; something that would still live nicely with the carpet which would not be replaced. Two white chaise loungers still looked pretty and just right for the sitting area in the room. To add color two pillows in varying shades of blue now sit on the chaise loungers. Just enough color to be interesting and still calm. However, she went really bold and added a wallpaper with a huge motif in two shades of blue plus white. Lamps were replaced with deep blue pottery with a small print pattern and the bed now furnished in white bed linens hosts just one large bolster pillow in the same pattern on the wallpaper. It ended up as a really pretty room with more pattern and color to be fresh for a long time.

One of the best ways to live dangerously in the way of decorating is to integrate lots of different patterns in the same room. The trick is to blend without matching. It isn't that hard, once you gain confidence and care less about what and how someone may react to your pairings. This is hard to do in the beginning because we want other people to say nice things...and mean it. But, because decorating is so subjective, to decorate for an applause doesn't mean you end up with a look you absolutely love and it absolutely reflects your vision. This is really where confidence is the first line of defense, especially in your own home. I am honest when I say that "when I let other people tell me what they thought I should do vs what I felt I wanted to do", I came away the least excited about the results (I actually have a rug story to share someday). Today, even if I make a mistake or am not thrilled about the result of a choice I make, I try and rework it or move whatever it is to another space. If, in the end, it doesn't work, I move it out (give it away or sell it). Life is short, there isn't room to keep something that doesn't bring you the joy you are looking for (now don't start thinking this means difficult people...we are simply talking about things in your decoration). We recently purchased a fabulous piece of artwork and I just knew I'd find the right space. However, I am still looking for that space as the wall originally meant to hold it is just too small. So, I will make another few attempts to find a space; and if I don't, I will sell it. So, blending fabrics and how to do it...

To begin with, I choose a larger and more colorful pattern that has all the colors I am thinking for the space I am working on. I decide where this pattern will go: curtains, chair, bench, pillows, etc. Then I choose a secondary fabric that pulls a few colors from the first fabric to use on pillows, bed cover, chair etc. Then I choose another fabric for something smaller, like pillows for compliment the two other fabrics. Each pattern should be a different size (large motif/pattern, medium and small). Solids are great for covering something like an ottoman or a bench to pull out a specific color in the biggest fabric. At this point, you would have 4 patterns in this room. Add a special pillow to blend with other pillows or as a single and there you go, you now have 5 patterns. The rug could be an entirely new pattern; just make sure it has some of all of the colors you have selected so far. Now you have 6 patterns. Using patterned sheets adds another colorful layer. It really can be done and, tastefully at that. Again, as I have said previously, try picking up a shelter magazine with lots of examples to assure you that it can be done and look fabulous.

I hope this helps you and that you could pull out the confidence needed to give it a try.

Until next time, good on you! Jeanine

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