[ this month's blog... ]

6 simple steps to the perfect color palette
diy • amazingly gentle eye make-up remover
boldly beautiful lighting by bocci

[ designer insights ]

6 simple steps to the perfect color palette


When it comes to designing your own space, pretty much everyone says the same thing..."I just don't know where to start!" 

The truth is that a room can be inspired by pretty much anything.  It could be a piece of art or your favorite arm chair.  Even a car or necklace.

But I find the easiest place to start is with color!  I'm going to walk you through 6 simple steps to picking your perfect color palette.

Write down your choices for each step.  If you start to feel overwhelmed, don't worry, step 5 will give you visual clarity!


1|  neutrals.   I like to start by choosing my base neutrals because it's one of easiest questions to answer.  Do you prefer warm, earthy, natural tones like brown, tan and cream?  How about calm, grounding greys? (my personal fave)  Or keep it simple with clean, crisp white.  You can even go beautifully dramatic with black.  (never be afraid to go bold!)


2|  tone.  Now let's lay down the mood of the room.  By tone I mean the overall lightness or darkness of the space.

If you want an uplifting, breezy room, choose a light and bright palette.  For a calm, cozy and casual feel go with a mid-tone range.  If you want a sultry, inviting richness, choose mostly dark colors. 

note on contrast :  adding contrast will create a more formal, sophisticated feel.  Black and white is the extreme example, but the same goes for color.  Keeping similar tones will feel more casual.  {like pairing light grey with light green}


3|  happy color.  Let's choose your happy color!  You know there's a hue that you just keep coming back to. 

This color makes you feel amazing!  The room is simply begging for it.  Listen to your's giving you the answer right now.

Your happy color is going to be the star in your room!


4|  mix & match.  Here's where it gets fun and you can really determine the personality of your space.  You already know your neutral color range, how light or dark the room will be, if you need to add contrast, and your dominant color which makes you feel giddy inside.

First let's choose how many more colors to add.  If you want a sophisticated, modern or elegant feel, stick with just your happy color and maybe one more.  If you want to lighten the mood, add 2 colors.  The more colors, the more fun and lively your space will be.

Now let's choose which colors to add.  Adding colors from the same family or temperature will be more subdued.  {think blues with greens or combining multiple shades of coral}

Pairing contrasting colors that are opposite each other in temperature will create more energy.  {blue with orange, or violet with yellow} 

5|  color swatches.  Let's take a little field trip!  It's time to have some actual color in front of you so you can hone in on your ideal palette. 

Go to the paint store where you plan on buying your paint and grab a BUNCH of color swatches.  Don't worry, they're used to this!

Use your answers from steps 1 - 4 to choose a wide range of neutrals and colors from your list.  Go lighter and darker than you think you need.  Remember...neutrals, tone, contrast, colors. 

DON'T EVEN TRY to make near final decisions in the store...that's a nightmare waiting to happen!

The goal is to have a lot of flexibility to work with at home where you can see the swatches in the correct lighting.

Again, using your answers from steps 1 - 4, and preferably sitting in the room you're designing, start to layout a palette of 4-6 swatches that feels really good to you. 

This will take some effort and you'll change your mind a million times, but trust me, you're almost there!


6|  proportion.  Congratulations!  You've chosen your perfect color palette!  You have just one more step before you can apply those gorgeous colors to your design choices.

It's time to decide which category each swatch of your color palette falls into.  You'll have to use your imagination to visualize each scenario, but no worries, I have faith in you!


•  base•  this is the backdrop for your room.  It's the color you paint your walls.  Remember, white is a color, so one of your neutrals may very well fill this slot if you're going for more sophistication.

•  dominant•  these are colors that make an impact, but don't take over the room.  They can be your sofa, area rug, drapes or an accent wall (but not all of the above). 

•  supporting•  you'll find these colors mostly in things like furniture.  They support the other colors but aren't the stars of the show.  A metal coffee table, wood headboard, or neutral fabric are good examples.

•  accent•  your accent colors are what bring the room to life.  Throw pillows, accessories, art and other small details fall into this category.  You can definitely have more than one accent color!  Just make sure you use them in a proportion that makes them feel special in the space.  (hint : black or white make beautiful accents)


Hey Lovely!  You did it!  Now you have your perfect color palette and a plan to go with it. 

One more piece of advise!  Take those paint swatches with you everywhere you go so that you can easily make shopping decisions.  You never know when you might find the perfect sofa!



[ healthy haven ]

amazingly gentle eye make-up remover

You know how price stickers from the store are practically impossible to get off, even with soap and water?  Well, I use my old, store-bought, eye make-up remover to easily remove sticker scum!  That's how harsh and chemical laden these products are!



But on my mission to detoxify my beauty products, I came across the perfect solution.  A gentle, easy to make and effective DIY eye make-up remover.

2 TBLOrganic Jojoba Oil

1 TBLWitch Hazel(alcohol free)

1 TBLFiltered water

The oil separates, so shake it well with each use.  Leave it on your lids and lashes for a minute or two for less rubbing.  I've also found that the older the mixture gets, the better it works because the oil is more dispersed. 

It's so gentle I can use it with my contacts in!  Just rinse with water when your done.  Enjoy!


[ favorite finds ]

boldly beautiful lighting

I'm in LOVE with the 28 Cluster by Bocci.  It's beautifully bold glass spheres can be clustered in any number of configurations.  Add color and you have major wow factor! 

Get this and more lighting ideas on my Pinterest!  {click here}