Too many of us spend our lives in a sea of grey and white, when we could be living so much more vibrantly in rich, dynamic colour, putting our own individual stamps on our surroundings.
“It can be boring and predictable, living without colour,” says Andrea Lucena-Orr, Dulux’s colour expert. “It’s important to have your own individual colour palette for interiors that reflect your personality and enrich your life.
“Particularly with apartments, paint can really transform a room, and even change the perception of space. Vertical stripes of colour, for example, can make a low ceiling taller while horizontal strips can make a small area look wider. And you have to remember – it’s paint. So if you want, it can be changed quite easily!”
To try to encourage people to be more daring with their use of colour, Dulux constantly create images of rooms, and even redecorate existing rooms (see images above), to show what a startling effect colour can have.
Interior designer and colour specialist Camilla Molders says many of us certainly need to be pushed to move away from neutral colour schemes enlivened only by brightly-coloured cushion covers and vases.
“People generally do need to be a little more daring,” she says. “They tend to be very conservative but I’d always encourage them to play with colour and texture and patterns to find something that works well with their own space, and that they like to live with.”
This winter, the colours in fashion tend to be deep and decadent hues, designed to add warmth for the colder months. These include moody browns, purples, violets, greys and dusty pinks, offset with metallic tones.
Artist Geoffrey Carran designed the room featured above left (subs: the purple one) drawing inspiration from the deco, Baroque and Renaissance periods, with a modern twist. He used Dulux’s Romantic Spirits range with dark blue-green Anchorman and Mundi for the main wall, contrasting them with Spearmint Ice for the skirting boards.
“Paint can be so dynamic when used to change the space you live in,” he says. “People like to change the atmosphere with the seasons. They can pile on some luscious, textured textiles with a blend of patterns to escape from the bleak weather outside.”
With many open-plan apartments, residents tend to like to paint areas in similar colours throughout to create a flow of space and colour, but then pick out certain features, or walls, to add more contrast.
“That might be a study nook in a living room, or a dining area in the kitchen,” says Andrea Lucena-Orr, who’s tipping serene greens as the colours to look for as we head into spring, with the colours leading into the living area (above right) part of the Precious Elementals range moving from the pale grey Ohai Half and dark grey Pipe Clay to the mossy green Hammock.
“It can make that space feel differently instantly, and add a real point of interest that can be inviting and warm, and make people feel that it’s really their individual home.”