COLOUR BY NUM­BERS

What are the style se­crets be­hind adding colour to your home? We asked in­te­rior de­sign ex­pert James Tre­ble.

Homes+ (Australia) - - CONTENTS - James Tre­ble is a qual­i­fied colour con­sul­tant/in­te­rior de­signer with over 20 years’ ex­pe­ri­ence within the build­ing and de­sign in­dus­tries.

James Tre­ble’s guide to choos­ing paint colours for inside your home.

Q1 How many shades of one colour can you use to­gether?

A Us­ing one colour in dif­fer­ing shades in a space is called “monochro­matic”. The ba­sic rule is to se­lect three depths of colour, rang­ing from pale and di­luted to mid-tone and a deeper rich shade. For main walls and any fea­tures, I sug­gest us­ing lighter to mid-tones, as these make spa­ces feel larger. Keep deep tones for fur­nish­ings and re­peat the mid to light tones in smaller ways to bal­ance the space.

Q2 Should the colours in your home all work to­gether?

A It’s a clever idea to cre­ate a co­he­sive home, where all ar­eas have a seam­less flow or tran­si­tion.

This can be achieved by us­ing the same floor­ing, wall colour or fur­ni­ture style through­out the house. It makes smaller spa­ces feel larger and makes the home feel more calm and con­sis­tent. How­ever, you can still in­tro­duce ad­di­tional colours, by treat­ing this co­he­sive idea as a base pal­ette for your main ar­eas (such as your floor­ing and the main wall colour) and adding in­ter­est and vari­a­tion through fea­ture colours, ma­te­ri­als and decor, which can eas­ily be changed.

Q3 How do you choose a jump­ing-off point for colour in a room?

A Use a key el­e­ment/s in your home, such as a fea­ture art­work you love, a sofa or a rug, as your start­ing point. These pro­vide ideal ref­er­ence points for colour, and they also re­flect your per­son­al­ity. Look at these and pull out a par­tic­u­lar colour (or tex­ture or pat­tern) and use it in other ar­eas around the room or house. An ex­am­ple would be us­ing an art­work as your main cen­tre­piece, then tak­ing a colour from this art­work and in­tro­duc­ing it into cushions, a throw or a rug. Do­ing this will vis­ually tie the whole space to­gether.

Q4 What colours would you not put to­gether?

A They say blue and green should never be seen, but the right shades of each can work re­ally well. A lot of the time colour com­bi­na­tion is per­sonal pref­er­ence. I would avoid mak­ing a home too beige or too bland. It’s im­por­tant to have con­trast, adding in­ter­est and pro­vid­ing light and shade through­out. Con­trast can come in many forms, from in­tro­duc­ing a darker or lighter colour to nat­u­ral tex­tures such as tim­ber and stone or a punch of colour. They all help to add vis­ual in­ter­est and avoid the dreaded

“bland or bor­ing”.

Q5 How do you add colour to a pri­mar­ily white in­te­rior?

A This de­pends on your in­te­rior style or the look you are af­ter – and doesn’t have to mean bright, bold or in-your-face colour. It could mean

Q6 What’s your cur­rent favourite colour pair­ing?

A Right now it’s darker colours. Deep colours are moody, lux­u­ri­ous and very on-trend.

sim­ply adding muted earthy neu­tral tones, through nat­u­ral ma­te­ri­als and tex­tures such as tim­ber, wo­ven jutes or sisals and, most im­por­tantly, green­ery. I love us­ing plants inside the home to link inside and out. Green, in the form of na­ture, is a colour that can work in all in­te­ri­ors.

Q7 Are there any rules about us­ing too many colours?

A In gen­eral, the rule is three colours in one space. I use this rule of­ten, es­pe­cially when cre­at­ing ex­te­rior schemes, as a bal­ance of three dif­fer­ent colours (which can be in dif­fer­ent fin­ishes, not just paint) makes a well-bal­anced look­ing space. For in­te­ri­ors, I usu­ally sug­gest one main colour for the walls through­out to cre­ate a co­he­sive space, one tonal use of colour in fur­ni­ture, which may be a sim­i­lar tim­ber tone or all white, and then a stronger colour in small punchy ways with ac­ces­sories, art and in­te­rior styling. This also al­lows you to eas­ily and cost ef­fec­tively change the bolder colour as your tastes or the sea­sons change.

Q8 What have you found is the most pop­u­lar colour scheme?

A The most pop­u­lar colour scheme would be the neu­tral, slightly grey off-white colour pal­ette. This is so easy to live with, doesn’t go too blue – which a grey scheme can do – and blends well with mod­ern and con­tem­po­rary styling and tim­ber tones, which most Aus­tralians usu­ally have in fur­nish­ings of some style.

Q9 What do peo­ple find trick­i­est about us­ing colour in their home?

A In gen­eral, peo­ple are scared of colour. They worry they’ll get it wrong, so they play it safe, re­sult­ing in a bland in­te­rior with lit­tle con­trast that ends up be­ing bor­ing. My ad­vice to ev­ery­one is to be a lit­tle more dar­ing: do your re­search, find im­ages of rooms you like and then, in­stead of sim­ply copy­ing them, adapt them for your needs by tak­ing the ideas and colours which work for you. Al­ways do your home­work and, when you are shop­ping, take sam­ples such as paint chips, fab­ric sam­ples of your sofa or even pho­tos of your space. You’ll find most of the staff in paint and fur­ni­ture stores will be more than happy to of­fer their ad­vice to en­sure you get it right.

“It’s a good idea to get sam­ple pots and paint swatches on dif­fer­ent walls to re­ally see how they look in your home.”

Taub­mans Ori­en­tal Night Moody blues This room goes for im­pact with rich cobalt walls and ac­ces­sories in lighter shades of blue.

The jump-off

The colours in the art­work in­flu­enced the choice of cushions and cov­er­ings on the bed. Porter’s Paints Emer­ald Haymes Paint Grape Nec­tar Du­lux Ahoy

Porter’s Paints Driz­zle Haymes Paint Sun Dew Du­lux Parch­ment Pa­per Haymes Paint Soothe Du­lux Land Light Porter’s Paints Nude Haymes Paint Boul­der Grey Haymes Paint Feather Grey

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