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Nespresso boxes pair color with flavor

Inspired Sensational Color Can Be Yours!

Nespresso boxes pair color with flavor
Discovering and exploring inspiring color choices can entice us to try a new flavor. The Nespresso company has made an art form out of color choice as it affects product packaging and display placement. (And I love the coffee!)
photo: ©Cristina Acosta

Pick a color, any color, and you’ll be surprised. Because if you follow your color bliss and choose colors that attract and inspire you, the right color is closer than you think. Start randomly choosing colors that attract you and after you’ve made 50 to 100 selections, there will be a pattern to your color choices. Guaranteed. I see it with every client.

And no matter how forward-thinking or retro-minded we may be, we are still in the present moment. Which is why we need to repaint, remodel, re-brand, etc. Time is marching on and change is inevitable. Colors go in and out of fashion because pushing the changes of fashion is the flow of time and perception.

That said, can a color choice be out of context for a particular project or a particular room? Absolutely, if that project or room already has a defined color scheme. Choosing colors that integrate into an existing color plan has a different set of parameters than creating a completely new color plan.

If you want to know what you really think and feel about color, pay attention to what inspires you and look for patterns as your choices add up. Inspired, sensational color can be yours!

Is Red Really the Color of Desire?

Painting your bedroom dark red can really work. (If you love red.) Be brave and use the colors you love in your home.

Drive by most any fast-food restaurant and you’ll most likely see red regardless of your emotional state, because red is understood to be a color that stimulates the appetite. KFC, McDonald’s, Burger King, and In-n-Out are some of the national fast-food companies that use red in their marketing.

Red has such a reputation as an appetite stimulating, passion rousing color that I’ve had clients insist on putting red in a room for that reason, or insist on not using red for that reason.

This was the case for a business that wasn’t in the food industry. After putting together an office color scheme with a company CEO, I was approached  by an upset employee who was sure that the dark cranberry red color we had chosen for the conference room would exacerbate arguments and increase dissension.

I assured the employee that red was going to work beautifully in the room and stimulate conversation rather than direct it. He wasn’t that sure of my advice, but he accepted his boss’ choice. The boardroom walls became cranberry red and everyone deemed it a success.

But all reds aren’t equal. Red-oranges, blue-reds, pinks, magentas, deep reds, bright reds, dull reds, dark reds and light reds are some of the variations of red that most any national paint brand offers.

And just like the many varieties of reds, there are just as many reactions and beliefs  surrounding the color red. Passionate, powerful, stimulating, argumentative, sexual, life-giving, playful, decorative, deep, are just some of the concepts that people attach to the color red and/or feel from the color red.

Whatever you feel about the color red, if you are attracted to it, I encourage you to use red in your room. As a room color or as an accent wall color, if using red scares you, putting it on your wall is a worthwhile risk. Whether you love it or hate it, facing the color red will leave you feeling stronger.

Choosing the Right Colors for You

Choosing colors can be confusing. My color consulting clients usually have piles of paint color samples and an idea of which colors or color direction they prefer, and then say “. . . but, you just tell me which colors are best.”

Multi-colored sign saying Be You that I found while visiting a Los Angeles County, California beach town. ©Cristina Acosta
Los Angeles Beach Area Street Art Sign ©Cristina Acosta

 I won’t. At least not until you’ve done some exploration. I won’t tell you the colors I think you should have, because the first thing you need to experience when choosing colors is the freedom to choose any color that catches your attention. And…I don’t live or work in your building. Choosing colors is about you.

Color consultants have many different processes they use when advising about colors, so I’m not speaking for anyone else. When I work with clients, the first hour of the appointment is crucial so that we both see which colors they are attracted to.

Most clients choose about fifty to two-hundred colors during the initial phase of our appointment. Looking across the color samples on the table, we both get the true non-verbal reality of their color likes and dislikes.

I included the word “dislikes” because invariably, some of my clients color choices move to the “hate-it” side of the table.

Choosing colors can be a deeper process than just decorating. Surrounding yourself with colors that resonate deeply for you is emotionally satisfying.

Cristina Acosta

Residential, Commercial and Institutional Architectural Color Consultant