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Just Add Orange!

Flickr user Robertspeg sent me a lovely little note a few days ago that I’d like to share with you since it gave me a few thoughts on orange that I’ll mention below. She begins, “I loved your orange post today. Orange is a color I never thought I would use in decorating. Then a couple of years ago, I found I really loved it with pink. Now I use it all the time.”


Peggy is right, orange doesn’t always “click” with everyone at first, at least until they spot it mingled with colors they do love. Eureka! A feeling of surprise sets in, orange suddenly becomes your new best friend. Peggy adds that for her, there was a certain something that she had to do to make orange click in her apartment, “I painted the walls white and now I find I use orange, blue and pink constantly. I never thought I would use such a strange color combination.” And it works, as you can clearly see from Peggy’s photos above.

Orange looks great with pink, also with blue (remember this mood board from Starlee Matz?), and of course, green and cocoa brown, too. They all work nicely together in nature, which is where a lot of designers draw their inspiration, so of course they’ll work indoors, too.

Consider the colors of the desert, the coast, a sunset, or those in your flower garden. When I see color combinations in nature that interest me, I photograph it and save for future reference, as these often inspire my own work. Even if you don’t consider yourself a shutterbug, purchase a digital camera and carry it with you at all times. Just the other day, I saw the most beautiful whitetail and I asked my husband to photograph it (I wasn’t patient enough to chase it as he was!) because it was so pretty – the gorgeous blue body combined with silvery gray wings with cocoa accents. It made me think of a room where the key color is blue, accented with gray and of course, some cocoa and silver.

Artists have looked to nature for inspiration over the centuries, so when decorating your home, look to color combinations outdoors as your guide and let them ignite your creative spark. With every photo I take, I’m stopping to “smell the roses” and it feels so good. Not only am I looking for terrific color combinations, but in the process I discover beautiful little creatures, flowers, plants, all that I may have missed otherwise.

Maybe this weekend, you can carry your camera with you and snap some photos of terrific color combinations in nature? It’s a fun study and will most definitely fire up your imagination. You’ll be surprised to see what you find. :)

(images from robertspeg)

Posted by decor8 in Arts + Crafts, Color Inspiration, inspiration, walls on June 29, 2007

Your comments...

  1. Alana in Canada commented
    June 30th, 2007 at 6:33am

    Inspired this morning by this post–and the incredible blog–I went out this afternoon and bought a fuzzy orange blanket for my sage green sofa. Somehow a small blue pillow got mixed in–and I gasped. The pillow could be bigger–but the colour scheme is just right. Thanks so much! (I’d post a photo, but I still use film) :).

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  2. vineeta commented
    June 30th, 2007 at 1:21pm

    my digicam goes everywhere with me :) my flickr is just full of my pics- taken here there everywhere. infact don’t know if its correct blog etiquette to post a link here(considering you haven’t asked for it). if its not, i apologise & i will perfectly understand if u don’t feature this comment. but im really keen to share the pics with you :) http://www.flickr.com/photos/8742949@N08/

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  3. simply olive commented
    July 2nd, 2007 at 3:36pm

    love the orange theme that’s been going on with your blog lately! orange is one of my favorite accent colors — it can make an otherwise monochromatic room pop. love it w/ beiges, browns, grays…

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