After last week’s post on working with tall ceilings, I started thinking that it’s not just our homes’ architecture that we sometimes have to work around. It can also be our past design choices, like living room furniture bought ten years ago that can’t be replaced just yet, or even a paint color you’re not completely in love with, but aren’t willing to change for the time being.
Red is a perfect a example. While gray walls and neutral upholstery may be all over Pinterest and design blogs, there are still lots of red rooms (and red furniture) out there that just need to be freshened up.
A couple of weeks ago, Naomi of Design Manifest did a great post on how a client’s older red sofa could be transformed just by pairing it with new accessories in different accent colors:
Throw pillows, some new accessories and maybe even painting your coffee table a new color are easy ways to get excited about your current furniture without investing the money in new upholstery.
And, what about red walls? Although I don’t have any red walls in our current house, I don’t think every home has to be gray, greige or taupe. Red can be warm, welcoming and work even if your style is far from traditional.
Mix in metallics. Black works great with red, but too many black accents can start to weigh a room down. Red and warm gold tones (like the brass table above) are perfect partners.
Dare to go bold with patterns. Red is a strong color and can handle almost anything you throw at it. Make red modern with bold patterns on the pillows, windows or floors. (I shared another example of how one of my first online clients updated a traditional dining room with a bold patterns here.)
Yes, you can layer reds. You may think contrast is always the way to go, but creating layers of saturated color can make a room feel more modern. Have an old dresser or handed-down buffet? Paint it the same deep color as your walls for an instant update.
Add unexpected accent colors in small doses. Red can be paired with all kinds of colors you may have never considered. Pink, apple green, turquoise. . . But, it’s all a matter of putting that color on the right pieces and in the right doses. The dining room above is a beautiful example. Think of how different it would look if the chairs were the same tone as the table. The green adds instant freshness.
Balance red with texture. Adding woven baskets, bamboo shades or a distressed table can all help to make a red room more relaxed and less formal.
Do you have red in your house? After searching for pictures of red rooms, I’m feeling like I might need a little around here. . .
PS—In honor of Valentine’s Day, I’m hosting a little party on the blog tomorrow, and you’re all invited :) See you then.