Posts Tagged ‘Great Colors’

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Touching Base

July 22, 2016

Once again, it has been a while since I posted on my blog. However, I recently posted a lengthy newsletter that includes a recent interior design project that I especially enjoyed working on since it was new construction for some color clients I’ve had for over a decade. Now that they both retired and all of their children are grown, they down-sized into a lovely town home in a private development in Baton Rouge. The Living Room shown below opens into both the Dining Area and Kitchen. To see more photos, check out my latest Living Well Newsletter. This project is towards the end.

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It’s now been a couple of years since we’ve been using the new PPG Paints products and I can’t tell you how pleased with the feedback I’m getting. Both the Pure Performance and Manor Hall are premium products. The Pure Performance is VOC-free and covers exceptionally well. However, I’m thrilled to report that we’re now reformulating our really saturated Bright and Magical Gem colors into the Manor Hall product for these usually hard to cover colors. The “Hot Pink!” for instance, almost covers in one coat (in the old Lifemaster, it took 3-4 coats!). Now, we’re talking two coats, tops!

I’m also creating new colors almost weekly and there are some great ones so be sure to check the drop down color lists and if there are colors you don’t recognize that aren’t in your sets, please don’t hesitate to email me to find out more about them. Also, I usually post photos of the samples on my Facebook page. Two new ones you might like are full spectrum versions of Farrow & Ball colors I was asked to make: “Middleton Pink” (we kept the same name for now) and our “Verdant” is their discontinued “Chappell Green”. Both photos of the same sample below show how much the color shifts from green to blue.

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The same “Verdant” sample above and below shifts with the light.

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The samples below are of two new colors. The top one is “Kelly Green” and the bottom two are the same exact color sample (“Castle Piano Rm Green”) but with different lighting. These colors were created for artist Hunt Slonem’s 102,000 sq.ft. Castle in Scranton.

New Greens

Although these colors were initially created for special clients, these paint colors may be ordered by anyone and we’re having one of our “Blog Sales” so be sure to input the word “blog” in the discount box at checkout when you order online.  While you’re there, check out the fabrics and wallpaper that can now be ordered online. There are always discounts, but you need to email me with the quantity so I can give you the secret discount code!

I hope you’re having a swell (not sweltering) Summer!

smEllensig

 

 

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Miss me? It’s been far too long!

December 2, 2015

I am so sorry to have not posted anything in months. It hasn’t been for lack of any news, I’ve just been busy juggling design projects and working on formulas for all 100 stock colors into the new PPG products.

I did just manage to post a newsletter today featuring Hunt Slonem’s new 30,000 square foot studio in Brooklyn, thanks to Marc Charbonnet’s photos and Jacqueline Terrebonne’s video interview for Architectural Digest.

If you need a little color therapy, check it out:

Living Well Newsletter

By the beginning of 2016 PPG will be changing out the tinting system for the Lifemaster, Diamond 350 and Fortis products to the VOC-free PPG tinting system, so if you have used these products in the past and need any additional paint, now is the time to order. To take the sting out, these products (if available–depending on your local store’s stock), I am offering a 20% discount. Just input “discontinued LM” into the discount box at checkout for Lifemaster and “discontinued D350” for Diamond 350 (formerly labeled Dulux Ultra). To order online, visit: http://www.store.ellenkennon.com.

I’m anxiously awaiting more photos from Marc Charbonnet of his latest project in Old Brookeville, NY that I’ll be featuring in my next newsletter. He is such a talent and his new “Fierce Whimsey” style is quite colorful!

This weekend, Saint Francisville puts on it’s annual Christmas in the Country weekend, complete with a home tour to benefit the Friends of the Library. Two of my projects, Harmony House and Melody House are on the tour so I’ll be there showing them off and serving Bellinis! If you’re in the area, get a ticket and come by and see me! For tickets: Christmas in the Country Home Tour Tickets

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“Perfect Place in Nature” Palettes, the First of Many

February 12, 2013

When I was living in New York, I found the energy of the city so stimulating that in order to fall asleep at night, I would listen to calming, self-hypnosis tapes as I would drift off. The tapes always began by having me visualize my “perfect place in nature”, so I’d visualize myself lying in a hammock looking up at tall trees, high above a babbling creek. One day, a friend invited me to a lecture given by “Sun Bear”, an Indian chief and author of several books. His talk was about the importance of nature and how we were meant to live in harmony with nature.

Several days later, some of the city’s underground steam heat pipes burst up through the sidewalks spewing boiling water and asbestos up into the air just blocks from my apartment. I took this as “a sign” and left the city soon after, returning to my native state of Louisiana.

Fond memories of Louisiana’s beautiful West Feliciana Parish and its charming town of St. Francisville beckoned. I called the first realtor listed in its yellow pages and described the type of property I was looking for: Several acres with so many trees that I would have very little yard to mow, so private that I could see company coming before they could see me, and if it were at all possible, a babbling creek.

Later that day, the realtor showed me property with all of those features. It was perfect. Several weeks later, as my home was being built, I was lying in a hammock looking up at the 100′ tall trees supporting it, about 25 feet above Alexander Creek, and it hit me! Creative visualization really does work, even unintentionally! If such things as serenity are important to you, think of the way you feel in your “perfect place in nature”.

Your home should be emotionally comforting. If it doesn’t lift your spirits at the end of a hectic day, it’s not living up to its obligations as a place of refuge and retreat. According to the ancient Chinese art of Feng Shui (which means wind and water), the design of your interior spaces should echo nature, balancing the five elements of earth, water, fire, metal and wood, with earth being the central element. These elements contain all matter and together create “chi”, the vital energy that connects man to earth and beyond. When all of these elements combine in a space, as they do in nature, they create a greater whole that becomes the space’s aura. Their interaction promotes a direct connection between your own breath of life and the spaces you occupy.

Based on this theory, I  created my line of Full Spectrum Paints and will be posting “Perfect Place in Nature” palettes to help inspire you to create your own sanctuary. Today, I’ll start with my own palette (Buttercream, Ashen Green, Magnolia, Azure, Alexandra Blue & Light Terracotta).

The main living area wall color “Buttercream” was chosen because this soft, creamy yellow creates an atmosphere that promotes hopefulness and communication, stimulates creativity and the intellect. It has been featured in more than one issue of House Beautiful Magazine and two of their books. In the House Beautiful iPad App, Buttercream is one of only two colors that is touted as both “calming & happy”!

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“Buttercream” walls & ceilings with “Ashen Green” trim. Photo by the late Sandy Johnson.

I used “Ashen Green” trim on all millwork since my small cabin is in the woods surrounded by lots of lush greenery. Although this is a gray-green with blue undertones, it also works well with the browner, mossy greens, which are in both of my sofas. The Master Bedroom is painted “Magnolia” and because it is small and there are so many windows and doors, I painted the trim in this room the same color. Although Magnolia is a dark color, it embraces the coziness of the small room and connects you to the outdoors–like being on a porch! Also, the color green is THE most healing color and like all cool colors, it is very soothing and restful.

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“Magnolia” used on walls, ceiling, trim and even the fan blades! Photo by Kerri McCaffety.

The Guest Room is painted “Azure”, a sunny pale sky blue that studies have shown to induce sleep and reduce inflammation–known as the “Florence Nightingale” color.

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Walls & ceilings are “Azure” with “Ashen Green” used on trim and chest. Dutch beds on each side are upholstered in blue cotton fabric. Photo by the late Sandy Johnson.

You’ll note from the photos that all walls and ceilings are painted the same color which softens the space and cloaks it in color. I especially do this for cathedral ceilings and low-ceiling rooms with no crown molding because it visually raises the ceiling height. My daughter Alexandra’s room is painted “Alexandra Blue”, the color of the sky at twilight. This color is so relaxing, I often hang out in her room when she’s away at school. The periwinkle undertone makes the color so misty, you want to put your hand out to touch the walls as they seem cloud like.

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“Alexandra Blue” walls & ceiling, “Ashen Green” trim. Hallway is also “Ashen Green” with “Buttercream” in great room beyond.

The Master Bathroom was originally painted “Light Terracotta” which is both cheerful and flattering to skin tones. The Euro Guest Bath walls are handmade tiles in the same color with a “Mykonos Blue” ceiling. I had artist Sally Conklin paint over the Master Bath walls and ceiling telling her “I want to feel like I am outdoors in a Monet painting”, so she came through in a big way incorporating the original color.

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Eurobath has custom-made tiles to match our “Light Terracotta” color. Ceiling is “Mykonos Blue”. Tiles by artist Mary Kay Davis & photo by Kerri McCaffety.

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Master Bath walls painted over “Light Terracotta” by artist Sally Conklin, owner of Circa 1857 in Baton Rouge. Photo by Kerri McCaffety.

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Left to Right: Ashen Green, Buttercream, Azure, Magnolia, Alexandra Blue & Light Terracotta Full Spectrum Paints

If you’d like samples of these colors, we have many different types, including free hand-painted samples that can be ordered at our online store on our website, ellenkennon.com.

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Chartreuse, Spice and All Things Nice!

May 29, 2012

I’m thrilled to report that Interior Designer Barry Johnson (of “Barry’s Babylon” color fame) was quoted in the June House Beautiful Magazine, naming our “Chartreuse” as his favorite healing color in the article where designers shared their favorite “life-changing colors” (color #5). Here’s Barry’s quote in HB:

“This color is about birth, growth and nature. It’s the color of new leaves. Chartreuse can be very acid but this is more of a soft yellow-green, Easy to work with. I see it in a Master Bedroom with creamy linens and a touch of coral. It would bring in some life.”

I created my full spectrum version of Akzo Nobel’s “Color of the Year” for 2007 and named it “Chartreuse” because it is the perfect balance between yellow and green. It is actually more traditional than the name suggests and I’ve used it recently on a couple of projects down here to brighten up spaces that had lots of dark wood (floors, beams, etc.).

I recently recommended it to Courtenay Dunk, author of the wildly popular SpiceLines.com Blog, when she sent me this photo of her office, saying that she was having trouble selecting a new wall color because all the samples she tried tended to have a greenish cast. In addition to her divine red & white chaise longue and rug, the only other major color in the space was her turquoise desk chair.

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Courtney’s “before” photo of her office.

As soon as she said “turquoise”, Chartreuse immediately came to mind. I also figured if the light in the room tended towards green, why not enhance it and go with a green.

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All photos are courtesy of Courtenay Dunk, SpiceLines.com.

The turquoise in the recesses of her bookshelves needed some special attention since the shadows affected how the colors we tried (Turquoise, Tiffany Turquoise and Eco Hues’ Peacock Blue) looked. We ended up going with 75% of the Peacock Blue formula, which turned out to be a gorgeous color and perfect with the Chartreuse.

When I first heard from Courtenay, I was immediately intrigued by her website, SpiceLines.com, in her email signature, so I visited it to discover a treasure trove of information about spices, cooking, exotic places and more! Courtenay describes herself as “obsessive cook, style fanatic, avid traveler, reluctant writer, food photographer when the light is right”, and as you can see by her photos, she’s quite the talented photographer!

When we finally talked over the phone, I asked her more about her office. She explained that this is where she writes her spice blog and her grandmother’s chaise longue is where she has tea most afternoons (and sometimes a nap). Books on the shelves are about spices, herbs and cooking. Objects have been collected on her travels.

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All photos courtesy of Courtenay Dunk of SpiceLines.com

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On top of the Tibetan chests there are jars of rare Indian peppercorns Courtenay picked up in Paris. “This is ‘le sniffing bar,’ where I try to keep my sense of smell honed by inhaling the scent of different spices everyday. Right now I’m trying to distinguish between varieties of peppercorns grown in different regions without looking at the labels.” 

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The Buddhist Lohan is a beneficent figure whose presence bestows good fortune. 

Courtenay’s blog is far more than an interesting read. She also helped a coffee grower she met in Veracruz who was about to go out of business, turn his business around! You can read about it in her post, “The Butterfly Effect“.

Here’s what she says about her new Chartreuse office:

“I love your Chartreuse so much that I haven’t hung a single picture on the walls. It’s soft and lively at the same time.  When I’m working in my office, I feel as if I’m bathed in a gorgeous light that relaxes and recharges the spirit.  The modified Tiffany blue is like a little glimpse of the Caribbean.  It’s a more electric hue which really makes the inside of the bookcases pop.  The two colors are fantastic together, especially with the red in the upholstery and the Moroccan rug.”

If you’d like a hand-painted sample of Chartreuse, email me at ellen@ellenkennon.com with your address and we’ll get one right out to you!

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Jon Vaccari’s “JV Cloud White” Gets Around!

April 19, 2012

In my May 19, 2010 blog post “Many Shades of White“, I posted photos of Jon Vaccari’s fabulous New Orleans showroom where everything is painted this dreamy white created especially for him. Almost two years later, this color has made its way from Los Angeles to Miami to New York and back again to New Orleans.

I used it as the main color in Rob and Veronica Wasserman‘s Spanish-style home in Los Angeles and jewelry designer Isabella Holguin’s Miami apartment and most recently, designer/antiques dealer Karina Gentinetta used it in Desegno Karina Gentinetta, her new showroom located on the 1stdibs floor in the New York Design Center at 200 Lexington Avenue in Manhattan. Karina has been getting quite a bit of press lately, starting with a fascinating article in the New York Times (“A New Cottage in New Orleans with Katrina Patina”, a must read for true inspiration!) and most recently, she was featured on 1stDibs.com in their “Saturday Shopping with Karina Gentinetta“.

Karina in her new showroom, Disegno Karina Gentinetta

Karina’s home is also featured in this month’s issue of Southern Living Magazine and is also featured in Kerri McCaffety‘s gorgeous new book, New Orleans New Elegance, which is coming out next month.

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Cover Photo of Jon Vaccari’s Dining Room painted in our “JV Cloud” White!

I can’t wait to meet Karina in person at a booksigning party for Kerri and her new book which will be held in Jon’s St. Charles Avenue showroom. His living quarters, which are also featured in the book, are upstairs from the showroom where most everything is painted in our “JV Cloud White”. It promises to be a great party reconnecting with many old friends like Jon, Kerri, Dean Coe and Mimi Read (who is quoted in the book and has generously included me in several of her articles for House Beautiful).

Also, Karina is designing a new restaurant to open next month in New Orleans’ Warehouse District (1016 Annunciation) which promises to be divine! I say “divine” because not only is Karina designing it, but the team opening it includes the chef from Clancy’s and the general manager of  Tommy’s Cuisine. I can’t wait to go enjoy what promises to be fabulous food in a divine atmosphere where the walls and millwork will be painted “JV Cloud White”!  I see many more trips to New Orleans in my future!

Speaking of New Orleans and on a personal note, my daughter Alex attends Loyola University majoring in theatre, so I love any excuse to go visit. She plans to spend the summer here in St. Francisville working on four plays with the St. Francisville Transitory Theatre, where she’s been a member since she was 12. Mom that I am, I am trying to help them raise money for this new venture. If you’re so inclined (and especially if you’re a local), here’s the link:

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/91005905/summer-of-theatre-2012

Thanks so much and have a wonderful Spring day!

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Bringing the Outdoors In

March 27, 2012

I just love it when I get happy emails and photos from paint customers! I especially love it when they take my advice and see for themselves why what I suggest works. Over twenty years ago, when I was building my own home, I had already decided to paint all of the trim in my home “Ashen Green”, but it wasn’t until the “Ashen Green” was painted over the white primer on my window and French door trim, that I realized how it pulls your eye out into the view. In sunrooms or rooms with lots of windows, it can give you the feeling of being outside on a porch.

Natasha Nyberg, the client I wrote about in my October 25, 2011 post who won the Apartment Therapy contest for her room painted in our “Caribe”, emailed me recently asking to suggest a color for her sunroom (pictured below). I suggested pretty much any of the greens from our Nature’s Palette and Natasha, who lives in a cold climate and is drawn to warm colors, chose our “Peridot”.

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Although her white sunroom certainly looks pretty, here’s what our “Peridot” on both walls and trim did for the space:

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“I am SO HAPPY with how it turned out. The green is perfect. I really couldn’t be happier. It’s everybody’s favorite room in the house now. We never used to go back there, and now we’re always spending time in there–and the only things I had to buy were the paint and some of the plants!” 

– Natasha Nyberg

I especially like the way her newly painted “Pumpkin Spice” kitchen glows through the interior window. The Peridot reminds me of the Spring greenery outside my window right now. There’s just no other color like it for rejuvenation. For more on about the properties of the color green and to see another example of painting everything green in a small room to expand the space, read our February 14, 2012 post. For more photos from happy paint customers, check out our Facebook page.

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2012 Color of the Year and Color Trend Report!

September 20, 2011

I just heard from Kate Smith (Sensational Color) and Barbara Richardson (Director of Color Marketing for Akzo Nobel), two of the country’s top color consultants who are starting to report back on the colors to look for in 2012. Kate Smith, who just returned from the Color Marketing Group summit meeting where they selected their color predictions for 2012, posted some tidbits on her Facebook page. Here’s a sneak peek of the CMG World Palette which I must say, is quite similar to Akzo Nobel’s color palette!

Colors Selected for 2012 by Color Marketing Group

It’s interesting that a red was chosen as the European color of the year by the CMG and a similar red (as it turns out, a dead ringer for our “Mykonos Red“!) was chosen as the color of the year by the Akzo Nobel international color team. A deep purple was chosen by CMG as the North American color for 2012, a deep teal (our “Albania Teal”?) for Latin America.

Latin American Color of the Year for 2012

LOVE the teal, but I have to say, I can’t imagine the Asian choice for 2012 as a wall color:

Asia's Color for 2012

The international team at Akzo Nobel, the manufacturer of our paints and now the world’s largest paint and coatings manufacturer, has selected “possibilities” as the dominant trend for 2012 “that builds upon last year’s “appreciation, but also offers the exhilarating and inspirational idea that new options are waiting to be uncovered inside all those things we have reclaimed and come to appreciate”. Now it’s available and downloadable as a PDF: Colour Futures Book

Colour Futures 2012 Red is the exact color (Tea Dance) we created a full spectrum version of in 2008 and re-named "Mykonos Red"!

"Mykonos Red" accent wall with "Powdered Pebbles" in this Barbara Jacobs' project.

This cheerful red embodies the “take charge optimism” spirit of the entire palette which includes other full bodied hues, tender hushed pastels, chic neutrals and edgy brights. I saw many of our colors in their palette, including “Juliet’s Potion” which was Barbara’s choice for our Designer Palette back in 2008 (she’s always ahead of the game!). Here’s what she said in our Winter 2008 Living Well Newsletter that debuted the color: “a very strong and bright green with a yellow cast… a very incredible, electric green with a twist. I love the accent nature of it… and I love to use it in small areas… like alcoves… I love combining it with charcoal, brown, violet, cool blues and of course white.” One of her favorite combinations is to combine it with ICI’s [now Akzo] “Windsor’s Purple, a deep, rich regal purple.”

There’s so much to report, but I’ll save more for later! In the meantime, be sure to download your own copy of the Colour Futures Book. It’s not only very informative, but great eye candy!

www.ellenkennon.com