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Color Trends for Spring and Summer 2004

by Gail McCauley

Last year color was all about finding contentment and relaxation throughout the home using a thoughtfully considered, yet expansive palette of comfort creating hues. The commencement of 2004 recognizes continued nurturing of colors, but also offers cheerful optimism combined with obvious fortitude. Directions in color for spring and summer 2004 can be broken down into recognizable category groupings. Sunbaked shades represent earthy colors that appear to be scorched and weather beaten. The tropical assortment of colors spotlight refreshing hues that are saturated with a fruity essence. The aquatic palette offers an ethereal ambience that spotlights tranquility in appearance. Lastly, the inclusion of dynamic shades that speak to the latest in translucent and metallic color options completes the spring/summer 2004 color forecast.

Closely associated with the restful calm for which consumers are searching, the aquatic grouping of colors help to create an 'escape within the home'. As "blues" heavily dominate the 2004 color palette, this expansive pool of color offers stunning examples of cool and soothing oceanic choices. Celestial blue, light aqua, seagrass, green haze and misty jade are all examples of hues that assist with implementing a peaceful environment that can be fashioned within the confines of a rambling ranch home or the most compact of city lofts. Glassy, transparent hues are particularly reflective and fresh using this palette of colors. Using a monochromatic painted color palette, any of these reassuring tones would help to establish an environment where any homeowner would enjoy spending time after a hectic day.

For those consumers leaning towards more vibrant colors, the rapidly approaching warm weather season offers a wealth of bold color opportunities. Although the Asian aesthetic continues to remain strong, there is now a growing trend toward the energetic palette coined by the tropics. A reflection of the warming trend of color in home decor, powerfully fun colors such as Caribbean orange, bright lemon drop, wild fuchsia, lime sorbet and Tahiti pink allow the homeowner to add adventurous whimsy to any space. Jolts of tropical color may be applied with quality paint products to interior molding and trims to create that perfect splash of color to energize a dated room or breathe life onto a nondescript piece of furniture.

To create a dynamic and one of a kind fashion statement, the adventurous color aficionado may opt to incorporate a touch of shimmering flavor to a focal point wall or small powder bath. The upcoming season's vibrating, lightening shades present choices such as oyster white, fresh copper, arctic ice, silver mink and steel granite to add customized drama to any space. Consider the effect that a powder room with neutral painted wall coverings has once it has been enhanced with a shimmery, textural hue on the ceiling. Showcasing one of the many faces of this spring and summer's hottest oranges, coppery mineral tones offer a prime example of a powerfully dramatic and distinctively luminous powder room ceiling space for guests to enjoy.

Sunbaked shades present an additional theme that emphasizes the beauty of the great outdoors as part of the natural world. Washed sand, rawhide, deep slate and baked brick conjure up recognizable outdoor scenarios using subtly stylish, earthy color. Weather beaten in appearance describes these tones that are growing increasingly popular amongst decorative painters in order to create elegant special effect decorative paint finishes that are used to enhance a wide variety of design elements and surfaces. From pottery and picture frames that greet the family in the front foyer to deck furniture and window boxes that linger beside the backyard pool, these colors offer even the novice painter a refreshing alternative for enhancing a neutral shade by adding color and dimension to the surface.

Closely paralleling recent years quest for comforting hues, this years selection of palettes reinforces this theme while integrating unexpected splashes of refreshing color! From the immensely popular rich reds to alluring pinks, warm oranges to sophisticated browns and seaside blues to botanical greens; this spring and summer season offers color options for every decorating enthusiast! Coordinating the mix of colors for spring and summer 2004 could be described as not only surprising, but also as downright fun! With the onset of the warm weather months just around the corner, showcase your unique preferences and creativity by customizing various parts of the retreat that you call home with color and paint!

Gail McCauley for the
Rohm and Haas Paint Quality Institute

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