Tuesday, January 25, 2011

What colour should I paint my entrance?

 When I am choosing colours for a specific space I usually have a set of  very loose guidelines that I consider  when making decisions. These guidelines are not hard and fast rules, rather they have been formed through various experiences and observations over the years.  If I were choosing a colour for an entrance (porch or foyer) here are some of the things I would consider :

The purpose of the space
A doorway serves as a transition from one state of existence to another and this transition can be marked in various ways.  One of the most common strategies is to use colour to reflect your invitation to enter your home. People often  choose a welcoming colour (red, yellow,  green etc. )  or a more stabilizing  colour (brown, black, gray) for their entry door.

  When the door is opened that colour is brought  inside.  If it is a strong colour, I consider it when I am choosing the colour for the interior walls of the porch/foyer. I also like the inside of the door  to serve the same as it does when entering; therefore, I often suggest   painting the inside of the entrance door the same colour as the outside.  This creates a colour unit and adds an accent to the room. This look works exceptionally well when there isn't a lot of other distraction in the decor as the green doors below show. In these rooms the painted doors serve as focal points.

Feldman Architecture, Inc.

House to Home  

I just love that lime green door with the black niche,  but do I ever want to hang a more vibrant, larger scale painting on the dark wall. 

Even though there's patterned wallpaper in the entry below, the strength and size of the door make it a dominant feature  in the room.  The black railing and art work connects the eye to the door to create visual flow.   Entrances are an excellent place to use wallpaper to achieve the colour you want and to inject texture/pattern into the space. I know that many people have a hard time warming up to  wallpaper, but it does have its purposes.

An entrance  is a transition space into the rest of the house  or another way to think about it is that it is the beginning of a colour journey. Not much time is spent there. For that reason I think it provides a safe area to be adventurous with colour.  How adventurous I get depends on the amount of light entering the space.   When choosing colours I will often look at any interesting colours on the outside of the house-  shrubs, flowers, accessories -  that might suggest a colour to bring inside.  I also like to use "nature colours" ( toned greens, blues) in entrances because they carry the outside in.

the lennoxx

Nicole Sassaman 

I like the repetition of greenery from outside to inside and the inclusion of this chest with multiple drawers would be great for storage... but would you ever find what you placed  there?

Splashes of nature or nature inspired motifs also add to the welcoming feeling in an entrance especially when they are backed by a neutral colour.

The goal  when choosing a colour scheme for your home is to create a continuous flow from  room to room, with each space complementing  the other.  I like the journey from entry into the rest of the house to be a progression from a  little darker/brighter colour into lightness. You'll want the room to have impact and make a statement. After all, this is where your guests will get a preview of the rest of your home. At the same time the entrance  serves as the connector to the rest of the house. When this transition is obvious  without a door to close the area off, my solution is usually  to choose a neutral gray/taupe that sets a sophisticated tone but doesn't cause you difficulty when running it into the next colour. See the perfect example below.  Not so sure about that yellow chandelier thought!

Orientation factors 
I am a firm believer in  considering the  type of light you have entering a space and choosing colours to "correct" the light.   I'm most concerned with north light because it is  cooler and will need to be warmed up with the right colour selection- yellows, rusts, oranges, reds or warm neutrals etc. 

Did you notice that the warmest colour was on the ceiling?  It makes the whole room glow.  

I can't imagine a warmer room.  I'm not a fond lover of orange /rust on walls but it really works in this space. 

What should you do if you have your heart set on a cool colour in  your north facing entrance?   I would say go ahead- I did! I just made sure I had a warm colour on the doors and suitable accessories to warm up the space.  There's always a way in decorating.

Art as Pop traditional entry
This overall cool entry is warmed up by the use of two beautiful art works. The yellow is like a beacon of warmth considering it is a cooler yellow.Did you notice the topiary tree used to bring the outside in and how it plays visually with the foliage outside the window?

If your  space faces south it will get warmer light and cooler colours will help to tone down the warmth. Personally I don't think a space can appear too warm especially in northern climates.  In east or west orientations you have a wide range of colour choices.

How does your entrance look these days? 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Join in the conversation

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...