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Color Flow

October 8, 2012
by thenestinggame

Hi. Remember me?

I hate it when bloggers make excuses. “It’s been so long! I promise I’ll be better.” So I won’t do that. I’m here. Let’s move on.

So let’s talk about paint colors. When Taylor and I were looking at homes we both loved the houses that seemed to flow from room to room. Not that every room had to be the same color, but it was nice when the owners used varying shades of the same tones and the transitional spaces led you into the next room.

We’ve been thinking about changing up the living room. Still thinking…no actual progress has been made. But in trying to figure out the color palette, I decided to plot out the colors of our house. I saw this post by Emily Henderson, where she mapped out the colors that work for her and her hubs and decided to see what our house said about us

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Yes, that looks like a whole lotta crazy. So much for flow, huh?

Well maybe not so fast. These are the wall colors.

Okay. That’s a little better.

But I tried to pull out the similarities from room to room. Obviously gray weaves through the entire house (minus Sadie’s room) as the neutral. Pink and orange are in several rooms, as are varying shades of blue. And a color in every room can be pulled from our big Moroccan Mirror in the bedroom hallway. (Need to take a new picture of that–ugh!)

Also–it’s kind of hard to tell–but the order of the rooms is done in the way they flow from one into another. So, I tried to repeat a dominant color from one room to the next. So, orange is a main accent color in our family room and a secondary accent color in the adjacent dining room.

And then pink from the dining room to the living room.

And then turquoise from the front hall to the bedroom hall.

So I think that is very key in making your house feel like it flows. It should feel like you are in a completely different house when you go from room to room.

Finally I boiled down all the colors from the first grid and broke them out into Cool, Warm and Neutral.

What’s funny is that the 4 green/yellow/beige squares on the end don’t really look like they belong. And then I realized they are totally the colors I’ve picked out for the deck accessories! So, clearly I’m trying to make them fit in other places in the house. I’m feeling the green more and more and may try to phase it in in more spots.

Anyway, this is still a whole lotta colors. I’m not quite sure exactly what this says about anything. I wouldn’t say these are boiled down enough to be “our” colors, the way Emily did. But it sure was fun playing around with all these little virtual paint chips!

How do you handle the “color story” in your home? Do you stick to one or change it up as you go?


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8 Comments leave one →
  1. October 8, 2012 11:27 pm

    So glad to hear from you, whenever you can get here.

    As for your question: I dunno.

    I do think about flow from one room to another. In my last house, I totally screwed up the color flow thing. The downstairs was all warm, and the upstairs all cool, and it was a bit of a train wreck in the part of the second floor that you could see from the lower floor. (It had a two-story vault with a walkway and railing.) Sometimes I think that in this house, our color range is too limited. Well, the parts we’ve done deliberately. There’s a lot of different colors because of the things we haven’t fixed up yet.

    OK: Long-winded and not very helpful. I’m sure that whatever you figure out will work wonderfully. I do think you’re onto something with seeing that the yellow/greens aren’t as cohesive with the other colors. Not sure what, but something.

    • thenestinggame permalink*
      October 8, 2012 11:45 pm

      Rita, your bathroom turned out so well! I love the wall color and Edgar, of course! Congrats on Apartment Therapy!

  2. Elaine Smart permalink
    October 8, 2012 11:37 pm

    Welcome back. You have been missed.
    Would love to see pictures of the finished deck! Have you finished decorating it?

    • thenestinggame permalink*
      October 8, 2012 11:44 pm

      Still waiting on the door—but we could probably arrange a sneak peak for ya!

  3. October 9, 2012 9:57 am

    Molly, always look forward to your blog and your latest project. I am wondering how the blue in the kitchen is working for you? Blue, as noted by color psychologists, makes food less appetizing. Thus, the use of that color for the “Blue Plate Special-so people would not eat as much. Since Taylor is quite the chef, I don’t imagine he wants a bad spin on his cuisine! This can be overcome somewhat by using the complimentary color, orange. What do your think?

    • thenestinggame permalink*
      October 28, 2012 11:07 pm


      Thanks for your comment! We actually love the blue in the kitchen (which is open to the family room—all the same color). We chose it because there were blue flecks in the countertop that was already in the house. I never heard about the unappetizing factor–though it makes since as there are no real “blue” foods in nature. (Blueberries are technically purple, right?) Anyway, we chose a blue that has a LOT of gray in it so that it doesn’t translate to pure baby boy blue. And you’re right—we use a lot of orange (more of like a terracotta shade) to set it off! We actually picked our color scheme from a blue crab’s claws. Can’t go wrong with nature’s combos. :)

  4. Taylor permalink
    October 9, 2012 11:20 am

    Actually Molly, I think this makes a lot of sense of our color flow. If you go back to the chart at the top of the page, I think it’s a little easier to see the flow. The rooms in this chart are all next to each other, so that you can see the common colors as you go from the kitchen/family room to the dining room , from the dining room to the living room, and so on. The only exception is that the bedrooms all lead back into the bedroom hall, however.

    Truth be told the Moroccan Mirror is the key to our houses’ family of colors. Not sure how that happened. Probably because it’s a piece that’s very hard to ignore. (And maybe I shouldn’t bring this up, but the Crab Portrait was pretty influential too.)

  5. October 9, 2012 5:43 pm

    That’s a good question. After reading this I thought about our house and realize that I definitely haven’t done the ‘take one color from one room and carry it into the next room’ plan. Our color story is mix of neutrals with splashes of bold here and there. And I found fabulous hot pink curtains that remind me of your dining room curtains (although not the same) and I am excited to add that splash of bold to the house soon.

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