House Tours: Bright & Colorful Condo
When the owner of this condo moved in, she loved the modern, open plan, but the rest felt lifeless. Out went the dull, subdued color, and in came saturated color, striking patterns, and streamlined furnishings for a sophisticated look with interesting details. The living room gets a warm, inviting vibe by using natural fabrics such as wool, linen, and cashmere.
Wanting bright colors that would make her guests smile when they walked in the room, the homeowner selected bright yellow as her main color and aqua blue and pink as accent colors.
When using strong colors, an accent wall goes a long way. Here, bicycle yellow makes a statement in the colorful living room. To ground and stabilize the use of bright colors, white was used on remaining walls and surfaces, such as the sofa and the dining room, kitchen, and coffee tables. It keeps occupants from feeling claustrophobic.
By shopping at consignment and thrift stores, the homeowner found affordable furniture with bold, simple lines. She then lavished them in updated, graphic decorator fabric for visual punch. Here, dining room chairs were covered in a pink-and-white houndstooth pattern as well as a lively pastel striped print. The solid walls and window treatments in the room balance the dynamic patterns.
Retaining the kitchen's original peninsula allowed its vertical-grain oak tone to warm the living spaces. Built-in storage, such as the island's shelves, can be a blessing in a small home but a curse if it's disorganized. Tidy up and add a sense of style to a bookcase by grouping books in like sizes and colors. Insert baskets for warmth, texture, and storage. Add a layer of collectibles or three-dimensional objects such as travel keepsakes or heirlooms for simple, chic decor.
New & Improved
Chic white cabinets replaced dented metal kitchen cabinets, while new, modern stainless-steel appliances took the place of old models, giving the kitchen a much-needed update. To give the semblance of a wall, a finished pantry cabinet was scooted next to the fridge.
An open shelf or empty countertop is an opportunity for an artful still life. Here, the repeated aqua blue hue puts the open shelving into focus. 1970s Mikasa butterfly slates -- a tag sale find -- mingle with yellow and white pieces to add visual interest.
For a clean, modern look, bright white laminate countertops in matte finish and with square edges complement the simple lines of the new cabinets and shelves. Another way to revive old counters is to use a water-base paint and polyurethane sealant that's food-safe. Both options offer a fresh look to countertops.
The bedroom should be a personalized retreat -- for this homeowner, that means color and pattern and lots of it. White jazzes up the wall, rug, and bedding in this room with exaggerated pattern. Bright yellow, pink, and orange create a sunny getaway space. The slipper chair was a salvage find reupholstered in a large black-and-white print.
Accessories add personality and interest to a home. Colorful art books, a framed picture, and a potted flower add style to a bedside table. Live plants and flowers boost the décor's vibrancy throughout the home.