Expert Advice: The strategic use of color

A little color against a neutral foundation packs a big punch.

How much color is too much? Is there such a thing? This is undoubtedly a topic of debate and discussion as many interior designers are moving to a more maximalist style. This often involves multitudes of hues and textures, loads of accessories layered in and, you guessed it, loads of color. As designers with more of a bent toward minimalist style, the team at Beverly Serral Designs still likes to showcase the occasional colorful surprise. This is often achieved with a pop of color against a neutral foundation. Beverly Serral shares four ways her team gets that wow factor with color, just not too much. Small punches of color can and do pack big punches when used strategically.

1. Art.

Art is probably the easiest way to grab attention. We are fond of white walls, which really allow color to pop. We often add art to neutral wallpaper, tone-on-tone wallpaper and neutral tile.

2. Pillows.

We do love a good pillow in a great fabric, stuffed just so and, of course, in color. Strong blues and shades of persimmon are our favorite colors to use against the foundation of a white quilt, white sofa or solid sofa. 

3. Rugs.

Now this can be tricky and result in colors fighting if there is too much going on in the room. For instance, a patterned rug with multiple colors, plus color in art and pillows, and even (gulp) accessories can be overwhelming. Instead, try using a bold rug, and keep the other colors in the room to a minimum. These bedrooms have striking rugs but still feel restful.

4. Can’t decide?

Use green. It’s not just for 2022-23. Green (and blue) are our go-to colors year in and out for coastal design as they evoke nature of the land and sea, and that’s what a trip to the beach is all about. Experiment with different shades and hues, and mix and match (and add a little coral or persimmon), and you have a sophisticated, coastal design that just feels good. 

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