Home Decor

Great paint colours for spring and summer

Colour trends in the home. Find out where we're headed...you might be surprised.


Shop for a new paint colour while you ride the subway…

I get a lot of PR companies pitching me a lot of things. Ninety-nine percent of them are interesting, but not specifically relevant for the home section of Chatelaine magazine. That’s why this blog is so much fun. I get to tell you about things that don’t have a place in the magazine. Like Sico’s new colour campaign, on until the end of May. With the goal of helping Canadian (or more specifically, downtown commuters) get familiar with colour, they’ve taken over the Bloor subway station in Toronto.

Taken over in a big way. The turnstiles and most of the station have been plastered with giant yellow Sico stickers.

But what’s particularly fun, I think, are the GIANT paint chips that replace traditional advertising on the platform.

On top of that, there are videos that show paint being used in different applications. Now that’s a creative marketing campaign. I’m all for anything that de-mystifies decorating, and gets people thinking and talking about colour.

I had the chance to talk Sico’s marketing manager about colour trends in general for spring and summer 2011. You won’t be surprised to hear that colour trends move very slowly in the world of décor- and that’s a good thing I think. But to give you a general idea of where colour is headed, here are a few paint chips to note: (if you plan on using any of these paints, please please please go to a paint store and check the colours- computer monitors are famously bad at showing true colour)

Macedonian mauve: my first thought was horror.


But when I see this interesting image, I’m kind of curious.

They suggest colour blocking, and painting an entire wall, rather than a whole room. I have to say I kind of love that idea. One afternoon of work and you can drastically alter the look of your room. This deep purple would be fun with chocolate browns (think sofa, flooring), linen accents, lots of cream and white, grey. The key is moderation, and balancing it with earthy colours, not psychedelic ones.

Bright yellows are still hot hot hot.(This is called Clover Honey)


I’m not sure I totally buy this. I do think a yellow room is a happy comfortable room, but it reminds me so much of the 90s- I’m not sure I’m ready to go back there yet.

Coral (Love Potion)


I happen to LOVE coral. Makes me think I live somewhere tropical, even in January. I would not hesitate to upholster a whole sofa coral.

Grey-Warm Grey


This is really the key message here in terms of trends. But be warned, grey is very difficult to pick. Warm grey is what you want, not cool grey. My sister recently bought a house that was painted all various shades of grey. And while she loved it at first, with time, it became depressing and bleak. I also painted a bedroom grey once, paired with lots of blue silk. I thought it would be fabulous. It was dull. If you’re going to decorate with grey, I would suggest a warmer grey (like a slightly brown grey), with creamy whites, not blue whites. And accented with warmer colours, not cool blues. Except maybe in a room with southern or western exposure and a lot of natural light. With the right one, it’s a colour that will act as a neutral background for a good five years I think.

Well, those are my thoughts on colour. I’ll leave you with this image of tulips on Spadina Avenue in Toronto. I’m usually one for colour blocks, but this confetti approach left me speechless. I adore it.