Design at Altitude: Take your blue crush from the Colorado skies into your home
Design at Altitude
Recently, I was on a hike, enjoying an end-of-day escape, when I turned around to see where I had come from and was blown away by the color of the sky. Colorado is known for its light powder and is getting more renowned for its 300 days of sunshine each year. What’s not as well known, though, are the deep blues of the sky, especially this time of year. I don’t know if it’s how the light hits or the juxtaposition of the golden aspens with the blue, but the sky is so breathtaking with its million hues of blue, from deep azure to baby blue. It got me thinking about the how popular blue is right now and how to use it to enhance your home.
Granted, blue has always been popular — look at ocean-side homes, fun wallpaper and even midnight blue sofas. A few years ago, we worked with a client who wanted a fun, modern kitchen that would work in our mountain environment. After some research, we decided to go with a slate blue in the kitchen. With the surrounding green landscaping (or white in winter), the kitchen is warm and welcoming. The same color would not work in another client’s home because their kitchen space is smaller without as much natural light — but a lighter and brighter blue enhanced the small space and made it more of a statement.
A deep, dark blue accent wall creates a dramatic mood in a room. Again, it needs to enhance and fit the space. A dining room with sweeping views and dark walls is moody and cozy, but the dense hue could feel claustrophobic in a smaller space.
While I maintain that painting is an easy way to refresh a space, not everyone is so gung-ho on spending the time (or hiring out) to have a room painted frequently. Here are a few more tips for those who want to incorporate blue hues into their everyday spaces.
KITCHEN, DINING ROOM TRICKS
I love cooking in the fall, making butternut squash soup, pots of chili and sharing apple crisp with friends. We start spending a lot more time inside, and it’s a time when I change up the look of the dining room. I love the look of eclectic dinnerware. Some say mismatched; I say creatively paired.
Blue-patterned place mats are the perfect backdrop because they leave some neutral space. Pair with chambray blue cloth napkins and white plates. I might add in Mexican blue glasses if it doesn’t feel overwhelming. The finishing touch are a few serving bowls with splashes of color, or fancy candlesticks with blue candles.
The way my house is set up, my dining table is the focus when anyone comes to visit. I like to try out my latest favorites as the centerpiece. Instead of one huge decoration, I like to mix and match, allowing for a creative ensemble. I found some beautiful smaller bowls at a market recently. They are a bold blue with highlights of gold, perfect for fall. Although they are smaller, placed together they create a welcoming centerpiece.
BLUE IN THE BEDROOM
My master bedroom is a retreat — light and airy in the summer but much darker and more dramatic come winter. I found a deep blue luxurious fabric I had sewn into full-length window treatments that keep the warmth in. It completely changes the look and feel of the room.
Blue may not be your normal go-to color, but I am willing to bet that you will find it welcoming, a nice way to change up your space. Be playful and thoughtful with the color, and I promise, you won’t be blue.
Yvonne Jacobs has been designing for more than two decades and is the president of Slifer Designs. She loves finding design all around her and incorporating it into homes.