A study on color interactions via the Spring 2008 yellows

dining + kitchen collection : peake picnicware by Habitat

What I am talking about today is how the presence of others colors can modify the perception of a color? It is an important element when you are designing a room or creating a tablescape.

I select kitchen and dining pictures from the latest catalogue of Habitat. They illustrate current trends in decorations.

You could easily spot how the same yellow accessories create a different mood whether they are placed in a crisp white room, next to vibrant colors and with black wood furniture.

The Peake is the latest picnicware collection by Habitat. Nigel Peake designed a collection with distinctive urban-inspired illustrations and bold colors. I love it!

Coordinating Principles

How the overall room or tabletop look depends on several elements. The first thing to remember is that any color is influenced by their immediate neighbors. The impact can be up to a point that a color can take a totally different hue depending on the colors that sit next to it or the lighting. So before making a final decision, I recommend you:

  • analyze the relative proportions of each color in your design
  • analyze how the colors looks next to each other – try several ways to dispose colors next to each other
  • try to insert a neutral (white, grey, brown or black) between two colors and see how if it enhances or not the results

How to live with the Spring 2008 yellows?

The lemon yellow, canary yellow, mustard yellow, curry, marigold are the hot yellow colors of Spring 2008. Some tones evoke bright and lively while the ones with reds feel warmer.

I cannot be happier that the warm and cheerful yellows are hot again since I opted for bright sunny yellow walls on the entire second floor of my house. I love colors in home decor. My house is mainly decorated in darker and richer colors with a few bright colors for punch in specific rooms. I cannot live in a crisp pure white house, even for a day.

Living in a bright yellow room makes me happy. I like to use colors but I wish nonetheless to create a sophisticated atmosphere. So I toned down my sunny yellow in several ways.

First, you need to consider the level of natural light that you normally get. My row house does not provide a lot of natural light. Second, several lamps, wall sconces and ceiling fixtures allow me to modify the level of light intensity at will. I can go from a subdued mood up to the brighter task lighting level. From an architectural point of view, my space features a long, antique reddish bricks wall and an extensive use of warm medium brown wood. Both bring a rich feeling to the open spaced room.

Going back to the pictures from the Habitat Spring 2008 catalogue, you see three hot color trends for Spring 2008:

  1. The crisp white room with yellow used as the accent color
  2. The colorful, fun almost child-like yellow, orange, pink, and red scheme – you can also do the acid citrus
  3. The black theme with yellow accents, done here as casual chic for the patio


You can read on the PANTONE Fashion Color Report of Spring 2008 – download the pdf at the bottom of the page:

Warm, cheerful Freesia, like an uplifting ray of sunshine, is a friendly, inviting color to which people are instinctively drawn. It is also a color that allows for diverse accessorizing opportunities.

Since not everybody is ready to commit to these lively hues, my next post will be about how a small amount of a punch color can go a long way?

+ PEAKE city illustration dinner plate in melamine – price: £2.50
+ PEAKE picnicware collection at Habitat – starting at £2
+ SADIE champagne glass at Habitat – price: £3
+ SADIE tumbler at Habitat – price: £3
SADIE wine glass at Habitat – price: £3

+ Purple, Khaki Green, Yellow Green of 2008
+ Home Color Trends for 2008