9 Ways to Amp Up Your Bathroom

Take your bathroom to the next level with these great ideas:

1. Shower Faucets

Arguably one of the most important features of the bathroom, the shower faucet(s) plays a big role in your day-to-day life, whether you realize it or not. 

As evidenced in the photo above, multiple shower heads, facing multiple directions, is become more and more popular, bringing that luxurious hotel spa feeling home with you. If you're not ready to go full on with your shower heads, a great way to slowly work your way there is switching your shower head out for a rainfall one.

This is the Delta Metal Raincan Shower Head (shown in their signature stainless finish), available at The Home Depot for $304.90. It's considered a low-flow shower head, saving you up to 60% the water usage of a non-low-flow shower head. Just because it's low-flow doesn't mean you should worry about the water pressure - capable of up to 80 psi, you're still getting enough pressure to make sure your shampoo actually rinses out and doesn't take forever to do so.

Delta also offers the HydroRain® 5-Setting Two-in-One Shower Head as well as the H2Okinetic® Pendant Raincan Shower Head, two more rainfall-style shower heads to help you relax and rejuvinate. 

 

2. Multiple Tiles

Tile is a staple in the bathroom, especially in the shower itself. But tile can get boring. So why not change things up a bit by throwing in a second (or even third) kind of tile. Just look at this gorgeous update featured on Decoholic.

There are infinitely more things to love about this bathroom than just the tile, but it is a great example of using multiple kinds of tile in one space and have it really work. Using tiles that are all in the same color palette (black and white) and in geometric styles is what makes these tiles fit so well together.

 

3. Recessed Caddies

Recessed caddies are the perfect way to create in-shower storage space and not actually take away any of your valuable shower space. They are also a great way to incorporate multiple tiles (per suggestion #2).

This one, featured on the Better Homes & Gardens website, is a great example of using multiple kinds of tile and complementary colors to really make the space pop. For more great recessed caddy inspiration, check out our Pinterest board. The best part? They aren't limited to the shower - you can put them anywhere.

 

4. A Clean Toilet

This is the American Standard Clean ActiVate Touchless Flush Right Height Elongated Toilet, a part of the Clean Collection that features easy-to-clean sides, unlike normal toilets that show you outlines of the piping.

(image source)

(image source)

We've talked about some of the benefits of this particular toilet before, but we didn't even cover how great the "Clean" style is. Look at the sides of the toilet - no outlines of pipes, making it infinitely easier to clean! Plus, this model has a motion-activated flush, so you don't have to worry about spreading germs.

 

5. Clever Storage

Smart use of space when it comes to bathroom storage is what keeps your bathroom looking in tip-top shape rather than cluttered and ignored. Consider creative cabinetry your new best friend. 

These pull outs are both excellent ideas, and a quick search of "bathroom storage solutions" on Pinterest yields endless more. Stop neglecting your bathroom's organizational needs and start enjoying your space again.

 

6. Lighting Through Windows

Properly lighting your bathroom is vital for ensuring ease of use at any time of day. No one wants to do their hair and makeup in the dark. One great way to get that extra lighting is with windows, and not just any windows - skylight windows in the shower. 

Placing the windows in the ceiling is a great way to get the light you want while still keeping the privacy important to a bathroom. You can opt for obscured glass for extra privacy without losing any great natural light.

 

7. Heated Flooring

Something I've long thought of as the ultimate in bathroom luxury, heating flooring is more affordable and accessible than ever before. Installing electric radiant heated flooring does require a bit more forethought, as is doesn't work as well with some kinds of flooring as others. It works best with tile flooring, and less great with coverings like hardwood and carpet. Just think about how wonderful it will feel to step out of a hot shower on a cold winter's day onto heated flooring. Mmmmm. Yes, please.

 

8. The Curb-less Shower

Besides being a fantastic idea for anyone who plans to age-in-place, curb-less showers offer a lot of great benefits, not to mention the their design aesthetics.

Curb-less showers are super easy to clean, and they actually make your bathroom space look larger because, by eliminating the curb, the shower becomes less of a fixture placed into the space and more a bonafide part of the space. And surprisingly, curb-less showers keep water from going everywhere more than a standard shower or tub/shower because the floor underneath the curb-less shower gets sloped toward the drain to prevent water spillage and run-off. Plus, they're just so darn visually appealing - just look at all these beautiful designs!

 

9. Statement WallS

I'm a fan of the statement wall no matter the room (of course, you wouldn't want one in every room), so when I saw that statement walls in bathrooms were starting to become popular, I latched on right away!

You can put it in the shower with some gorgeous tile or behind the toilet with some fabulous wallpaper, and the best part is, they look fantastic in bathrooms big and small. Whether you are using wallpaper or tile, or even a dramatic paint color, you can't go wrong with a statement wall. Or, you could really get ahead of the curve and go for a statement floor.

 

The average person will spend over 2 years of their life in the bathroom, so why not make it an enjoyable two years? For more bathroom inspiration, click here.


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7 Subtle Ways to Incorporate Pantone's 2018 Color of the Year into Your Life

On December 7th, renowned color company Pantone released their pick for the 2018 color of the year, Ultra Violet:

pantone-color-of-the-year-2018-ultra-violet-banner.jpg

Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute, Leatrice Eiseman, says Ultra Violet will "[take] our awareness and potential to a higher level ... [it] lights the way to what is yet to come."

Purple signifies creativity and imagination, as well as introspection. It is a luxurious, thoughtful color, stimulating the problem solving area of the brain. (You can read more about the color theory of purple here.)

While you may not be ready to run out and paint your entire home the luscious shade of Ultra Violet, here are 7 subtler ways you can incorparate the color into your life for 2018.

This gorgeous frosted glass lamp. It's just under two feet tall and is the perfect addition to any side table in your living room. Add some cute coasters, a candle, and some of your favorite trinkets, and your side table is all set! The Taylor Lamp is available at Chown Hardware.

Aromatherapy and essential oils continue to grow in popularity, so what better way to introduce Ultra Violet into your life than through all of your senses. Mr. Steam Aromatherapy has several steam head options, and the violet nirvana essential oil is available at Chown Hardware.

Schoolhouse Electric & Supply Co. has this super adorable Woodland Meadow sheet set and matching quilted pillow sham. It's available in twin, full, queen, and king sized sets, and offers the perfect subtle pop of Ultra Violet. The Woodland print is exclusively made for Schoolhouse by Austin-based artist Leah Duncan.

Subtly incorporate the color into your kitchen with this chicken-print tea towel from Portland-based shop Budd + Finn, named for the owner's rescue dogs, available in a variety of colors, including Ultra Violet.

The Galligaris Amelie chair is a sleek and comfy addition to any room. It's designed and manufactured in Italy, and comes in a variety of colors and fabrics. You can purchase the Amelie at Hip PDX.

McMinnville home decor shop MD Haney currently has this linen apron, (shown in eggplant), available on their website. An apron is the perfect way to start wearing Ultra Violet without much comitiment since you don't wear it out of the kitchen.

Last but definitely not least, you can get this James Ward china plate at Budd + Finn. The design features a bulldog in an Ultra Violet mask, to protect his identity after he finishes off the whole plate of cake. The plate is eight inches in diameter.

If you are ready to add more Ultra Violet into your life, you can find lots of great products at Wayfair.

To learn more about Pantone and Ultra Violet, check out their 2018 Color of the Year page.


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Beyond Subway Tile

Subway tile is one of the most popular backsplashes for kitchens and bathrooms right now. And why shouldn't it be? It's cool and chic and lends itself to practically every style of decor. But with its radical rise in popularity, perhaps it's time to look beyond subway tile - afterall, you don't want your kitchen or bathroom to look like everyone else's.

Maybe you still love subway tile and aren't quite ready to move on yet. One way to ever-so-slightly change things up is by changing up the orientation of your tile. Check out this wall where the tile runs top to bottom rather than side to side:

This simple difference completely changes the style and makes it much more unique, even though all they did was lay it in a different direction.

An important step to leaving subway tile behind is to add a bit of color. Subway tile is nice a white, so while it looks beautiful when it's clean, it can get kind of boring. This Dove Gray piece by MS International is just the ticket:

Next, it's time to think about size. The standard subway tile sizing is 3" x 6". This beautiful Marazzi tile is a long and skinny 6" x 24", with great color variation to it:

Or you could go for shorter and taller, like this 12" X 24" MS International Carrara:

Instead of going bigger, go smaller. Sheets like these are great options for a mini-subway tile look:

Another beautiful look  is mirrored subway tile, and it can go around fireplaces (like below), as well as in kitchens and bathrooms, adding just that extra bit of sparkle and glamour to a room.

Branching really far from the classic rectangular-look of subway tile is the arabesque shape. You can opt for a basic white, a colorful look, or even a tile with intricately carved details.

Arabesque tile has those lovely curves that keep the eye moving, and it lends a bit of a old world feminine flair to a room.

A style that's becoming more and more popular is octagonal tile. You can get it in big individual tiles like these:

Or in smaller sizes on sheets, like these:

And of course, there's a sparkly option for that extra glitz:

If you kind of like the look of octagon tile, but you aren't completely sold, you could try a rhombus mosaic tile that is laid in a hexagonal-looking pattern but has three-times the grout lines.

There's also the slightly simpler hexagon style:

To really vary it up, consider having an area of tile that's different from the rest as an accent piece:

Penny tile is a classic look, and you can also get it in varying sizes.

One of my personal favorites is the Moroccan fish scale tile, like this eclectic boho beauty:

Tile comes in so many different patterns. Here's just a few more options:

For a really natural, textured look, something like this is a great option:

And there's always the classically seamless look of matching the countertop to the backsplash, which ends up looking something like this:

Whether I've been able to change your mind about subway tile or not, hopefully you're now more aware of the hundreds of styles of tile out there. (And hopefully you're not too overwhelmed by it.) 

Besides your typical home improvement store, a great place to find fun tile is Wayfair. And you can always get inspiration on Pinterest.


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Choosing the Right Countertop Material for Your Lifestyle

There is an abundance of countertop materials to choose from when renovating your kitchen - marble, quartz, quartzite, soapstone, butcher block, concrete, granite, limestone, laminate, recycled glass, stainless steel, terrazzo, ceramic tile, and even paper composite. But which material is right for you and your lifestyle?

Let's take a look at the pros and cons of some of the most popular materials:

MARBLE

Pros: The look (obviously); marble is as classy as it gets; it's mostly heat durable; and it's timeless so you maintenance aside, you won't want to change it.

Cons: Marble is a porous surface so it will absorb liquids and stain and etch, meaning it needs to be resealed every year or two. It gets nicked, cut, and scratched easily. Plus it's the one of the most expensive materials you can pick for your countertops.

If you watch home improvement shows at all, you've probably heard the phrase "carrara marble" thrown around a lot. Carrara marble is a variety of marble that is one of the highest qualities of marble, and it comes in the typical white and blue-gray color people picture when they think of marble. Marble is absolutely beautiful, but it is also extremely expensive. If you are going for a kitchen that is luxurious, timeless, and more show-than-tell, marble might be the right countertop for you.

QUARTZ

Pros: Quartz is the man-made version of marble, so you get the beauty of the real stuff, combined with great engineering that has gotten rid of the flaws, making quartz stain, scratch, head, acid, and impact resistant. It's also a non-porous surface, so you don't ever have to reseal it - you gotta love low maintenance.

Cons: Like the real thing, quartz can get chipped, particularly on the corners and edges, and the repair work requires a professional.

We here at Square Deal Construction Company love quartz. We always include it as an option in our kitchen remodel estimates because we think it's so great! If you like the look of marble, but you have a budget and you actually use your kitchen on a daily basis, quartz is probably the countertop for you. To see what your kitchen would look like with quartz, check out Cambria's online app DragonVision, or if you have iOS, you can use the Cambria AR app.

GRANITE

Pros: Granite comes in a huge variety of color options and variations, and it can be polished (shiny) or honed (matte). Once it's been sealed, granite is non-porous so it's easy to clean. It's also mostly resistant to heat, cuts, and scratches.

Cons: Needs to be sealed! Seriously, granite absorbs absolutely everything if it's not professionally and properly sealed, and periodically resealed. Another con is how easy it is for the corners to get chipped.

Because they are anything but man-made, granite countertops are one-of-a-kind. If you don't mind a little more maintenance for your counters, and you are possibly interested in more rare colors, granite just might be what you're looking for. You can see what different granite colors look like in a kitchen with the Keystone Kitchen Visualizer.

CONCRETE

Pros: Because concrete is so sturdy, it's almost completely stain, heat, and water resistant, as long as it's been properly sealed. It's also super easy to customize - everything from the thickness to the edges to the color to the finish can be customized.

Cons: Concrete will patina (darken in color) over time and it does require periodic maintenance such as resealing to keep it in tip top shape.

If you're going for a more unique, very stylized aesthetic in your kitchen, concrete might be just the countertop you need.

RECYCLED GLASS

Curava  Recycled Glass Surfaces from  Keystone Granite

Curava Recycled Glass Surfaces from Keystone Granite

Pros: Recycled glass countertops are super unique and fun. They have large pieces of glass to significantly more finely ground pieces. It's also mostly resistant to cuts, scratches, and heat, although that varies by manufacturer.

Cons: The two biggest cons for recycled glass surfaces is that they can stain and how wide a cost range there is.

If you want a more colorful, eco-friendly kitchen, recycled glass is a good way to go, although you should definitely do more research into which manufacturers are better.

BUTCHER BLOCK

Pros: Butcher block brings some often much-needed warmth and character to a kitchen, and it is a great way to have multi-use surfaces. They are also extremely sanitary when they've been properly sealed. 

Cons: Butcher block needs to be sealed and oiled regularly to stay in good condition. It's not a great material to put around a sink because of how wet the sink area usually is, but it's a good option for a counter space near the oven or as an island top. The wood is also susceptible to scratches and dents, just like a regular cutting board.

If you like a more natural look, and you need multi-functional space, you should consider adding some butcher block to your kitchen.

 

You can find more information on countertop materials at these locations: Studio McGee's rundown of countertop surfaces pros and cons; Consumer Reports "Best Countertops for Busy Kitchens" report; Stock Cabinet Express's comparison of granite versus quartz; the Countertop Preview consumer toolbox Countertop Comparison Chart; Jenna Burger's helpful rundown of materials; Zillow's guide; and Lindsay Stephenson's revisit of quartz countertops.


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The 2018 Color(s) of the Year

While the Godfather of the color world, Pantone, has yet to release their color choice for 2018, (which we are eagerly awaiting), they have released eight color palettes to inspire 2018 designs. You can read a rundown of the palettes at Elle Décor. In the meantime, here’s what some of the big paint companies are pushing for 2018.

Behr released a palette of 20 colors, with the lead color being In The Moment (T18-15), a pretty, serene shade of blue-green, perfect for an update farmhouse look.

In The Moment

In The Moment

Ready for a bold statement color in 2018? So is PPG Paints, selecting Black Flame (PPG1043-7). Don’t worry – Black Flame isn’t that black, but it does have all the power of a dark color.

Black Flame

Black Flame

Perhaps Kelly-Moore Paints hasn’t gotten the memo about running from neutrals because Bahia Grass (KM4782) is barely a few green steps away from grey.

Bahia Grass

Bahia Grass

Going in a completely different, but exciting and warm direction is Benjamin Moore’s Caliente (AF-290). While I'm personally not a big fan of red, I'm looking forward to seeing more color in decor for 2018, even if it isn't my favorite color. Plus, Caliente has a very refined feel to it, keeping it from being obnoxious.

Caliente

Caliente

And last but definitely not least, our favorite paint company Sherwin-Williams chose Oceanside (SW 6496) for their 2018 color of the year. It’s bright, playful, and exactly the cure we need to finally get away from the monochromatic, minimalistic neutrals that have been ruling the color world as of late. Check back soon for a post all about different ways you can decorate with this brilliant color.

Oceanside

Oceanside


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Fall Home Decor Trends 2017

Bring out the pumpkins, throw on the plaid; there is officially only one week left till fall! The fall is a glorious season of change. Everything is a little brighter, a little moodier, and a little more colorful. You may be getting ready to dust off your autumnal decor, but while your at it, consider a few of these trending home decor items.

1. Dark Green

A big trend for this fall is the color green. Whether it's painting your walls a beautiful viridescent color, hanging a leafy wall paper, tossing some jade throw pillows around, or bringing the outside inside with lush wreaths, green is the way to go.

2. Brass Finishes

Experts tell us that people are getting tired of the ever-so-trendy copper look and are moving on to brass, and specifically aged brass. This may be great news if you're a budget-conscious designer like me - brass doesn't have nearly the price tag copper has. You can find great brass pieces at flea markets, vintage shops, and thrift stores.

3. Quilting

What better to keep you warm through those chilly fall nights than a beautiful quilt? Quilts have such wonderful details and can be found in monochrome coloring or any other color combo you might want. They are an excellent complement to the luxurious feel of velvet, bringing a bit of rustic down-home flavor to a room. Plus, if you can't find one that's exactly what you want, basic color blocked quilts are super easy DIYs for beginners. And if you need some help, you can always ask grandma.

4. Nailhead Details

Nailhead furniture is a bit edgy and a bit old school (like Renaissance old school). If you're lucky enough to find a piece with brass nailheads, this becomes a great way to bring a bit more brass into a room at the same time. Two trends with one piece! Here's a great nailhead armchair from Gallery Furniture.

5. Wood-Look Tile

We've talked about wood-look tile before, but it never hurts to mention it again. Wood-look tile is a great alternative to hardwood flooring, plus you can put it anywhere you would normally put tile, like on the walls of a shower, to bring a little of the outside into your bathroom.

6. Mix-n-Match

Gone are the days of furniture sets. Design experts are now loving mix-matched furniture. This is a great way to bring in more color and more texture to your home, as well as lending to the eclectic playful vibe that's trending right now.

7. Matte Black Fixtures & Faucets

Forget stainless steel. Fall 2017 is all about matte black. It's a great finish that lends itself to a lot of different styles - edgy, chic, luxurious, farmhouse, rustic, boho, etc. Chown is definitely a place to check out if you're on the hunt for some matte black hardware.

8. Velvet Fabrics

Luxury is in and that means velvet, (or velour for the budget-conscious). Velvet has a soft, inviting texture, and unlike cold leather, velvet will keep you warm through the fall and winter.

9. Blush

This color is often jokingly referred to as "Millennial Pink." As a millennial myself, I have no problem with that because blush is such a gorgeous shade of pink. It's refined without being to girly, offering just the right amount of femininity. Blush is also a great way to bring lighter colors to a dark room during a cloudy, overcast season.

10. Terra Cotta

Terracotta is not just for the Tuscan style anymore - it's popping up all over, especially as the tile choice for kitchen floors. Using terracotta details is a great way to bring an unexpected texture to a room, and it lends a warm shade of orange to the space. You can find terracotta pots at any local home improvement store or garden center to aid in bringing the outside inside.

11. Textural Details

Colors step aside, texture is in. Here are some great ideas for adding texture to your space: mixing like-colored items with different textures, using cork as wall decor, chunky knits, woven baskets, or faux flora. Texture adds dimension, making you want to reach out and touch something. 

12. Moody Jewel Tones

In addition to dark green and blush, jewel tones are the go-to colors for interiors right now. They bring a moodiness to a room that is perfect for the fall/winter season. Darker colors bring character and personality to a room. They ground the space and add an extra layer of coziness. Plus, with the right furniture and accessories, they can be very luxurious and elegant.

13. Bone Inlay Furniture

This trend is a bit more boho, which is probably why I'm loving it so much. There's something almost whimsical about furniture pieces that have bone inlay detailing. Just look at this gorgeous example from Nadeau. The delicate nature of the inlay makes it a great statement piece for any room, after all, the details make the design.

14. Local Materials

Here in the Pacific Northwest, buying local has always been in style. It's great for the local economy! All of the pieces mentioned in this blog post are local to Portland and the Pacific Northwest. A great resource to check out is SCRAP PDX, located just west of Powell's.

15. Curated Collections

Designers are loving vintage details and eclecticism. Displaying a well-curated collection is a great way to bring this into a room. Collections can range from figurines to baskets to camera equipment to artisanal blown glass - you name it, someone probably collects it. Personally, I love vintage postcards - I try to get at least one from every city I visit.

16. Graphic Patterns

While minimalism is on its way out, the graphic and geometric nature of the patterns it brought in with it are here to stay, just perhaps in more color. Graphic patterns make for great detail pieces. You can find them on things like rugs and throw pillows among other things. I've also seen some great DIYs that feature graphic wallpaper like this one from Manolo Walls on the back of bookshelves. 

17. Naturalism

A great place to find texture is in nature, and so natural features are coming into the spotlight along with the need for texture. Reclaimed wood is definitely the heart of this movement, and companies like TerraMai are offering what they call "Reclaimed Treasures" such as exquisite live edge slabs that make great table tops, counters, bars, doors, and whatever else you want.

18. Brown as the New Black

The experts are saying that deep chocolate brown is the new black. It's warmer and friendlier than black, but still brings the power of dark toneage. While personally I believe that black is never going to be replaced, I am definitely a fan of mixing chocolate brown with black in my decor for a more interesting, depth-filled look. For inspiration, check out French Roast from Sherwin-Williams.


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Everybody Loves Hardwood Floors, But ...

Let’s face it – hardwood floors, while exquisitely beautiful, are not as durable as we would like. They scratch and chip and need to be re-stained. Not to mention the warping and staining that can happen if you spill on the floor & don’t clean it up fast enough or if you have a water leak in your home. And if you’ve got kids or pets (or both) the problems just happen sooner. Eventually, you look at your floor and all you see is the dents and scrapes and imperfections where your once beautiful flooring sat. You find yourself wondering if you should have gone with that laminate alternative instead.

So what if I told you there was a way to get the beauty of hardwood floors with the durability of tile?

Okay, maybe this isn’t a new concept to you, but wood-scraped tile has come so far in the last 5 years! Here are some of the PROS of wood scraped tile:

  • Durability – Tile flooring is considerably more durable than hardwood. It can withstand scratches and scrapes and your dog’s claws. Plus, unlike porous wood, tile is more resistant to moisture, especially porcelain as it is denser, so (if installed correctly) you don’t have to worry about warping. Porcelain is even fireproof.
    • A Note: Wood scraped tile comes in ceramic and porcelain. If you go for a ceramic tile, make sure to get it glazed and sealed as this significantly increases its durability and water resistance capabilities, although porcelain still has a longer lifespan than ceramic.
  • Maintenance – Tile is so low maintenance, especially compared to hardwood. It’s easier to clean, porcelain is stain resistant, and it is relatively easy to replace a tile or two if need be.
  • Warmth – Tile is great because you can install radiant heating pads underneath to keep your toes warm in the colder months. You can’t do that with a lot of varieties of hardwood.
  • Selections – There are just as many, if not more options when choosing a wood-scraped tile instead of hardwood. There are hundreds of colors options, different wood-look designs, and many different plank width options. You can even get “reclaimed” wood-scraped tile! You can also lay the tile into different patterns like brick-joint, corridor, and herringbone (pictured below).
  • Price – Tile is equivalent to, and usually cheaper than wood, especially when the wood market gets volatile.
  • Outdoor Usage – You can put tile outdoors with no concern, unlike wood, making your outdoor kitchen patio as dreamy as you could imagine it.
  • The Look – It has often been a past concern that because of grouting, wood-scraped tile will never look quite as real as hardwood. But this really shouldn’t be a concern. Getting tile with rectified edging means that you can put them closer together and use less grout – and the tile will look just as authentic as real wood. And while tile is a bit difficult to install, so is hardwood and tile is more cost-effective than hardwood.

You can find wood-scraped tile at your local home improvement store or flooring store, as well as online. If you are interested in learning more about wood-scraped tile, check out Daltile.


Color Theory 101

THE BASICS

The phrase "color theory" may sound like something art students would care about and not much else, but I think any one who ever plans on even looking at paint colors should have an understanding of some basic color theory.

If you have a basic high school education, you probably know that there are six colors: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple. (Science makes the distinction between blues, adding in indigo as a seventh color, but we're going to stick to Art's six colors for this conversation.)

There are cool colors - blue, green, and purple - and there are warm colors - red, orange, and yellow.

Red, yellow, and blue are called primary colors because they combine to make all the secondary colors - green, orange, and purple.

There are also tertiary colors: red-purple, red-orange, yellow-orange, yellow-green, blue-green, and blue-purple. This is when a secondary color has more of one primary color than the other.

(color wheel courtesy of  pixabay )

(color wheel courtesy of pixabay)

HUES V. TINTS V. SHADES V. TONES

Hue: a pure color

Tint: a hue with white added

Shade: a hue with black added

Tone: a hue with grey added

PAIRING AND COMBINING COLORS

There are many different ways colors can be paired and combined.

Complementary colors are the most basic combination of colors. Complementary colors sit directly across from each other on the color wheel. Basic examples of complementary colors include: red and green; blue and orange; yellow and purple.

Analogous colors are 3-4 colors who sit adjacent to one another on the color wheel. For example, blue-purple, purple, and red-purple. Analogous colors give off a harmonious feeling.

Split-Complementary might be a bit confusing, so follow me on this one: the main color and the two colors adjacent to the main color's complementary color. So say your main color is red. It's complementary color is green, so red's split-complementary colors would be yellow-green and blue-green. (Now might be a good time to scroll back up to the color wheel.)

Triadic colors are 3 colors that are equally spaced around the color wheel. This one can get confusing depending on the color wheel you look at because everyone spaces things a bit differently, but just as a basic reference, the primary colors (red, yellow, blue) are also a triadic pairing, as are the secondary colors.

THE NEXT STEP: COLOR PSYCHOLOGY

Now to the important stuff - colors express emotion. This might seem like a "duh" moment, but not everyone is aware that colors have as strong of an effect as the do. So the following sections will go into a bit of detail about what each color can symbolize and some of the physical effects they may have. (Keep in mind that this is specifically as these colors relate to Western Culture.)

activating, adventurous, anger, antagonistic, assertive, country, courageous, cultivated, danger, demanding, desire, dramatic, dynamic, earthy, elegant, energy, established, exciting, expanding, expensive, heat, hot, impulsive, love, magnetic, mature, motivating, overly-aggressive, passion, powerful, provocative, refined, rich, robust, spontaneous, stimulating, stirring, strength, sturdy, sumptuous, tasty, temperamental, violent, warlike, warm, warning

It is best to use red minimally, as it physically stimulates the heart, raises blood pressure and heart rates, and makes the viewer feel a sense of urgency almost lending to anxiety.

active, affordable, animated, childlike, communicative, confidence, courage, energizing, expansive, fire, food, friendly, frivolous, fruitful, fun, glowing, good-natured, gregarious, happy, harvest, hot, ignorance, jovial, juicy, loud, optimistic, persuasive, raucous, self-assured, sluggishness, sociable, spontaneous, success, sunset, tangy, vital, warmth, whimsical

Orange is friendly and inviting, and it depicts movement and energy. Viewing orange will stimulate the logic center of the brain, but too much of it can cause anxiety.

abundant, autumn, awareness, betrayal, bright, buttery, caution, cheering, comfort, cowardice, creativity, easy, energetic, enlightening, friendly, fun, happiness, hazard, hospitable, hot, illuminating, innovative, intellect, irresponsible, jewelry, joy, lively, luminous, mellow, multi-cultural, nourishing, optimism, original, perky, pleasing, radiating, soft, stimulating, sunbaked, sunshine, surprise, sweet, tasty, unstable, warm, wheat

Yellow gives the impression of happiness and cheerfulness. The purest yellow is seen as child-like, while darker shades are considered more antiquated. Like orange, yellow can stimulate the logic center of the brain, but again, beware of long-term exposure leading to anxiety.

acidic, artsy, balance, bold, calm, camouflage, citrusy, classic, cool, drab, earth, environment, envy, fertility, finance, forest, fresh, gaudy, grass, growth, guilt, harmony, healing, health, hushed, jealousy, jewel-like, life, lightweight, lively, luck, lush, luxurious, military, mold, money, natural, neutral, new, new beginnings, prosperity, pungent, quiet, reassurance, refreshing, rejuvenating, reliable, renewal, restful, safari, sharp, sickening, slimy, soothing, spring, startling, stately, tacky, tart, traditional, trendy, trustworthy, up-scale, youthful

Green is representational of balance and harmony, stability and affluence. In fact, it even stimulate harmony in the brain, between the body and the emotions, which can aid in making decisions quickly and strongly.

aids concentration, aloof, aquatic, authoritative, basic, brisk, calming, clarify thoughts, classic, clean, coldness, compassionate, confident, conservative, constant, contentment, convivial, cool, cordial, creativity, credible, dependable, depression, distant, dreamy, electric, energy, envy, exhilarating, expansive, faithful, fear, femininity, flags, gemstone, genial, healing, heavenly, high spirits, impressive, infinity, integrity, introspective, lightweight, lively, loyalty, masculinity, melancholy, oceans, open, patient, peaceful, protection, quiet, reassuring, refreshing, reliable, restful, sadness, security, serene, sky, soft, sophisticated, spiritual, sprightly, stirring, strong, tasteful, thought-provoking, traditional, tranquility, transcendent, tropical, true, trust, vibrant, water, young

Blue is the best of both worlds - it's calm and friendly but also social. It can curb appetite and stimulate productivity.

abundance, aloof, ambition, contemplative, creativity, curative, dignity, distant, dramatic, enchanting, expressive, fanciful, imagination, intensely exciting, introspective, intuitive, lightweight, luxury, meditative, moodiness, mysterious, nobility, nostalgic, peace of mind, prestigious, protective, rich, romantic, royalty, sensual, sentimental, soul-searching, spiritual, subduing, thoughtful, thrilling, visionary, wealth, wistful, witty

Deep purple is considered to be evidence of wealth and luxury, while paler purple is spring-like and romantic. Purple stimulates the problem solving area of the brain and aids in creativity.

(includes peach and coral) action, affectionate, attention-getting, compassionate, composed, cozy, danger, delicate, delicious, desire, dusky, embracing, exciting, feminine, festive, flexibility, flirtatious, fragile, fruity, fuzzy, gaudy, gentle, happy, healthy, high-energy, hot, immaturity, innocent, intimate, inviting, life force, modest, nostalgic, physical comfort, playful, romantic, sensual, sentimental, soft, stimulation, subtle, sweet, tactile, tender, theatrical, tropical, vibrant, weak, wild, youthful

NEUTRALS

(includes taupe) authentic, basic, bland, boring, classic, compromising, conservative, crisp, dependable, discreet, dull, flexible, inconspicuous, modest, neutral, organic, outdoor, practical, quality, rugged, rustic, tasteless, timeless, versatile, woodsy

appetizing, comfort, conservative, delicious, dogmatic, durable, earthy, experience, friendly, grounded, longevity, natural, outdoors, practical, reliable, rich, robust, rooted, secure, sheltering, solid, stable, steady, supportive, traditional, warm, wholesome

accountable, balance, basic, classic, conformist, conscientious, conservative, corporate, deliberate, detached, dull, dutiful, efficient, enduring, formal, fundamental, gloomy, intelligence, lack of energy, logical, mature, methodical, modest, neutrality, practical, professional, quality, reliability, reserved, resolute, responsible, restrained, sad, security, sober, solid, sophisticated, staunch, steadfast, timeless, unobtrusive

basic, bold, classic, classy, death, depression, dramatic, elegance, empowering, evil, expensive, formality, heavy, intimidation, invulnerable, magical, menacing, modern, mourning, mysterious, nighttime, oppression, powerful, prestigious, protection, sober, sophisticated, strong, stylish, suppression, underworld, wealth

airy, arctic, bridal, bright, clarity, classic, clean, clinical, cold, comforting, creamy, easy, efficient, emptiness, ethereal, fresh, good taste, goodness, hope, innocence, isolation, lightweight, natural, neutral, openness, pristine, pure, silent, simplicity, smooth, soft, spotless, sterile, subtle, warm, winter

White can spark a sense of creativity as it is often viewed as a clean slate.

METALS

bling, divine, dreamer, egotistical, expensive, gaudy, glowing, greed, intuitive, luxurious, opulent, prestigious, prosperity, radiant, rich, self-righteous, traditional, valuable, wealth, wisdom

classy, cool, dreamer, dull, glamorous, graceful, high-tech, indecisive, insecure, modern, non-committal, sleek, stylish

RESOURCES

If you are interested in learning more about color theory and the psychology of color, Pinterest has a lot of great infographics, your local library will more than likely have books on the subject, and you can check your local art school or community college for color theory classes.


In Appreciation of Edison Bulbs

If you've ever stepped inside our Newberg office, you would know immediately that we here at Square Deal love Edison bulbs. They're in the front office area, in the conference room, in the back office area, and in the kitchenette. We have 26 Edison bulbs in total!

Just a few of the lighting features around the office.

Just a few of the lighting features around the office.

Edison bulbs are considered "vintage," but obviously these light bulbs were made much more recently and designed to look older. In the 1980s, a guy by the name of Bob Rosenzweig started reproducing the bulbs, and they've steadily increased in popularity ever since.

Lighting fixtures around our front desk area.

Lighting fixtures around our front desk area.

The modern reproductions of the classic bulbs are significantly more energy efficient, and Swedish furniture & decor superstore Ikea even offers several different LED versions, a design they call Lunnom.

You can do a lot with the bulbs, such as something more sturdy and fixed like our pipes, or hanging via chord from the ceiling, putting them in a table lamp with a shade or glass, filing a chandelier with them, putting them in a wall sconce, hanging them in a pendant fixture - the possibilities are pretty much endless.

The bulbs lend well to many different decor styles, from modern to rustic to farmhouse to boho to craftsmen to eclectic to industrial, and can be purchased anywhere normal light bulbs can be found. You can even get a 6-pack of them from Amazon for less that $25.

For more Edison bulb inspiration, check out our Pinterest board.

We want to know what you think! Tell us your thoughts on Edison bulbs in the comments below!