Lauren Hom, of Hom Sweet Hom, never shies away from repurposing paint. In fact, in the face of a few spare gallons of leftover paint from a mural project, she decided to makeover her kitchen. A few months and several coats of our Golden Hour and OMGreen later, the result is a colorful kitchen that’s bursting with retro charm and a truly unique color palette. “My natural inclination is always color,” says Lauren. “And after seeing so many neutral kitchens become the norm, I wanted something that set more of a mood. I’m a big believer that the way you style and decorate sets the mood for your whole space.” If you’ve been waiting to go bold, here are some of Lauren’s best tips for using color.
Don’t Be Scared of Color
With her graphic design background, Lauren is a little more fearless when it comes to wielding a paintbrush. “Paint feels like a really big deal because it covers a large amount of real estate in a room, but the beautiful thing is that it can always be painted over,” she explains. “Putting the brush to the wall is the scariest part. Clare’s curated color selection meant there was less of that choice paralysis. The beauty of having a space of your own is doing what you want with it!”
If you’re not already into using a lot of color in your home, Lauren advises to start small with accessories that offer a bold hit of color but aren’t as permanent as paint, like a mixer, an oversized vase, or a piece of furniture. When you see images of paint colors you love, look for spaces that feel similar to yours. Save them in a folder on Instagram or Pinterest and then go back and reference it when you’re ready to paint.
Use Paint as a Grounding Force
One of the reasons this yellow and green combo works so well is where Lauren used each paint color. Placing the green on the bottom of this colorful kitchen offers a grounding element to the space. “I got the tip from Bobby Berk originally,” says Lauren. “It makes the space feel bigger if the upper cabinets are the same color as the wall. I tend to be a mess in the kitchen and end up with clutter day-to-day, this arrangement is more forgiving.” Keeping light and bright up high bounces light around the room, while a dark color on bottom cabinets anchors the space while hiding dirt, smudges, and spills.
Base Colors on Fixed Elements
We all have those things in our home that we can’t change. Instead of fighting them, work with them. “I have warm, orange-y red concrete floors and I needed colors in the kitchen that would complement them,” says Lauren. “Starting with something as an anchor and using it as a jumping off point can really help focus your space.” Using color temperature helps too. Match warm or cool tones based on the mood you’re trying to set in your space or pick one color and then look for other colors that feel like a match. When in doubt, start simple!
Find Inspiration for your Colorful Kitchen Everywhere
If you’re really feeling color shy, start finding colors you love in familiar places. Look at your wardrobe and see what colors you’re naturally gravitating to. “You can work your way up to being more adventurous with color,” says Hom. Art is another place to find inspiring color combinations. You’re seeing color pairings work well in real time, so you know they’ll work together in your own home because you’ve already seen them in action. Pay more attention to what draws you in and you’ll realize that you already have a perspective on color.
Shake up your home and try embracing a colorful kitchen design. It will make every moment you spend there that much happier.
Photos by Kristle Marshall.