All About Color With Lucie Ayres

Over the past several years, friend Lucie Ayres has guest posted here. Not only do I love it (writer’s block solution and busy schedule!) but I also love Lucie. She is full of pizazz, style, and is a super talented interior designer. To see her previous posts, go here and here. Today, she is presenting ALL ABOUT COLOR. Which I love, because if you know me, I am ALLLLLLL about color. Take it away, Lucie and THANK YOU!


It’s SPRING  (officially Summer, but hey, early summer) – a colorful time of year, one that inspires the ol’ spring cleaning, and also the busiest time for many interior designers.  It’s that REFRESH MY SPACE moment. Sure, you can clean up, and add some new throw pillows into the mix (new pillows are NEVER a bad idea) but if you REALLY want to update a space  – it’s all about thinking about your walls… particularly the paint color. That much might be obvious, but what’s not obvious is the type of paint you buy.


Paint samples by DRIKOLOR

Even this New Yorker article addresses high anxiety levels about choosing the right paint color, because it’s about much more than just the color – it’s about the light, the furnishings, the colors of the other rooms, the mood you want to evoke… so much to consider.


My absolute favorite paint company is a fairly new Australian company called Drikolor.  Their paints are the truest, deepest, richest colors I have ever seen.  They don’t use more than 12 ingredients per color and all the ingredients are RAW NATURAL MATERIALS – as organic as you can get.


After reading Kassia St. Clair’s brilliant must-read book The Secret Lives of Color, it’s clear that creating a perfect hue is not an easy process (bugs, urine, bone…it’s fascinating how paint colors were created). But a perfect color can transform a space – and the way you FEEL. Take Drikolor’s Ultramarine Blue – a color the French artist Yves Klein tried to get patented. It’s so rich and bold, it seems to pulsate on the wall from its own energy…



Which is why I obsess over this Yves Klein cocktail table:



And why I cannot wait to take professional pictures of the Ultramarine entry hall of a client’s pre-war Park Avenue apartment. (Follow me for more on that project-  tons of color there – @22Interiors).


But not everyone wants to be so bold.


These days whites, creams, and creamy whites are getting all the attention.  Even though color is making a comeback in home design, many clients still want clean white walls.  So what’s the best white?


For me, the can’t-go-wrong white is Farrow & Ball’s All White.  It’s never stark, but also never, ever yellow or gray. It works in the brightest of rooms as well as rooms that don’t get direct sun. It’s well rounded but crisp, which sounds like a wine review, but that’s what it is.


Design by 22 Interiors. Photo by Amy Bartlam.


Whites are very classic and restrained, of course. But what if you’re feeling more daring? What if you want to give your space some character… make it more unexpected?


One of my go-to options is Drikolor Caesiellus – a blue/gray sky-like color. We recently did an entire living room in it and it feels instantly like a Parisian flat in the 9th.


This is THE IDEAL blue/gray – no others come close. In person it has the depth of plaster paint. It’s beyond gorgeous.


(Terrible iphone pic by Lucie Ayres / professional pictures of above coming soon!!)


Other fun unexpected colors –


Farrow & Ball’s Setting Plaster which we did for Syndey Sierrota of the band Echosmith.  It’s not pink, it’s not peach, it’s an old world color that feels really warm compliments gray so well.

Design by 22 Interiors. Photo by Bethany Nauert.


I’ve also been dying to use red – this room by Bruce Bierman is just perfection.


Photo courtesy of AD


All in all, I say be bold and JUST GO FOR IT.


Paint isn’t permanent and can be (should be!) changed-up every handful of years. Paint is also MAGIC, because it can transform a space like nothing else, for a minimal investment. And if you’re overwhelmed – hire a consultant. Most designers such as myself offer specific “color consults.” The worst that can go wrong is that you don’t like the result and change it back. So why not treat yourself to a new coat and have some fun?


HAPPY SPRING SLASH SUMMER!! — Lucie Ayres / 22 Interiors

Josie Girl


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