Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Trendspotting at the NYDC - Color Stories

Color forecasting is a tricky business, and an art all its own. But walking the floors at the New York Design Center this week, a few things are clear, a few directions distinct, and ALL are ready to roll (or brush) out, in upholstered furnishings, casegoods, textiles, accents or even paint, right off the showroom floors into your own home. It's What's New, What's Next, right now.

Parchment and Champagne

Upholstery at Hamilton Furniture

Reeded Console, Barbara Barry Realized by Henredon

Tracy Kendall's "Buttons" Wallcovering, Ted Boerner New York

Don’t call it beige. On almost every floor, in showrooms Hamilton Furniture (sadly, no relation!), Henredon and Ted Boerner, in contemporary, traditional and transitional showrooms, parchment finishes and champagne tones are keeping things chic, fresh and glamorous. A warmer, deeper ivory (with a kiss of pink or yellow) is showing up in upholstery, wallcoverings, and painted and applied finishes on casegoods.

Barely-there Tints

Artwork at the relocated and expanded Dennis Miller Associates showroom

Silk Velvet Upholstery at Saladino Furniture

Pale and ethereal, these are not your grandmother’s Palm Beach pastels. A little grayer, with a little glimmer, they reference the colors of iridescence, but with a grown-up sophistication. Perfect when served with parchment and champagne, and no better way to get your Glam on in the bedroom. The Queen of Barely-there, Barbara Barry, runs with the concept in the room vignettes at Realized by Henredon (well, not runs. Breezes through, elegantly). And the King of Castle Chic, John Saladino, wields these pale tints with a deft hand. I'd pair them with a sun-bleached Oushak, and punch up the scheme with some deeper corals or the orange of the moment, Persimmon.

In-Between Green

Upholstered Sectional at PROFILES

Silk Velvet Upholstery at Saladino Furniture

Somewhere between sage and olive lies a mossy green that’s one part modern, one part retro, but very now. It’s a near-perfect, not-quite-neutral, ideal on larger upholstered pieces. I took a Lichen to pieces at PROFILES and once, again, Saladino.

Off-the-Chart Colors

"Aaron" Chair at Bright

"Ella" Sectional at DESIGNLUSH

Christopher Farr Rug (displayed on the wall) and Leslie Anton's "Blossom" Pendant at Ted Boerner New York

These are the colors that fall between the lines of paint charts and the color wheel. Earthy and interesting but never muddy,they defy description through a hefty dose of gray and (sometimes) a little bit of pewter sheen. The perfect foil to modern leathers and rooms with a settled-in feel. They're the perfect way to add a sense of luxe to mid-century modern, and add warmth and luxe to contemporary spaces.

The New Orange

Elana Lounge Chair in "Poppy" at Bright

Vanessa Side Chair at Bright

Iconic Vladimir Kagan Sofa at Kagan Couture

Orange grows up, and you’ll fall in love. In velvet or mohair, like on the curvaceous sweep of Vladimir Kagan Couture’s classic sofa, this red-orange glows like the embers of a fine cigar. It runs the autumnal spectrum from bright rust to persimmon. You’ll just need a little to bring fireside warmth to a living room. I can also see this becoming the next new-classic color for the formerly-red dining room.

What colors are YOU seeing, loving?


  1. that button wall is so clever! keep the reports coming. can't wait to see what else you find. i'll have to live vicariously through you!

    ps. we're having a giveaway and would love for you to stop by!

  2. I'm so loving and wanting a velvet sofa or chair! Years ago, I saw a house tour of an actress who had this deep red or wine colored velvet sofa and I absolutely fell in love! Today, there are so many lush colors to choose from. I especially love the shape and color of the "Aaron" chair you have posted! Lovely.

  3. And velvets age SO beautifully, especially if they have some silk or viscose content. Better with age... we shoud ALL be so lucky!!

  4. You put so much effort into these posts! They're full of ideas, tips, good photos for examples, and you've gone to the trouble to really think about the content. Love your blog, I'll be a regular reader now that I've found it!

  5. That made my day! Thank you so much! I really appreciate that YOU appreciate my attempt at "quality over quantity"! Feel free to spread the word, and so glad you found me!