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Category:  Decorating

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7 Great Decorating Colors for 2006

by Julie Lohmeier

Picking the right color for a room can often be the most difficult decorating decision. The best way to find a color you like is to look at other homes, restaurants, and good old- fashioned paint chips. Here are some popular colors in decorating right now. The specific colors I refer to are from Benjamin Moore.

Buff: This is the new neutral. It looks great with trim - stained or bright white (my classic favorite), is neutral but not boring off-white. I have this color throughout nearly  half of my house including hallways, foyer, and basement. Everything works well with it. Buff can range from tan to deep taupe. Some specific colors are Tyler Taupe, Porter Ridge Tan, and Shelburne Buff. Also, consider Chestertown Buff, a designers favorite. It's warm, not too gold, not too taupe and not too bold. It works well in many settings and any room.

Mocha:  Similar to Buff but deeper in hue. This is the rich warm color of coffee and chocolate and a very popular color for 2006, used as an accent and alone as well as paired with turquoise and hot pink.

Blue: Making a big comeback, blue is no longer the robin egg's blue of your grandmother's house growing up or powder baby-boy blue but either a slate or steel blue (Jamestown Blue) or even a more vibrant Caribbean blue (see Ash Blue or Deep Ocean). It can go from bedroom to bathroom to more formal rooms quite easily. You'll often see this paired with white or red for a nautical theme or with light yellow or gold in traditional patterns. In our office, we used Summer Nights, a deep blue that's not navy, not turquoise, not royal but really rich and vibrant.

Coral: I'm seeing this color used in dining and living rooms. Use a pale color on the walls and a deeper hue as accents. Or be bold and use it alone. Check out Crazy for You. This is officially one of the hot colors for 2006.

Green: Green is big too - ranging from Seafoam to Lime (Pleasant Grove) to almost army drab (Weathersfield Moss). Spring Valley is a versatile soothing color, appropriate for living rooms and bedrooms. You can use a variety of colors to accent - from cream for an understated look to peach or plums for more dramatic contrasts.

Red: A favorite of decorators. Use it in dining rooms or living rooms where you want to make a bold statement. Great for traditional or Asian styles. Take a peek at Ladybug Red or Raspberry Truffle.

Gold: Paired with every color imaginable - red, blue, purple, or by itself. As an accent or as the predominant color. Very popular in Tuscan decorating, especially with faux finishes. Check out Concord Ivory - a very modern version of a traditional classic.

Bold colors still rule although lighter pastels are being shown as accents and increasingly for dining and living rooms. Although I have seen beautifully appointed rooms using purples and plums - a really hot trend a few years ago - it seems that these hues may be cooling off.

Julie Lohmeier is the veteran of numerous home remodeling and building projects.  From working hands on and doing much of the work herself to hiring contractors and construction managers, she has seen the entire spectrum of home improvement.  She shares her remodeling tips, home decorating ideas, and other various rants at  Sign up for her free email newsletter at:  


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