A weekly blog series exploring different creatives' views on color and its use in interiors, art and design. We will dive deep into their obsessions with color. How and why they use color. You will get to know their stories and you may even gather some tips for using color in your own home. What is better than learning from the experts!
Designer Spotlight: Hooper Patterson
Hooper is an interior designer with office locations in both Wilmington North Carolina and Chicago. Her projects are diverse in style, geographic location and budget. Specializing in mixing patterns and texture, Hooper's style has been described as "traditional with a twist" and includes a "current, yet timeless, Southern Bent."
Let's hear how this Southern girl uses color and how her recent move to the windy city has influenced her.
Susan Jamieson: What one color represents your design style?
Hooper Patterson: I love blush tones. They are neutrals, warm and feminine. I love how they glow with natural light, candlelight and how they pop with crisp white trim. Blush tones are beautiful with grays, saturated colors like peacock and artwork really shines with blush as a backdrop.
HP: I see it as an accent. I love bold color in fabrics, wallpaper or carpets. Pops of color, layered with pillows, throws, lamps and artwork add the personality to a space.
SJ: How do you feel about matching colors in a room?
HP: I don't prefer to match. I know clients often feel comfortable when colors, furniture and fabrics match. I find it to feel too much like a showroom - it seems to lack character. When you can pull colors that compliment and contrast, you create a space that feels more collected and tells a story.
SJ: What color represents your personality?
HP: I love green - the bright leafy green. It has always been one of my favorite colors. It pulls from the outdoors, can be punchy and still feels organic and fresh, all at the same time.
SJ: What color comes to mind when you talk about:
Your favorite City .......right now, we are living in Chicago for my husbands job. It is winter, so gray comes to mind. However, we live on Lake Michigan. We just moved from Wilmington, NC, my hometown. It is on the coast. As long as I am looking at the water, I feel at home. There are days in the winter, when the Atlantic and the Lake have a dark blue undertone. I love that saturated smokey blue. In the Summer, the rich aqua of the Atlantic (and a color, I am hoping to see this Summer in Chicago) is one of my favorite hues. It exudes coastal living - wherever you are. It also exudes warmth - something this Southern girl will be ready for!
The House You Grew Up In .........The house you grew up in: We had a kitchen in my early childhood home that had mustard cabinets. It was the early 80's and it still scars me to this day. It is a color I am hesitant to use. Who knows, maybe my mom was on trend at the time?
Last Fabulous Dinner You Had ........It was last night. I ordered a pasta with pesto and the bright leafy green sauce was not only delicious but one of my favorite hues.
Your favorite Flower .......
My favorite flower is the Daffodil. When I was a child, my uncle had a daffodil farm. We picked them as children and it has always been a promenade flower at the centerpiece of family gatherings, weddings and most recently, at my grandmother's funeral. That flower and bright yellow hue always bring a smile to my face because it reminds me of my "Mimi" - she loved them and to this day, every time I see them, I think of her.
Your favorite season ......
Many hues of Blue - Summertime. Growing up at the beach, we spend summers on the water - swimming, boating, shelling. I get to work on a lot of homes on the coast and clients always request hues that can be found in the sea. Blues, aquas and everything in between remind me of my favorite season.... Summer!
Your Favorite Art ......
makes me think of gold.... Last year, for my birthday, I bought my first "major" piece of art. I fell in love with it the second I saw it and knew I had to have it. Her name is "Grace", by Brenda Bogart, and she is made of paper and gold leaf. I have her lit in a very prominent spot in our home and her gold leafing just glows.
Your Favorite Beauty product .... Pale pink. My favorite beauty product is a lip gloss by Sara Happ. It is called "the nude slip". It has just enough pink not to wash out my skin tone, but is natural and feminine and works day and night.
Your Favorite Article of Clothing ......That changes too! Right now, I am loving a pleated navy and gold velvet skirt. The navy is so rich and it looks great with a dressy black blazer or a brown leather jacket.
SJ: Name a color you never use?
HP: I never use red. I use tones of it - wine, pink, blush, fuschia, cranberry, even shades of orange, but I really struggle with integrating red into my designs or my wardrobe. When a client requests it, I always work it in and am so happy with the result, but I always hesitate. Maybe I need to expand my horizons!
SJ: Name a color you use frequently?
HP: I have used Benjamin Moore's "Pink Damask" in several different types of spaces. It is romantic in an bedroom, but sophisticated in a living room. It reminds me of "Duchess" by Bridget Beari paints. It is subtle and beautiful!
SJ: If you could pick a name for a color what would it be?
HP: If I was going to name my favorite green, I think it would name it "green with envy"
HP: We have two dogs. "Teddy" is a buff colored cocker spaniel and "Herald" is a solid black cocker spaniel. Herald is so black, his fur is almost navy. Teddy's coat changes throughout the year. It bleaches out in the summer months, but in the winter, it is a medium copper.
SJ: What is the Now Neutral?
SJ: What is your prediction for the next big color trend?
HP: I really like dark purple tones. I have been using lilacs over the last few years, but am now really leaning toward the dark purples and rich wine tones. Not Burgundy - that is not my favorite, but more like eggplant or deep purples.
SJ: What are the best color combinations?
HP: I love lilac and blush tones paired with really saturated colors like peacock blue. I always love the richness of chocolate with any shade of blue or orange - or both! Being a beach girl - all colors that come from the ocean view are gorgeous paired together. Blues and aquas go great with pale greens and bright saturated greens - it reminds me of the Summer marsh along the Intracoastal.
SJ: Best advise when it comes to picking paint colors?
HP: Seek professional help if you can. A designer has so many in his/her bag of tricks that they know are tried and true. If you can't - be careful of neutrals. I have had people tell me that they picked a gray or white because it should have been easy. It isn't. There are thousands of shades of both. I have seen grays go purple, green, brown and just plain drab. I have seen whites go pink, lilac, blue... so do your research. Sites like Pinterest and Houzz make good recommendations if you don't have a designer to help you. They also show spaces with the selected color so you can gauge if it will work for you. If you can get a small sample, do it. Paint it on a wall or a piece of cardboard. Tape it up and look at it throughout the day and night. It will change dramatically.