Styling the Havana Way

Cuba’s capital, Havana, is celebrating its 500th year anniversary in November this year, a legacy that has led to a delightful cultural atmosphere, one that has drifted into the design sector. The style of Havana decor is a wonderful, bright and fun, as well as easy to replicate with a few simple touches. Here are some key trends that easily bring Cuban decor into your home.

Colors

Cubans love vivid colors, from bright hues faded under the sun to simple pastels. Ocean-inspired blues and greens marry well with terracotta oranges and vibrant yellows. Use these shades on large walls and contrast with different colored trim.

Photo by MindtheGap.

Weathered and Rustic

Cuban homes often feature textured layers of paint and plaster and rustic furnishings. Use a lime wash paint to give the walls a weathered look and, for furnishings, introduce some texture with chunky wood pieces and rustic metal.

Photo by The French Bedroom Co.

Cement Tiles

Colorful, patterned cement tiles are a great way to bring Cuban inspired patterns into your home. On the walls, floors, bathrooms or patio, these tiles add interest and contrast in any room.

Photo by Original Style.

Tropical Plants

Nothing says Cuban style like large leafy, tropical plants. Inside or on the patio, it’s all about volume to create a dramatic lush look.

Photo by Tesalate.

1950s Nostalgia

Cuba’s 1950’s cars are iconic and still grace the streets today. Use vintage adverts, car photos and licence plates to add this fun look to your Cuban styled home.

Photo by The French Bedroom Co.

Art Deco

Havana is full of beautiful Art Deco buildings at every turn. Introduce a few Art Deco antiques or replicas as key pieces to fill spaces and to add interest and charm to a room.

Photo by Sweetpea.

Cuban decor is nostalgic and charming — a trend that is likely here to stay. With a few easy touches, a room can be transformed into a bright and fun haven to enjoy a mojito in as if you were in Havana!

Photo by Alem Sánchez.

With literally millions of shades and hues to play with, color can also be intimidating. In a recent post by Northeast Meetings + Events, a series of experts give their professional advice on how to utilize color to enhance an entertainment venue and decoration. Fulfill the entertainer in yourself with their insight!

Expert advice varies on if there should be a color limit or if there’s a perfect strategy to picking colors. But when you do, internationally recognized color expert Leatrice Eiseman suggests starting with one lead color. “Then build the other colors around it.” And always take into consideration the existing room’s colors and lighting. “Whatever the venue is you’ve got to take into consideration what is already there that is immovable. What could you do to draw attention away from or disguise a presence of color that really is interruptive?”

As Director of the Eiseman Center for Color Information and Training, and the executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, Eiseman definitely has the know-how on color. She says that early in her career people outside of fashion didn’t pay much attention to color. “When I started out I’d often meet with a bunch of engineers sitting there with crossed arms,” she says. “But people have realized the psychological impact color has. … Color is a very important aspect of any work you do across design industries.”

When using color in decor, for events or otherwise, consider the mood you want to establish. 

Photo by Kaboompics.com

“The use of cool colors and hues such as blues can help calm and relax individuals and generate clearer and a more relaxed mind-set, great for business sessions,” says Sarah Kelly, senior event producer with Cantrav Services. She often incorporates color to set a mood. “While the use of warmer colors and hues such as ambers and reds can help stimulate and generate a more active and warm response, great for team-building or brainstorming sessions,” she adds.

Photo by Pixabay.

Photo by Designecologist.

You can even use color to play off of factors such as the season of the event, suggests Dwayne Thomas, owner of Portland lighting company Greenlight Creative.

“There are some perennial things. If I do a fundraiser in the fall, there’s a 50-50 chance it’s going [to show] fall colors. In winter, blues tend to be more popular, and in the summer, reds are more popular.”

 

“Color adds an additional depth and sparks interest,” says Kelly, who suggests that planners be bold and purposeful — but not too bold. “There are two mistakes people can make, either using too much color and overwhelming guests’ senses or being afraid to use it at all and not fully committing to the event’s theme or identity,” she says. “But, as long as you stick to some basic rules such as making sure you use colors that complement one another … there’s no reason to go wrong.”

For more color tips, visit Northeast Meetings + Events post!

Slanted ceilings have made their way outside of the attic, now in living, dining and bedrooms. Designing under these slopes can be tricky, but there are ways to get around it — and even use them to make the room more elegant and spacious. Here’s how:

1. Light and Airy

Whenever you’re tight on space, adding a coat of white paint to the ceilings and walls can make all the difference. Not only does it add a simple and natural tone, but it’s malleable to design the room to your style. 

 

Photo courtesy of English Blinds

Photo courtesy of Oak Furnitureland

The blank canvas that comes with white walls and ceilings allows for limitless creativity. Create a nautical look for a more relaxed vibe, or add bold colors to make the space stand out. With a white canvas, slanted ceilings can do no harm.

Photo courtesy of Melody Maison

 

2. Lighting the Room

 

Lighting a room can be the most difficult challenge when designing a space under slanted ceilings. Many don’t think they can use any overhead lighting, since the ceiling is on a slope. In reality, however, it isn’t impossible — it’s all a matter of picking the right light fixtures.

 

This is a simple yet elegant style for light fixtures that work perfectly on slanted ceilings. The wires can slightly slightly bend, so that they hang naturally.

 

Another great way to add natural light under slanted ceilings is with skylights. They flood the room with natural light in the daytime and add a unique and stylish look to the space.

 

3. A More Natural Look 

Sometimes, however, it’s better to let the slanted ceilings add a unique design to the room, rather than hide them with an all-white hue. Adding wooden beams can do just the trick. When the ceilings aren’t too low, wooden beams won’t emphasize the height, but add a beautiful finish to the room instead. Light or dark browns for the wooden beams create a beautiful, natural look that goes with any style.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo courtesy of Covet Valley

Photo courtesy of Covet Valley

No matter the lifestyle, wellness and the pursuit to live better has been a rising trend in today’s world. In 2018, Pinterest reported that searches for “self care” were up 140 percent year-over-year, with no mention of stopping. Recently surveyed by national paint brand Sherwin-Williams, homeowners and professional interior designers have also noticed this uptick in wellness and how it affects modern home design and décor. Looking to make your spaces “healthier”? Check out these recent trends to see how you can incorporate wellness into your home styling.

Self-Caring for Your Space

People are taking self-care beyond their body and into interiors. According to the survey, nearly 42 percent of designers say they have been asked to incorporate self-care into their designs. Twenty-nine percent of homeowners also take self-care into consideration when decorating their home. 

The most popular way to bring wellness into a space also happens to be one of the easiest — natural light. Eighty-seven percent of designers use natural light to effortlessly reflect wellness.

 

Photo by Daria Shevtsova

Breathe It In

Improving indoor air quality is key for homeowners and designers looking to make changes. Over 54 percent of homeowners cite air quality as away they bring wellness into their homes, and 58 percent of designers use it as a tool to incorporate wellness. 

Limiting volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, that are released through building materials is one of the best ways to improve air quality. This is done by using lower-VOC paints and other home improvement products that are sustainably sourced and have a low-carbon footprint.

Photo by Anamul Rezwan.

Color

When it comes to color, designers and homeowners do not see eye to eye on their top color choice that represents or stimulates wellness. Nearly 41 percent of designers say that green associates the most with wellness, whereas 34 percent of homeowners believe this color to be blue. Another popular color is white/gray, which 11 percent of designers and 18 percent of homeowners associate with the trend.

The color least likely to be associated with wellness? Red. Not a single designer and only 1 percent of homeowners reported that they associate this hue with wellness.

 

Photo by Pixabay.

Total Zen

In regard to specific spaces that are designed to promote wellness, homeowners different on their choice of which space was the best to achieve “total zen.” The top choices included a gym/fitness room (41 percent), a reading room (41 percent), and a greenhouse (38 percent). These choices differed from designers, who say that the most popular wellness rooms they’ve been asked to design in the past year include a reading room, a sauna/spa, a gym/fitness room, or a meditation room. 

No matter the space, these insights into the wellness trends of today may better help you to find the wellness you crave from the comfort of your own home.

 

Photo by KatjaFiona.

Whether it’s in the form of art displayed on the wall or accents situated on furniture, incorporating warm tones in your home will make it feel calm and cozy. 

Warm tones typically consist of reds, oranges, yellows, browns, and tans. 2019 has been all about being in touch with nature, and these earthy tones keep that trend going. Whether you opt for deep forest browns and berry-red, or desert-inspired terracotta and sand, there are so many ways to make your house feel more like a home.

We are proving just how versatile warm tones can be. You can arrange diverse color palettes to create almost any atmosphere, from bright and lively, to tranquil and welcoming. Here are some looks to explore. 

Photo courtesy of Modish Living

Rustic Style 

Using nature-inspired textures and earthy colors, a rustic feel emphasizes natural beauty. Layer autumnal oranges, browns, reds and creams to create a rustic feel in your home.

A Bold Statement 

Use bolder warm colors, such as bright yellows, oranges and reds, to create a bright and lively space. This Tumeric-colored soft bean bag ottoman forms the perfect bold centerpiece for a group of bean bag chairs.

Photos courtesy of Lujo

Photo courtesy of Viadurini Collezione Notte

A Mix of Warm & Cool

Add a single warm accessory to balance cool neutrals (whites and grays). For example, add a soft brown comforter with natural green accents to an all-white room to keep your space fresh, yet authentic. 

Inspired by Nature 

For a nature-inspired look, incorporate wood-inspired colors. “Wood furniture and surfaces support warm color palettes. To keep the look from going cabin, limit the use of actual wood and incorporate wood-inspired colors,” according to Better Homes & Gardens.

 

Photo courtesy of Essential Home

Photo courtesy of TOM TAILOR

Retro-Inspired

Warm tones can liven up any style, even a retro-inspired interior. Add a pop of bright orange or red to further your look. 

As spring fast approaches, it’s time to rid your home of those dark winter tones — such as browns, blacks and grays — and time to bring in a few bright accents.

From neon yellows to pale pinks, here are a few colors you can use to brighten your home in time for spring.

Yellow

 

Whether it’s the image of sprouting daffodils, the sandy beach or the shining sun, yellow is surely a color that reminds us all of springtime. From carpets and cushions to sofas and tables, these pieces will help you to embrace a pop of yellow just in time for spring.

Photos courtesy of English Blinds

Blue

 

From bedrooms to living areas, both light and dark shades of blues create a calming atmosphere reminiscent of laying on the beach.

Photo courtesy of Covet House

Photo courtesy of Brabbu Design Forces

Woven by artisan weavers in Marrakech, this luxe bohemian home accessory is extremely versatile — use it as a blanket, decorative throw or statement wall hanging.

Teal

 

Teal, a color that has maintained popularity since 2017, pairs nicely with metallics, especially coppers and golds, or leafy prints. From kitchens to cushions, this bright and cheerful color can be used is almost any space.

Left: Photo courtesy of Bohemia Design Limited
Middle: Photo courtesy of Garden Trading
Right: Photo courtesy of AUDENZA

Pink

 

Spring is the perfect season to bring pink accents into your home, whether with wall decor, a new throw pillow or a vase of flowers.

Enjoy Hollywood glamour at its best with this Marilyn velvet armchair in a soft pink cotton velvet. The curvaceous shape of this blush pink armchair offers a touch of chic to your space.

Left: Photo courtesy of TOM TAILOR | Above: Photo courtesy of AUDENZA

Green

 

The bright yet soothing shades of greens, which resemble the spring’s natural outdoors, can help to bring life into any space.

Right photo courtesy of
Sweetpea & Willow

Photo courtesy of DelightFULL

Dark tones are in. Whether in the form of jewel-toned pieces or jet black items, opting for darker tones can add a sense of decadence to your interior.

This trend sees an abundance emeralds, burgundies and blacks being incorporated into homes, often by use of dark furniture, accessories, and wall paint. This sophisticated yet comforting interior trend is perfect for the cozy winter months. But it’s also set to continue as a trend as we go into spring and summer, adding an element of sumptuous to the brighter half of the year. Here are few ways to incorporate dark tones throughout your home this spring. 

COFFEE TABLE

Lautner is a coffee table that stands out for its curved edges, mixing earth-tone colors from the varnished walnut wood and polished brass. Its artisan quality and crafted work provides a striking centerpiece for your living room. It has a moody smoked glass on the top and a shelf at the base that offers additional storage.

Credit of Essential Home

SOFA

Novak is a sofa that combines some details from Mid-Century style with a Contemporary design vision. The base is rectangular, but it has a contrasting low back with rounded shapes, upholstered with a sophisticated leather and finished with piping detail.

Credit of Essential Home

TILE

This beautiful range of glazed brick tiles by Original Style are unique in many ways. The shades are inspired by the English countryside, from the blues of the sea to the earthy greens and warm browns of the English landscapes. Credit of Original Style

SIDEBOARD

The elegant Darian sideboard stands out in any interior. A rich combination of the best materials and irregular shapes blended together with the precise knowledge of the craftsman techniques grant this radiant sideboard, that also offers plenty of storage, timeless aesthetics.

Credit of LUXXU Home

LIGHTING

The Noctis Urchin Cluster Light is comprised of three ebonised Noctis Urchin Pendants. With an elegant, customisable design that invites personalization, each pendant can be suspended at a different height allowing a showstopping configuration to take charge of your space. Credit of Tom Raffield

Nude shades can add warmth and subtle sophistication.

 

Whether it be an accent piece or the color of the whole room, nude tones add subtle warmth to any living space in need of an update. Calming, earthy shades of beige, pale pink and light caramel can set a refreshing tone with barely-there hints of these trendy colors.

Nude shades work particularly well in living rooms and bedrooms, but nude-colored kitchen walls can also set a friendly and inviting vibe in contrast to past trends of gray, black and white. Since most neutral tones pair well together, shades of light pink, brown and even some very light blues can be mixed together to create your ideal wall color.

 

Photo by MADE.com

Photo by MADE.com.

Photo by Sweetpea & Willow.

Photo by MADE.com.

Photo by Chaplin Furniture.

Nude-colored furniture — particularly seating, rugs, and accent pieces — add a touch of understated glamour to a bland room in need of color. These muted shades of beige and pink add a soft pop of vibrance on their own, but can also serve as the backdrop for a more boldly colored accent pillow, curtains or piece of wall art. Try pairing a sand-colored sofa with wine-colored cushions to add depth to your living room.

There is no need to stick to one shade when adding nude colors to a room — try adding a pale pink couch to a room with beige walls, or light caramel ottoman to a linen-colored living room. The variety of hues will make the room more intriguing.

Without creating a convoluted or gaudy aesthetic, nude shades add warmth to spaces that lack personality. Maintaining a clean and chic vibe, they are the ideal interior design choice for a homeowner in search of subtle sophistication.

The Pantone Color Institute has named 2019’s Color of the Year — Living Coral, an animating coral hue with a golden undertone that energizes and enlivens with a softer edge.

 

Vibrant, yet mellow PANTONE Living Coral embraces warmth while providing comfort and buoyancy.

The Color of the Year selection process requires thoughtful consideration.

 

To arrive at the selection each year, Pantone’s color experts at the Pantone Color Institute comb the world in search of new color influences.

Each year, Pantone is influenced by diverse industries — including the entertainment industry and films in production, traveling art collections and new artists, fashion, all areas of design, popular travel destinations, as well as new lifestyles, playstyles, and socio-economic conditions. 

 

Influences may also stem from new technologies, materials, textures, and effects that impact color, relevant social media platforms and even upcoming sporting events that capture worldwide attention.

In turn, the Color of the Year has influenced product development and purchasing decisions across industries for 20 years — from fashion, home furnishings, and industrial design, to product, packaging, and graphic design.

 

This year, PANTONE Living Coral will embody a sociable and spirited energy, encouraging light-hearted activity and symbolizing our need for optimism and joyful pursuits.

Artist Concetta Antico sees the world in 100 million colors.

Concetta Antico sits down for lunch at a local cafe, after settling on smoked salmon and a strawberry salad. Before eating, she takes a moment to acknowledge the array of color in front of her: the blue-violet of the salmon, the thousands of reds bouncing around the strawberry and the light turquoise surrounding the seeds. “I promise you, I am not high!” she says, “I just truly see what I am looking at.”  

Super Vision Mutation  12 X 16

Persephones Peacock in the Garden of Paradise   8 X 36

Better known as “The Color Queen,” Antico sees pinks, blues and violets in the green grass, an array of colors glistening off the white snow, and hundreds upon hundreds of colors within a rainbow. And they’re not just a figment of her imagination: her rare, genetic gift of heightened sight allows her to see almost 100 million more colors than what meets the average human eye. 

In addition to being an artist, teacher, and color consultant, Antico is what scientists call a “tetrachromat,” meaning Antico’s eyes contain a rare genotype that provides a fourth receptor as opposed to the usual three, more common in women than men. With this, Antico’s tetrachromatic potential reaches up to 100 million colors, 10 times more than the average 1 million.

For now, Antico is the only authenticated tetrachromat artist on Earth, with 1,000 internationally acclaimed pieces of art and features in Reader’s Digest, Vogue, New York Magazine, and more.

Antico is originally from Australia, and was drawn toward art and color at a very young age. At age 8, her mother recognized her potential to become a famous artist, constantly showing support for Antico’s art. At age 16, she left home to cope with her mother’s passing, winding up in Los Angeles.

“I am a bit of an adventurer,” she says, “Sydney got too small for me. I was heading to work in Canada, I stopped in L.A., and it entranced me.”

Despite her hardships, she always kept her deep passion for art at the forefront of her life and career. Antico knew she was meant to paint professionally, and so she began teaching in San Diego, ultimately instructing 25,000 budding artists in oil painting.

Artist Concetta Antico works on a piece named Iridescent Eyes… Charlie The Peacock   18 X 36

“Oil painting makes you healthier, and if we surround ourselves with beauty and happy spirits, we will be in a constant state of color euphoria.”

While teaching, Antico would point out the colors she sees in everyday objects and receive mixed reactions from her students. She says, “My students would tell me, ‘We don’t see that color that you see!’ I’d be confused, but then I educated my students to see a little more color.”

It wasn’t until a buyer of Antico’s, who happened to be a scientist, realized Antico could be a tetrachromat. Then, she began to understand her ability to see millions of colors. “I always thought I was different and unique,” says Antico. “The way I do things, what compels me, the way I painted … I didn’t realize that I could see and create colors like a computer.”

In late 2012, Antico was evaluated both genetically and behaviorally by Jay Neitz, Ph.D., a world-renowned leader in color vision. She soon discovered she was in fact a tetrachromat, and possessed an incredible genetic gift that affects only 2 to 3 percent of the world’s population.

Who’s Your Genie   10 X 14

“It was just another part of the uniqueness of Concetta,” she says. “The gift is made up of my mother, her vision for me, how she put red and blue lights in the swimming pool to make lilac light, my high school that was big on art, my genetics, my brain, and my own passion, ambition and drive.”

Today, Antico wants to use her gift to make the world a better place, truly treasuring the world around her. In an interview with Stanford University, Antico said that, “enhanced color created enhanced joy.” She is constantly happy and joyful, happy to wake up and see trees and sun.

Reflecting Pool of Narcissistic Love-Vaucluse House-Sydney   30 X 36

“Oil painting makes you healthier, and if we surround ourselves with beauty and happy spirits, we will be in a constant state of color euphoria,” she says. “My gift makes me so excited to paint, look, share. Color has made me joyful, and has only enhanced my life. There are no disadvantages to beauty and color.”

Antico has a wide range of muses, as she aims to paint whatever captivates and moves her. Her paintings are divided into two categories: “earthly delights,” which encompasses everything on earth that she paints, and “otherworldly wonders,” which includes galaxies, magic and more. She often leans toward the ethereal subjects such as mystic skies and otherworldly galaxies. “Not people, though. We’re just not that attractive,” she jokes.

For those with normal sight, a place like a grocery store or a highway are simply as they seem. But for Antico, she is able to see past the veil and see further into the typical. “I’m captivated with the sky and trees beyond the freeway. I’m hyper-focused on beauty around me.” Sunsets, for example, are a religious experience for Antico, with the amount of splendor and color that they produce. “I am very blessed. I wake up every day and am so elated to see what I see and do what I do,” she says.

One of Antico’s main beliefs is that everyone has gifts, not just her, and that they should all be used to better our world. “Media can be dark, and we need light,” she says. “I want to use my platform for that. I have a place as ‘The Color Queen,’ and I feel that I can make people see their worlds differently.”

Conjuring Crystal Ball Colors    18 X 24

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