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Color

  • HOW TO INTRODUCE COLOUR

    One of our main goals at Hibou Design & Co is to create a design that is timeless. Our idea of a timeless design is to design a space with a neutral colour palette. However, we always like to incorporate colour in a way that isn’t too overwhelming. We notice that some of our clients are scared of colour. Will it be too much? What if I don’t like it? So, we decided to list some of the ways we like to incorporate colour into our designs.

     

    1. A rug - an easy way to incorporate a colourful pattern or detail.

    (“Parade Home” by Studio McGee.)


    We love how Studio Mcgee incorporated this beautiful blue patterned rug in this very neutral colour palette. It definitely is bright and airy with the perfect combination of colour in her accessories.

    2. Accessories - The perfect, non-permanent way to bring in your pop of colour. You can have one accent colour or a grouping of several. These can be from pillows, to throws, and a variety of small objects.

    (“Project Impressed” by Jacquelyn Clark.)

    The perfect example by Jacquelyn Clark of how to accessorize your space with different shades of the same colour and have it tie within two spaces!

    3.Art - Let your colour take charge and create a conversation starter with one of your favourite pieces or if you're not bold enough, start with muted colours to incorporate your desired colour.

    (“Olympic Drive” by Hibou Design & Co.)

     

  • OUR TOP RUNNERS

    We're just shopping runners for an all-white bathroom renovation project. We need something to make a pop in there and a runner would be the perfect addition. Here are our top 5! What would you choose?

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  • OUR GO-TO WHITES

    We can't tell you how many times we've walked into a home where the trim was painted pure white, the kind of white where they didn't even bother adding colour to the can. I cringe just thinking about it.

    Although many may think that white is white, choosing the perfect hue of white is difficult since each shade has a subtle undertone to it, making it harder to see with the naked eye. However, once compared amongst each other, the evident undertones appear and the decision making comes to play.

    White should be chosen with caution, taking into consideration all of the other fixed finishes in the home, however here are a few of our go-to whites to help narrow down your process.

     

    SIMPLY WHITE OC-117

    Simply White was Benjamin’s Moore color of the year in 2016 and we understand why. It is one of our favorites because it is fresh and bright. It’s subtle warm yellow undertone, makes it a warmer, more appealing white. We typically use this color for our kitchen cabinetry and walls. This would probably be the whitest white that we would put on walls before the walls start to look too stark or sterile. 

     

     

    CHANTILLY LACE OC-65

    If you’re looking for a pure, bright white, Chantilly Lace is the one for you! It is best used for trim, frames, doors, mouldings and also kitchen cabinetry. Considering this color is the closest to a stark white, it will never look unclean in comparison to other whites. Chantilly Lace falls under the category of cool whites, due to its slightest blue undertone. 

      

      

    CLOUD WHITE CC-40

    Cloud white is loved by many designers because of its warm undertone that makes it a creamy white. However, if placed in the room as being the only white, it looks like a pure white. Cloud white needs to be used with caution when paired with crisper whites. It can very easily look too creamy. This is a great white when paired with more muted colours or neutrals with warmer tones.

     

     

    INTENSE WHITE OC-51

    Intense white appears slightly grey. It’s green undertone balances the warmth making it a great choice to use throughout an entire space. It gives off the perfect contrast paired with Simply White or Chantilly Lace trim. This is not however a colour we would use on trim. Albeit the name suggests it is a white, we would probably categorize Intense White as a very light grey.

    This feature wall is a combination of Intense White & Simply White, which really shows you how greay it is.

      

    In this example, the Intense White walls actually look white next to the concrete grey ceiling and lack of white trim. If you spot the baseboards, that's where you can see that the walls are in fact light grey. 

     

    THINGS TO CONSIDER;

    • Sample Viewing - Get a larger sample of your colour swatch! It is very important to see a larger scale of your color to help understand their undertones. We use 11" x 14" large painted colour samples that make identifying undertones simple and almost obvious - even to our clients who have no experience with colour.

    • Natural Light - Colours can vary immensely from room to room. Therefore, knowing which direction your room is facing can either pull out a warmer (south side) or cooler light (north side). This can play on how evident the undertone will be once painted.

    • Finishes - Make sure you pick the proper finish for your paint colors. Eggshell walls for a matt look, but somewhat washable. Doors, frames, and mouldings should be painted semi-gloss for dirability and washability. Finally, ceiling should be painted matte since matte hides most imperfections and will give you a seamless surface. 

    • All white everything - If your walls and trim are white, the idea is either to go one shade brighter on the trim to create some contrast or to keep the same colour throughout, however still in different finishes.

      

    Understanding and identifying undertones is important to create a clear flow within your home. Choosing colour can be extremely stressful - I get it - which is why hiring a True Colour Expert will give you the confidence you need when picking out the right colors for any space. If you are lacking confidence, we highly suggest to consult our website's colour page and ask for our expertise to guide you every step of the way !

    By: Melinda Recine

  • INTRODUCING QUEBEC'S SECOND TRUE COLOUR EXPERT

    The only two Maria Killam certified True Colour Experts in Quebec are officially now under one roof!

     

    Our one and only Korina Khamis recently completed her training in Toronto where she had the pleasure of spending three days surrounded by colour and colourful people. This training is pretty intensive with lots of material to cover considering the many layers involved in choosing the perfect paint colour.

     

    How do you, as a client, benefit from hiring a True Colour Expert?

     

    Over the course of our training, we've developed our ability to understand and to clearly identify undertones, which is the main reason most people get colour wrong - this includes design professionals. Although most designers feel confident playing with general colour, when it comes to choosing the perfect wall colour out of the thousands of available options, there is often doubt and fear of making a mistake. The sheer number of designers who attend Maria's courses throughout North America is an attestation to that fact. 

      

    Through this training we've also honed our colour vocabulary to be able to clearly communicate the best colour choices to our clients. It's so important for our clients to understand why we chose a specific colour for their walls, we don't expect anyone to trust us blindly. If we aren't able to communicate, in simple terms, why the paint colour we've chosen is perfect, then we probably don't know why it is - which means it might be wrong.

     

    Lastly, by using Maria Killam's large paint samples, we're able to confidently demonstrate to our clients that we've made the right decision - and they're actually able to see it. After using larger samples for the last two years, we don't know how we ever got through a consultation without them. With these 11"x14" hand painted boards, our clients are actually able to see what we're talking about when we say "That grey is too pink." or "That white is too yellow." 

    Click here for more information about our colour consultations or contact us today to book your consultation.

  • THE FRAME DEBATE

    What's the deal with white window frames? I'm not talking about trim (this time), I'm talking about the actual frame. The one that gets installed with your actual window. For years the standard has been white on both the inside and out. Now people are following trends and deciding to go with black on the outside but they still insist on keeping the inside white. In fact, some people are actually paying more to have both colours; black on the outside and white on the inside.

    Let me tell you what my problem is with white frames. First, and foremost, it's totally the wrong white. All of the standard white aluminum windows and doors are this horrible, super stark white with a tint of blue. I say tint, but really, I mean that they are blue-white. As soon as the trim is painted a decent white; Cloud White, Chantilly Lace, or even (my favourite) Simply White, you will see that most window frames are really a very light shade of blue. It's terrible. 

    If this isn't a reason enough, did you know that black frames actually give you a better view? That's right folks, blacks frames are less distracting, therefore they take away less from your incredible, lush, green view. Where as white demands all of your attention, which completely cuts your beautiful view.

     

     

    Here's the biggest question I get when I'm trying to convince a client (who's about to spend a ton of money on new windows) to go with black frames;

    What colour will I paint my trim?

    Easy! Either something to blend in with the black frame or something to blend in with your wall. Black frames with black or dark trim looks great. Black frames with off white trim and an off white wall also looks great. Black frames with white trim and dark wall doesn't look so great. The idea here is not to have too many contrasting colours next to each other.

     

     

     

     

     

    Can't decide? Skip the trim all together. Black window frames look best without trim. Whether your space is ultra modern or traditional, this is truly the best option!

     

     

     

     

    If you're still indecisive or if I've confused you any more, give me a call to schedule a colour consultation. I'll be happy to not only help you choose the right colours for your home, but to explain why they're the best choices too!

  • BLACK IS BACK

    I'm sure a trend that all of you have noticed pop up in hardware and plumbing fixtures is gold and brass. Would you believe me if I told you that black is already creeping up on gold for the number one spot on the hottest trend list? Mat black to be precise. We're seeing it everywhere; in decor details, on furniture, in the way we frame art and accessories. A room is never complete without at least a little of the darkest on the colour scale. 

     

     

     
     

    I have to say I'm quite excited about this and I'm all for putting the sensible me aside and jumping all over this trend! First of all, let me make myself clear (if you haven't caught on already), this IS a trend and with all trends, this WILL eventually fade. However, that does not mean that we can't have a little fun with this one. Hardware is tricky because you would usually find similar coloured hardware throughout your entire home; your door knobs, cabinet pulls, plumbing fixtures, light fixtures. They probably all match. Which means that when they go out of style, they ALL go out of style together which can be quite costly to change. Costly but not difficult. Which is why we can totally still have fun with this one!

     

     
    These aren't quite black but pretty beautiful if you ask me!

      

    On a side note, I don't believe that your hardware all does have to be identical. I have no problem mixing black knobs with brushed nickel light fixtures. Or mat black and brass! Really? Who has a problem with that??

     
     
     
     

    I'm going to give you a little tip: this trend looks absolutely fabulous with white and lots of it. As you can imagine, having too much black in a space can get dark really fast which is why it should really only be used as an accent and in moderation. Unless you're designing something like a night club, or a bar, or a vampire's room. Whatever floats your boat.

     
    Are you with me on this one? Are you loving this trend or not so much? Leave us your feedback, we'd love to know what you think!
  • 2015 INTERIOR COLOUR TRENDS

    As always with the start of a new year, it seems like everyone has something to say about the year's upcoming trends. With colour being such a huge factor that plays into everything design related, we all want to know what direction it'll be heading. After Pantone released their 2015 colour of the year,  I was a little surprised by the choice but not shocked that we are moving towards warmer tones.

    I find Montreal to be a very avant-garde city where we adapt very easily to change and we embrace it with open arms, no matter how drastic. We quickly turned the page on yellow-beiges and browns over ten years ago while some cities in the States are still in the process of making the transition to the cooler grays. Unlike our neighbours in Toronto who tend to keep it classic, we're open to bold pops of colour, crazy patterns and everything trendy. This wallpaper will be rarely seen in an upscale home in Toronto, yet it's probably a great seller here in Montreal. 

    With our modern lofts popping up all over downtown and its vicinity, it's not unusual to see bold pops of colour in their lobbies and common spaces.

    This shows that we are among the first to embrace a new trend and also the first to get sick of an old one. Looking ahead, colour forecasters are saying that we are moving towards the warmer tones inspired by nature and I'm truly not surprised. In this city, we jumped from the beiges to the cool grays so fast that now everyone is finding gray too cold, too industrial so we're already leaning more towards "greige", taupes and warmers grays. I don't at all think that we will be bringing back the beiges and browns of the 90s but we're definitely going to be seeing our current favorite neutral evolving soon.

    In a world where being green is so important and everything organic and natural is spreading like wildfire, who has room for industrial grays? It just doesn't seem to match. When aviation was in its prime, it inspired the streamline Art Deco design style of the 1920s, 30s and 40s and that's what's going to happen again. Trends are dictated by what's happening in our communities, and what's making headlines globally. Right now we are going back to basics, we are more interested in the old than the new. Eclecticism is trending where we recycle, reuse and mix and match with little rules. Check out my blog on Wabi Sabi which is a Japanese philosophy that's looking very trendy these days.

    Projects and movements making a small environmental impact and a big statement are huge trend influencers. Eco friendly travel, including developments like the Mashpi Project, are proof that the need to connect to nature is there and probably stronger than ever. This need was born from the advancements of our society, technology, industrialism and the lack of nature in our surroundings.

    Let's bring nature back! We will soon see the return of florals, and although some people may think that this would be going back in time, it's not quite done in the same way as what we saw in 80s.

     

    Natural finishes and raw material are here to stay (for a while I guess). Seeing the grain in wood, lightly stained pieces and simple scandinavian design are all big in 2015.

    Layering different textures and materials and mixing bold colours and patterns are also among styles that I look forward to seeing.

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  • I'M KIND OF DIGGING BLACK KITCHENS

    I NEVER thought that IKEA would ever inspire me, but I have to admit that it's what opened my eyes to black kitchens. If you scroll down just a bit to my previous post, you will see that IKEA is coming out with a new line on February 2nd that includes a true black finish. Well, I have to say that I kind of fell in love with the idea of a black kitchen from their photos. This is a shocker since I'm usually drawn to whites or pale blue-greys, but I truly believe that black (when done right) can be just as timeless.

    Here are some of my favourites that I found on Houzz. You will notice that a black kitchen does really well with some bling; pretty hardware, a luxurious stone counter, glamorous lighting. 

    I do think that this particular style has to work with the architecture of your home and that it would look best in a space with high ceilings and good natural light. I'd also love to carry the black throughout the home on all doors and trim.

  • GREY KITCHENS: TRENDY OR TIMELESS?

    If you subscribe to any design blogs, browse Houzz or even Pinterest, you have surely noticed grey kitchens popping up everywhere, and most of them are hard not to like. As they are quickly becoming a new favorite, I start to wonder if this is just the next big trend. I'll never say that grey is timeless simply because we see it everywhere and it's really just the current replacement for beige. However, it does make for a fantastic neutral backdrop, which makes for a perfect cabinet colour. 

    Do I think that you will love your grey kitchen in 5-10 years? That all depends on if you do it right. As in a living room, or bedroom, if you decide to go grey everywhere, then the answer is no, you will not love your trendy space in 5-10 years. If, however, you use grey for it's best quality, as the perfect backdrop to other colours, than yes, your kitchen can be timeless. A grey cabinet paired with a marble countertop and a white backsplash with pretty hardware, how can you go wrong? A grey cabinet with grey walls, a grey backsplash and a gray tile is wrong. That's when you can look back to the pink and avocado bathrooms of the 60s and imagine what your kitchen will look like in 10 years.

    Here are some great examples of grey kitchens done right. You will notice that what a lot of them have in common is the use of a warm grey, beautiful upscale cabinet profiles, pretty hardware and wood flooring. They don't lack style. Even the last image of the shaker cabinet and simply hardware has a clear country theme with its panelled backsplash, wood countertop and raw floors. Don't let grey be the star of the show, and you're off to a great start.

    Grey is not an easy colour. Choosing the right grey can be tricky because of different undertones that you may not see until presented large scale in the right light. If you need help choosing the right grey, contact us to book a colour consultation.

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  • ANNE'S FUN & FEMININE SMALL SPACE

    I had the pleasure of working with an old client/friend this week while styling her home for a much overdue photo shoot. This project was completed 3 or 4 years ago and I just recently got the push to have it photographed after the Montreal Gazette asked me for pictures for an article about small spaces. We worked with photographer, Telly Goumas who made this interior shine on a very foggy Sunday afternoon.

    What made this project so special was the 600 sq. ft. space and the fact that Anne and I shared similar taste in interiors. This loft in the old port featured high ceilings with exposed wood beams, original steel columns and historic floor to ceiling windows that really gave it some real Old Montreal charm. To give you a little background about the person occupying this wonderful home, Anne is a 28 year old ambitious social butterfly. Her place needed to be equally as comfortable for her living alone, as well as when entertaining. She's bubbly, friendly and full of personality but my favourite part about working with Anne was that she was not afraid to use colour - and that we did!

    Given the fact that we were working with such a small space, we incorporated several features to enhance storage and create intimacy while still providing an open area for entertaining. We tore down an existing wall in the kitchen to create a bar height counter, hid some useful storage in the banquette and used functional poufs and side tables that can double as extra seating. There's something about having a bed where you will be hosting parties that just doesn't work, which is why we opted for a murphy bed. Four years later, Anne still loves her bed and yes - it's very comfortable. 

    All of these details make Anne's cozy loft her perfect hangout, whether lounging alone or entertaining a party of 12.

    For before pictures, click here.

  • SIDIM HIGHLIGHT: WHIMSICAL MASTERPIECES

    My big highlight from this year's SIDIM was this wonderful gem of an artist that I completely fell for. Her name is Virginie Mazureau and she specializes in whimsical art that incorporates several different techniques. As you will see below, she has a very particular style that seams to capture the creative imagination of a child. My wonderful fiance and I loved her work so much that we purchased one of her prints. 

    Here were a few of my favourites. As stunning as they are on screen, they don't measure up to the effect they have in person. These large scale originals are truly priceless, marvellously creative and highly detailed.

    This is the piece that captivated us and begged us to take it home.

  • QUEBEC'S ONLY TRUE COLOUR EXPERT

    I just completed Maria Killam's True Colour Expert training in Toronto and I'm proud to announce that I'm Quebec's first and only True Colour Expert. The last three days have been an intensive and detailed overview of interior colours and undertones. Maria is truly a genius when it comes to her business model and for having created a system for understanding undertones.  

    I had had an incredible time being immersed in colour for three full days but what also made the experience were all of the other professionals that I got to network with and bounce ideas off of. 

    I'm catching my flight back to Montreal tonight and I'm ready and eager to put the knowledge I've acquired to use. 

    I've been advertising my colour consultation spring special until June 20, 2014 and I will still honor the $150 special until then. This is a great opportunity to take advantage of this rate before my prices increase. Book your consultation today

  • EVERYONE SHOULD HAVE AT LEAST ONE OF THESE IN THEIR HOME

    There are some pieces I own that I am so greatful for. This is one of those pieces that I think everyone should have at least one of in their home. The ever so versatile round side table. This one is mine, passed down from my grandmother that has so far had at least 3 purposes throughout it's lifetime. 

    It can be a simple side table used to fill a corner as seen here or on the side of a couch. It can also be used as a night table, or as an entrance table to fill in an otherwise useless space with a pretty vase in the center. I've even used it as a desk. It's the perfect height, it looks great from all angles and will pretty much fit into any room serving a different purpose.

    Here are some more examples:

    In the bedroom:

    Living room side table:

    The entrance centerpiece:

    Office tete-a-tete:
  • THE BIGGEST MISTAKE MADE WHEN CHOOSING PAINT COLOURS

    This month is going to be all about colour because I just signed up to Maria Killam's True Colour Expert Training in Toronto next month and I've got colour on my mind.

    I give tons of colour consultations and the biggest mistake made when choosing colours is the timing. During a construction, renovation or move, the ideal time to paint is before construction is over, while the construction team is obviously still working on your place, right? This means it's before any of the furniture is in, sometimes before the floor is even in which means the kitchen is not installed yet, the countertop is not there, the backsplash probably hasn't been chosen yet and the client is open to any suggestions I give them.

    At this stage, I can give you ANY colour in the world and it will look fine because we have nothing to match it to. As I've mentioned before, in order to really see a colour, we must compare it to other colours, including everything that will be next to it in the same room. Furthermore, you have far more options for paint colours than you do for your tiles, cabinets, backsplash and furniture. So really the best time to choose the colour for the walls is when the floors are in, the kitchen is installed and your furniture is delivered.

    The problem we face, is that once everything is done is obviously not the most convenient time to start painting. The result for most is choosing a paint colour blindly. Of course, the choice can be made off of samples. So there's solution number one: choose you floors, tiles, cabinetry and backsplash BEFORE the paint colour; if we have samples of all of the permanent finishes, we can confidently choose the appropriate paint colour. 

    However, you still probably haven't started shopping for furniture or even thought about furniture at this stage yet.  Usually, after leaving a client's place who only wanted a colour consultation, I am confident that the paint colour will be beautiful with the kitchen finishes, but still hoping that the client will then choose their furniture based on their wall colour... which is kind of crazy.

    Think about it.

    After weeks of shopping, you may only fall in love with one couch, and that couch only comes in 4 different fabrics. Now what? You have 4 different fabrics to choose from to go with your paint colour or you could have had thousands of paint colours to choose from to go with your couch. It's kind of obvious that we are doing things backwards here.

    So what's the solution?

    I've had to struggle with this one for a while because I can't control when a client calls me and how far into their renovation it is. The only solution that I can come up with is to plan your construction like and interior designer would. Don't wait until your contractor tells you what he needs next to proceed. Create a concept for your space from the beginning, choose everything even before construction begins, shop furniture as early into the renovation/construction/move as possible. Create a mood board, have a plan, an idea, finishes selected and furniture options. Just don't choose your paint colours blindly because you will be limiting yourself at the next step, when it's time to shop furniture.

    If you are planning on hiring a designer, this is another reason why it is so important to involve your designer as early into the process as possible.

    This is a great example; do you think they were able to choose the paint colour before the curtain, fireplace brick and furniture? Definitely not! (for the record, I think a few things are off about this room, but nonetheless a great example)

    I'm curious to know if anyone else has struggled with this problem and if you have come up with any other solutions, tips or tricks?

    I just really like the colours in this picture below:

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  • WHY CHOOSING THE WRONG COLOUR CAN RUIN EVERYTHING

    I've written quite a few blogs about colour, I even have a whole page dedicated to it on my website. Here I am, again, stressing the importance of knowing how to choose the right colour. No matter how much advice I give you on this blog about which tiles will work best on your backsplash or which shower curtain to choose for your bathroom, if you puchase the right item in the wrong colour, you will forever be disappointed. This is why colour is so important! 

    So how do you choose the right paint colour? The right tiles for your floor, backsplash or bathroom wall? The best advice I can give you is to COMPARE!

    I've said this before but cannot stress it enough: colours only really appear when you start comparing them to one another. It's impossible to shop your backsplash without having a sample of both the cabinet and the countertop. All because it's very hard to see a pink undertone until you put it next to a yellow one. Looking at a colour alone is completely deceiving, even to my trained eye. The difference is that I know what to look for and I know exactly what to compare the colour to to see what undertones will come through once installed. For someone who doesn't do this everyday, it's going to take a lot of comparing for you to figure that out, but it's worth it.

    I'm really excentuating this because this is what I go through with every one of my colour consultations. A client sees a colour that they think they like. They're so confident that they're ready to commit to it until I show them what it looks like next to another colour. All of a sudden, they feel that the colour changed and we must be looking at the wrong sample. This applies to paint, and EVERY other finish you are planning on installing in your home.

    You may think that you're taking the easy road going neutrals with either all white, all grey, or all beige. Well you're definitely not. There are all kinds of undertones in these neutral colours which probably makes it even harder than designing a monochromatic pink colour scheme.

    My intention is not to scare you or push you to hire me as a colour consultant. My intention here is to make sure that you don't make the most common mistake in decorating. When you are completely sure about a colour, take it and compare it to every other piece in the room before confirming it. It's also probably best to do that both in daylight and at night. And once you are completely certain that by painting your walls, you won't make your countertop look yellow, your floor look dirty and your walls look pink, then buy a small sample of the paint colour you chose, paint a big part of one wall and see what it looks like when it dries.

    I wish you all good luck during this spring painting season! If you are however, still unsure and would like to seak professional advice, please contact me to book a colour consultation.

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  • HOME OFFICE IKEA HACK

    I'm really not a big fan of IKEA, I'm also really not big on DIY's, so a post like this is sure to be rare... Sometimes, however, like when you're moving to a new place with a list of rooms to fill - it can be the perfect solution for your wallet. Behold my new home office! I put this room together with a chair that was passed down from my grandmother that was reupholstered in my favorite color and two signature IKEA pieces. The first being the well know EXPEDIT shelving unit - now available in grey high gloss lacquer. The second being my big DIY. I purchased a solid, plain melamine desk top and 4 sculpted grey legs and I covered the desk top in a fun colorful fabric. Et voila! My perfect, fun, colorful office that I love to run to every morning in my pjs ;)

  • WHY IS ALL TRIM WHITE???

    Over the last five years I've been a strong supporter of white trim (or a close alternative). Trim being base boards, moldings, window frames and sometimes doors. It's clean. It's simple. It can be carried throughout an entire house regardless of the room colour. It's an easy go to colour for the majority of my colour consultations. It's also being done by almost every other designer, contractor, homeowner so it's almost the expected colour for trim. 

    That being said, I cannot wait until this changes. I'm so sick of seeing the same super strong contrast between the trim and the wall colour over and over and over. Yes, the goal is to excentuate the trim which is usually a key feature of the architecture of a home, but why not get creative and excentuate it in a different way?

  • COMPLEX BLUES

    Did you know that blue is the most favourited colour on the colour wheel? This makes it a very popular choice for paint. Have you ever painted a room blue only to realize that you now have what looks like a baby boy's room? It happens often when choosing a light blue color for walls. In fact, choosing the right blue can be almost as difficult as choosing the perfect beige. There's a fine line between an elegant, cool, calming blue and a new born's nursery colour.

    Here are just a couple of tips to consider when looking for the right blue.

    My first rule of thumb is darker blues are easier to choose. Although navy can seem like a scary wall colour, it's very easily pulled off as you can see in these beautiful navy spaces. It's more elegant and mature that the lighter version of this beautiful colour. And let me tell you, it's a lot easier to choose a navy than a baby blue but it's not every day that you want a navy room.

    With the current grey trend, the easiest cheat is to go with a grey blue. By adding that touch of grey, you will attain a more sophisticated look.

    Gray Wisp by Benjamin Moore is a balance grey blue (with a touch of green) that I've used successfully many times. At first, it may look dull or you may see too much gray, but once applied on the wall, it definitely looks blue. DEFINITELY! Sometimes it's hard to imagine, but large scale, even the slightest undertones come out and Gray Wisp has a strong blue undertone, with a touch of green.

    Here's an example of a space I used this color in, just in case you still can't imagine it.

    Here's another good example of a nice grey blue that works really well in the space:

    If you love colour and are comfortable with lots of it on your walls and want to go bright, that's fine too. Just make sure your walls are not the brightest colour in the room. This rule actually applies to most colours. If you have bright blue walls next to taupes and beiges, the bright, clean colour can make everything else in the room look dull and dirty. The idea is for your wall colour to make everything in the room look it's best, not steal all of the attention.

    I learned this lesson the hard way in my first apartment when I painted my living room bright yellow. I absolutely loved the color but it make my warm grey couch look dirty and I couldn't find any other colour bright enough to pull it all together for my accessories. I had to stick to white because it was the only colour that was able to compete with my yellow walls.

    Here's a great example of how the bright blue wall make the counter look dirty and the cabinets look dull:

    This post really just covers the tip of the blue iceberg, I can go on and on about what to look for when choosing color. It's important to take into consideration the colors that will be in the space as well. The furniture undertones, the curtains. This can all affect the color of your walls and vice versa. I'm hoping  these tips will help. If not, for a personlized color consultation in your home or online, visit our Color Consultation page for more details.

  • COLOR TREND: NAVY

    I've been hearing rumors that the next big color trend is navy. I'm not even sure if I can call this a trend considering how timeless the color is, but the beautiful, classic neutral is definitely making its comeback. I've already jumped the gun and designed a couple stunning living rooms around this rich color.

    Navy is extremely versatile. It's gorgeous as velvets, mixed with whites or yellows and as a wall color, it creates an incredibly dramatic, yet cozy effect. It can be used as an accent color or even as the common neutral throughout an entire home.

  • CHOOSING CONDO FINISHES? CONSIDER A DESIGNER

    Montreal is in the midst of a big condo boom and when buying a brand new property, there's the advantage of choosing all of the unit's finishes. Home buyers, especially first home buyers, are finding this process very long and difficult. These exciting decisions are more challenging than they initially appear and are crucial. I've been working with a lot of clients lately helping them choose the right cabinetry, flooring, countertops, handles, and paint colors. With all of the other decisions that need to be made when purchasing a new property, choosing the finishes can sometimes be the least of your concerns. Which is why out of all of the consultations I give, I feel that these are very rewarding and worth every penny. All of my projects are, of course, extremely rewarding but I feel like any consultation involving color is very educational for my client and these consultations allow them to make overall better decisions when considering the color of anything that they add to their existing palette.

    By using a designer to help guide you in making the right choices, you save a lot of time and you gain peace of mind. Some clients spend hours trying to choose the right tones amongst the dozens of small samples offered and then go back to the developer to make changes after sleepless nights doubting their decisions. A good designer will reduced these consultations down to a quarter of the time. And a good designer will explain why the colors chosen work best with each other and with the look you want to achieve. With that knowledge, you will be confident about the choices made, which will give you peace of mind.

    If you want to tackle this task on your own, have an eye for color and are a visual person that knows what they want, take these tips into consideration during your appointment with the developer.

    • Always consider the undertones of a color. A yellow brown floor will not look good against wood cabinetry with a pink undertone. Click here for why undertones are so important.
    • Think about the furniture you will be keeping and consider colors that will make your furniture look its best.
    • Anything ultra modern or trendy may not be the best option for resale. Think about how long you are planning on living at this location and whether or not your selections will please different tastes.
    • Sometimes upgrades with the developer will cost you more than having it done yourself after you move in. Ex.: countertop upgrades, electrical, plumbing fixtures. Always get a quote from your developer and shop around.
    • Don't overlook important details like the direction of the tiles in the bathroom or the placement of the lightswitches. Always ask if there's anything other than the obvious that you have the option to change, the doors, moldings, doorknobs. It's all in the details, so be specific.
    • Bring images of spaces you like. Sometimes it gets overwhelming with so many options, you may need to remind yourself what it is that you wanted when you walked in. Houzz is a great website to collect pictures that inspire you.
    • Take pictures of your final choices and color codes if available. This will be helpful when trying to match custom shelves to your bathroom vanity or when you want to choose the blinds that will look good against your window frames or floors.
    • Take your time and do it right the first time. Sometimes it's not easy to get a second appointment with the developer to change the choices already made.

    When building a new house, there is more flexibility in the design details and it's best if you schedule the appointment with your designer sooner rather than later. To read more on how you can benefit from this, click here.

  • JUST FELL IN LOVE

    Just discovered a pretty cool website hosted by a color designer who definitely has a great eye for it. Design Seeds allows you to browse or find a specific color palette based on one color of your choice. Jessica has not only put together a beautiful website, she also has a fantastic blog and a really well organized Pinterest.

Meet the ladies behind Hibou Design & Co!

As interior designers, decorators and colour specialists, we're constantly surrounded by beauty. This is our place to rant, rave and share our knowledge with you. 

Check out our bios for more about us!

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Houzz

Eugenia Triandos in Laval, QC on Houzz
Eugenia Triandos in Laval, QC on Houzz
Eugenia Triandos in Laval, QC on Houzz
Eugenia Triandos in Laval, QC on Houzz
Eugenia Triandos in Laval, QC on Houzz
Eugenia Triandos in Laval, QC on Houzz