Color says so much about the mood of everything that happens 在设计. Whether the space is commercial or residential, color sets the tone. For new construction projects, the color palette starts when you are specifying 设计中的硬材料. For projects where you are working around existing hardscapes like cabinetry or tile that a client may want to keep, we will work to complement those materials 与 paint and accents.

Paint and Color is One of Our Design Pillars

I love paint because it is timeless – not always the color, but paint is timeless in the sense that it can easily be updated. 不像 wallpaper, which is awesome and fun, where patterns follow trends and will 快速约会. With paint, it is so easy to manipulate how you want it 去感受这个空间.

Paint is a design foundation for me and helps us keep things cohesive, because it provides a natural process of elimination.


在 90s I had a business called “Alison Smith Decorate 用你自己的内饰.” When I would meet 与 clients for consultations, I would note that there was often no sense of continuity in terms of color. I would say, “Listen, I can rearrange all your furniture and maybe add a sofa or whatnot and make it look right, but really I feel like to tie all this together and what would make sense is if you had a fundamental paint palette to 真的让一切都在歌唱.”

As this became a consistent need, I developed Allison Smith Color Seasons, which was a line of 64 colors that were combined in predetermined color palettes so people could easily guide their own way through 选择过程.

We all have colors that look best on us, or make us feel good, and I seek to use that in my projects.


Whether you are starting a new construction or simply remodeling a current space, its important that you get all your materials specified before you choose paint colors. 要找到一个 perfect tile that goes 与 your chosen paint color than it is to manipulate 材料周围的油漆.

  1. 从基础设施. 首先,您需要选择 things like 地板, tile and cabinetry. 在视频中的一个例子中, we started 与 a very neutral tile 地板.
  2. 确定你的主导色彩. 在 commercial example in the video, our predominant color was the neutral tile 地板. Everything else needed to play well 与 that color. 每一个颜色 调色板需要一个中性色来构建. Neutrals are often white, black, gray or 被晒黑的.
  3. 决定要突出的色调/颜色. 有可能 be some things you want to bring out or highlight, or some things that you 宁愿减少. In our “70’s modern retro” example in the video, we had a high gloss tile that mimics a wood grain, and we wanted to highlight the 巧克力色.
  4. 添加口音的颜色. 然后,我们可以加进去 一些其他的流行色.


I come up 与 a predominant paint color by going to the chip chart, which is that big old wall of paint chips at the paint store. I grab a few that speak to me, and then I go to the clerk at the paint counter 我向他们要样张.  大多数 paint stores will provide them for free. 它们是电脑打印出来的 are extremely close to the real paint color – a difference really can’t be 被普通的眼睛注意到.

I take these color sample sheets and I move them around the space that I’m working on or placing them next to the other materials I’m going 使用.

Then, I will grab several colors that I may want to accent 与. At this point, we can be liberal in our selection. 我们可以缩小范围 随着我们的脚步.

In one of the video examples, the client mentioned that they wanted some cobalt blues and maybe some fresh blues that are more marines or 绿松石. I try to complement cool colors 与 cool colors. 偶尔 I’ll throw an outlier and stick something warm in.

As I’m building a color palette, I will take some time to 看看感觉如何. Color palettes are really about feel… and they take time to 建立正确的!

Ultimately, I want to end up 与 a paint palette that is no 四种以上颜色. Unless the space is very large, using more than four 颜色会开始有“拼接”的感觉.”


If you are still not feeling confident about selecting color, I have an easy cheat system that I think makes sense and it will be 对你有用.

For example, let’s say you want to do something semi-neutral. You can grab a chip chart from the paint store. 你可以看到颜色 a chip are all from the same formula, but they have been tweaked and lightened 当你在图表上移动的时候. These colors are all 与in that family.

For a monochromatic palette, you can literally pick one as your predominant color and then use two more as accents… this works every time!

Other Ways to Work the Color Palette In

然而,颜色并不仅限于油漆. 如果你有颜色 that you REALLY love, but you just can’t make it work in to your paint palette, you can include the color as an accent 与 accessories or other elements.

An easy, quick fix to really making things feel like they are all pulled together is to weave colors throughout your home in the accents 及配件. You don’t want to just have one of something, but you want it 重复一下.  

What other questions do you have about building a color palette for your home or business?